How To Disable Microsoft’s ‘Spying’ Service On Windows 10

How To Disable Microsoft’s ‘Spying’ Service On Windows 10

When Windows 10 was released, many people were up in arms over the operating system’s ability to constantly track how users were interacting with it and would send that information back to Microsoft. With the first major update for Windows 10 that came out earlier this month, Microsoft has seemingly removed Diagnostics Tracking Service, also known as DiagTrack, which was responsible for the tracking. But it turns out the company has just renamed the service.

Microsoft’s official stance on all the “spying” accusations is that the data is collected to constantly improve Windows 10 and it’s not used to spy on users but there’s still furor over the issue.

According to TweakHound, Diagnostics Tracking Service appears to be gone from Windows 10 after users install the big November update but it’s still there, just under a different name. It has now been renamed as the Connect User Experience and Telemetry service.

Those who don’t want Windows 10 to constantly send their data back to Microsoft, fear not. There’s a way to disable the service. Forbes has released instructions on how to do so:

  1. Hold down the Windows key and tap the R key
  2. In the box that opens type ‘services.msc’ and press the Enter key
  3. In the ‘Services (Local)’ section locate ‘Connected User Experiences and Telemetry’ and double-click it
  4. In the ‘Service status’ section click ‘Stop’
  5. Under the ‘Startup type’ drop down menu select ‘Disabled’ and then confirm this and close the window by clicking ‘OK’

[Via TweakHound and Forbes]


  • I don’t seem to have that in my service registry.

    Is if for a specific update or should it generally be there?

  • Punters upset about being spied on, so MS rename it.
    Difficult to frame this as anything but contemptuous deception.

    • I did point out in the article that Microsoft has given their reasoning behind the monitoring.

      You don’t have to agree with it but there are still a lot of people concerned about this issue. The article is providing information on how to disable the service for those who want to do so.

      • I think the point he’s making is that people being concerned about this is based on a lack of understanding of what’s actually going on. Every service we interact with collects some kind of data about us. How many of the people up in arms about this still have Facebook and Google accounts? The only reason Windows is any different is that you have some access to the services that handle your data, and as such it’s slightly less transparent.
        Calling what Microsoft are doing “spying” is inflammatory, sensationalist, and clickbait-y and frankly it represents a lower standard of journalism than I’ve come to expect from Lifehacker.

        • Hi aussieshibe,

          I’m sorry you feel that way. If you read the article carefully, the tone of the piece is quite neutral. I do note that there are accusations of Microsoft “spying” and that’s been put into quotation marks to emphasise that they are just that – accusations. If you followed one of the links in the article you will be directed to a piece that we published dispelling a lot of the fears people have about Windows 10 monitoring their activities.

          Having said that clearly people do care enough about their privacy to continue to follow this issue. You point out that Google and Facebook collect data so it doesn’t make Microsoft any better or worse. That may also be true, but this article is about giving people a choice. Those that don’t want to be monitored can follow the instructions to disable the tracking service on Windows 10. The article doesn’t make a statement on whether the accusations are true or not. Simple as that.

          Hope this helps.

          Kind Regards,


        • Facebook and Google are free.

          People BUY their operating system for a substantial amount and expect to have their privacy and security as a consequence.

          If Microsoft gave Windows 10 away free (the full product) then I could understand the information collection (like Facebook and Google).

          When information is collected in an underhanded way against the wishes of the users and done repeatedly, the term ‘spying’ is completely appropriate.

          • You must not have any Apple products then? And the reference to google is a stretch, Andriod is not free…

          • Wow dexter with funny 3’s in your name… you must be bored hey??? Now casting my mind back to when I wrote this either:
            a) it was so long ago that Android was charged for or
            b) I come from another planet where Android is charged for or
            c) Who the f*ck knows… because I was worried about sabre tooth tigers entering my cave and killing my family

            Although I am interested where you can download Android and androidify something – maybe that’s why my fridge doesn’t automagically make pina colada’s… now all I need to do is download the “free” android stuff and push it up the nozzle of the water spout and hey presto!!! Any tips on how to do this would be great by the way.

            Perhaps if you compare it to my comment about not owning Apple products you might be able draw a link… although I’m guessing that is not why you replied to this comment from the olden days…

            All the best,
            bonehead (without the funny 3’s but still a bonehead). But if it makes it easier to read…

            All the best,
            b0n3h3ad (even added a zero in the for extra awesomeness)

          • Android is free. It has always been free and always will be. You used a mocking tone to point out that you can’t download your own Android. But you can. Literally from the Android website. It’s free. You don’t seem very bright, though, so you wouldn’t know what to do with it.

          • Although, I must say, the response was slow in coming. Maybe it was a beta version of Android…

            Android is as free as iOS – it doesn’t run on thin air…

            …and if anyone bothered (or had the intelligence) to read the whole thread, the point I was trying to make is that if you think M$ is any more sneaky than any other major software provider you’re living in denial.

  • This does NOT work now – did it ever?

    I disabled the service and thought that was it sorted, but after 10 minutes of starting up my PC Microsoft Compatibility Telemetry started writing to disk. How the hell are we supposed to prevent this on Windows 10 Pro?

  • This is 2018 and this is strange. On Windows 10 if you look in Task Manager and click on the Services tab under Name it is still listed as DiagTrack. Under the Description it says Connected User Experiences and Telemetry. Then if you open Services it is named Connected User Experiences and Telemetry. I wonder why it is listed like that?

  • After the Fall Creators update disabling this service will result in it being re-enabled after a period of time. I note the same occurs with the Windows Update service – though I appreciate it being slightly off-topic. To address this (or both if you are so inclined), don’t disable the service. Change the startup type to Manual, but on the Log On tab, select “this account”, then give it the user name of Guest. Type a password at random and make sure it’s the same in both password fields. Stop the service and that’s job done. The service will not be able to start again, even if you try to start it.
    Regardless of the claimed reasons and promises to be nice, I object to Microsoft removing my choice of what to collect about my usage. It’s not fear mongering to say “Microsoft is collecting data about what you do on your computer” as this has not been denied and the default security and privacy settings make it clear they are doing just that. Because Microsoft consider Windows 10 to be a “service” and no longer a “product”, the T’s & C’s that you as a user must comply with are weighted in their favor noting that perception. If Microsoft had permitted people to keep Windows 7, or roll back AND maintain update support for Windows 7, then Windows 10 uptake would have been marginal. Windows 10 has been described as spyware with an operating system tacked on, and it’s not a completely unfair comment. When you consider that in default configuration from a fresh install and using only the supplied apps such ad Edge, Cortana and the new image viewer, Microsoft IS collecting information about what you do, when you do it, what you view and where you surf and what things you like to know about or shop for. Sadly this is not “news”, though most Windows 10 users are blissfully unaware.
    My thanks to Spandas for the article and apologies for stretching the topic in my reply.

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