The next feature update for Windows 10, Windows 10 version 1803, will feature new privacy settings and improvements that give users and administrators more control over data on the device.
Windows 10 users and admins may change privacy-related settings in several ways on machines running Windows 10. They may change some privacy options under Settings > Privacy, make modifications using policies, or change Registry keys related to privacy.
The privacy options in Settings controlled application access to data up until now almost exclusively. You could turn a feature, say access to the microphone or notifications, off completely, or allow access on an individual basis only.
Microsoft started to improve the privacy settings in the Fall Creators Update. If you open the Location controls in that version of Windows 10, you will notice that disabling location will make it unavailable to apps, Windows, and services.
The most recent Windows 10 Insider Build, version 17074, features three new entries under privacy in the Settings application.
You find the new entries Videos, Documents and Pictures there. All three allow you to block application access to the system folders but you may also notice that you may deny Windows access to these folders as well.
The description reads:
Allow access to the documents/videos/pictures library on this device.
If you allow access, people using this device will be able to choose if their apps have documents/videos/pictures library access by using the settings on this page. Denying access blocks Windows and apps from accessing the documents/videos/pictures library.
A click on the change button turns access on or off on the device. You may also turn off application access only by flipping the preferences switch under "allow apps" on the page.
This prevents applications from accessing the library but not Windows.
Last but not least, you may allow specific applications access but deny access to all other apps.
What happens if you disable access for Windows? It is unclear at this point in time. I ran a quick test after disabling access to the pictures library but did not notice any issues.
Using File Explorer, I could still browse the folder and apps. I fired up Paint 3D and could load images using drag and drop, and could also save files to the folder. Windows Defender scanned the folder as well.
It is possible that the functionality is not fully implemented yet, or that the access restriction only applies to automated processes.
Now You: What's your take on the changes? (via Deskmodder)
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats (video ads) or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.