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Windows 11(and 10) Settings to Turn Off

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                        With the launch of Windows 11 came the need to relearn and readjust to the new interface. With the new interface came many settings and apps that can be causing you unneeded annoyance. Here’s a few items to adjust to possibly remove some of that annoyance. Many of these changes will be made in the Settings area, so that part of the setting change path will be omitted.

1. Signing in with a Local Account.
            Windows 11 Home now forces the use of a Microsoft account at initial setup with no way around this at first. However, once you finish the initial setup of the system you can simply convert to a local account with just a few clicks. Go to Accounts>Your Info, then under the Account Settings section you will see a link that says “Sign in with a local account instead”. Clicking this will show a dialog box essentially asking you to continue using a Microsoft account due to the “benefits”. While there are small benefits to using a MSA, the added privacy of not having everything you do on your computer tracked is a welcome trade off.

2. Remove the Recommended and Recently installed apps

            The new larger start menu has an area completely dedicated to advertisements and recently installed applications. This can be easily removed by going to Personalization>Start, then turning off the settings in this area. If you’re not a fan of the new Windows 11 centered taskbar, going to Personalization>Taskbar will allow you to choose the left justified layout and remove some of the “permanent” pins. This will give a more familiar feel to the layout of your taskbar and give you much more real estate overall for your open apps.

3. Turn off Notifications and Ads.

            Another annoying feature of Windows 11 is the number of notifications and advertisements that you get in the pop-up window in the bottom right. To turn these off go to System>Notifications. Here you can choose to either disable all notifications, or just the ones that matter to you(Outlook for new email alerts for example) While here also disable the box for “Get tips and suggestions when I use Windows” to unclutter the area even more.

4. Privacy

            Just like Windows 10, Windows 11 has many new or reactivated permissions that may need to be turned off again. Go to Privacy & Security and under the Windows Permissions section go through each of these and disable them completely, or at least choose the ones that you’re okay with Microsoft tracking. A small exception to this is the “Diagnostics & feedback” section. If you’re part of the Windows Insider program you must leave the Optional data turned on, the rest of the permissions under that section can still be disabled.

5. App Permissions

            Many apps installed on your computer have default options set to allow them access to your microphone, camera, and search results. There are too many to go through but these settings can be found in Privacy & security settings under the App Permissions section. I highly recommend going through these and customizing what has access rights. Apps that require access will ask again when that feature is needed.

Changing these settings will result in a less monitored and cluttered experience in Windows 11, and a bit more privacy in Windows 10. If you need help adjusting these settings, give us a call we’ll be more than happy to assist with this.

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