As we have discussed in past articles, Windows Updates are very important for maintaining a secure system. So why are we discussing how to disable them? Because Microsoft has changed the way automatic updates work. In the past, Windows Updates were downloaded directly from Microsoft servers. In Windows 10, your computer can now download and upload updates to and from other computers, both on the Internet and on your own local network. This method can be more efficient due to the fact that if one Windows 10 computer downloads an update, the one next to it won’t have to. This feature can also be a problem if you’re using a metered connection as some of the Windows 10 updates (new build versions especially) can be over 3GB in size. The good news is that there is a simple way to fix this. All you need to do is to set your Internet connection as metered. Here’s how you do that.
To mark a wireless connection as metered in Windows 10, first connect to the network, then click on Start > Settings > Network & Internet > Wifi > Advanced options and enable Set as metered connection.
Are you on a metered connection but unable to use it wirelessly? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Windows 10 currently allows you to set a wired connection as a metered connection. Click on Start > Settings > Network & Internet > Ethernet> Network> and enable Set as metered connection.
First, you’ll need to pause updates. To do this, click on Start > Settings > Update & Security > Advanced Options> Pause Updates. This will temporarily pause the updates for up to 35 days, giving you time to plan either a trip to the library, or to save up some data.
The next thing you’ll want to do is to disable the sharing of updates with other PCs. To do this, click on Start > Settings > Update & Security > Advanced Options> Delivery Optimization. You can then turn the feature off entirely by disabling Allow downloads from other PCs, or you can disable only the Internet PCs option. That will allow you other computers to share updates with each other, but not share them online.
Disable App Updates & Live Tiles
The Windows Store automatically updates apps you have purchased. These updates are now handled with the regular Windows Updates, so you don’t need to disable or pause them separately. Next, you’ll want to turn off the Live Tiles feature in the start menu. Please note that if you are using the Weather, News, Money or other “live” apps that they will no longer show you current data until you open the app. To disable to live data feed on an app tile simply right-click on the tile then click on More, Turn live tile off.
Some Final Thoughts on Saving Data
Most large data consumption comes by browsing sites and viewing content that consumes large amounts of data. Sites like YouTube, Netflix, and Hulu are prime culprits because video needs a large data stream. You can minimize this effect by watching lower quality videos. Most video sites will adjust your video quality based on your connection speed but you can manually change the quality to save on data consumption, even if you’re on a fast connection.
Other culprits in data consumption are file-sharing programs like uTorrent, BearShare, LimeWire, etc. File-sharing programs not only download files but also upload them to other users. Using these programs can also be illegal if used to download copyrighted materials. Finally, remember that malware infections can use tremendous volumes of data because they not only infect your computer, but they often use your computer and Internet connection to infect other computers. If you’re on a metered connection and find yourself going over your data allotment, you may want to bring your computer in for service. You should also consider investing in a quality antimalware program such as Emsisoft Antimalware. As my mother would say, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!”