How you install the Creators Update for Windows 10 affects privacy settings

At long last, Microsoft will begin dishing out its Creators Update for Windows 10 to the masses beginning tomorrow, April 11. If you don't want to wait, you can use Microsoft's upgrade tool to apply the update right now. Just be sure to pay attention to the privacy settings during installation.

TomsHardware reports that when upgrading manually using Microsoft's Windows 10 Update Assistant, your privacy settings will revert back to their default values. I saw the same thing when upgrading my primary PC over the weekend, so it does not appear to be an isolated incident.

The good news here is that Microsoft is being much more transparent about the data it collects. And when applying the Creators Update, the privacy options offer up clearer descriptions of what they do and what the implication will be if you decide to disable any of the options.

By default, the privacy controls encourage you to share your location and provide full diagnostic data to Microsoft to fix issues and improve future iterations of Windows 10. The default options also encourage enabling Cortana and receiving targeted ads rather than generic ones.

This will be the case when using Microsoft's Windows 10 Update Assistant whether your choose to upgrade or do a clean install. However, if you wait until tomorrow and apply the upgrade through Windows Update, Microsoft will respect your current privacy settings and leave them alone with applying the Creators Update. That is supposed to be the case, anyway—we'll have to wait until tomorrow to know for sure.

If you're okay with reconfiguring your privacy settings and want to apply the Creators Update now, go here to download the upgrade tool. Be sure to backup any important data first just in case things go awry. I didn't run into any hiccups myself, but with so many hardware and software combinations in the wild, it's inevitable that not every upgrade will go smoothly.