Windows 10 is designed to be an always-connected and up-to-date operating system. It is the most data-hungry version of Windows as of now, but you also can restrict it from going all out of control by keeping the following points in mind.
1. Per-Application You use
The majority of data usage on your PC probably comes from the applications you use. Windows 10 includes a new “Data Usage” tool that allows you to see exactly how much data each application on your computer has been using. This will help you track down data-hungry programs, including third-party ones.
To check your data usage over the last 30 days, open the Settings app from your Start menu to Network & Internet > Data Usage. You’ll see a graph showing how much data your Windows 10 PC has used over the last 30 days.
To view which applications have been using data, click or tap “Usage Details” here. This shows you exactly where your data is going.
2. Automatic Windows Updates
Windows 10 normally downloads and installs updates automatically without your input. Microsoft updates Windows 10 very often, and those updates can be fairly large. For example, Windows 10’s first big update, known as either the “November update” or “version 1511,” was about 3GB in size on its own.
There are several ways to prevent Windows 10 from automatically downloading updates, depending on the edition of Windows 10 you have. To do this on any PC–even ones with Windows 10 Home–set your home Wi-Fi network as a metered connection. Windows 10 won’t automatically download updates on that connection, but instead will prompt you. You can then choose when to download updates, or take your computer to another Wi-Fi network and update from that other network.
3. Automatic Peer-to-Peer Update Sharing
Windows 10 automatically uses your Internet connection to upload Windows and app updates to other Windows 10 PCs. It’s a BitTorrent-style system for distributing updates to Windows 10 users.
To prevent the automatic uploads on all networks, you’ll need to open the Settings app, go to Update & Security > Windows Update and click “Advanced Options.” Click “Choose How Updates are Delivered” and set this option to just “PCs on My Local Network” or disable it.
4. Automatic App Updates and Live Tile Updates
To prevent Windows 10 from updating Windows Store apps on its own, open the Store app. Click or tap your profile picture near the search box and select “Settings.” Disable the “Update Apps Automatically” checkbox. You can still update your Store apps manually from the Windows Store app, but Windows won’t automatically download app updates on its own.This is useful even if you haven’t installed any apps from the Store.
Those live tiles on your Start menu use a bit of data.You won’t save much data by disabling live tiles, but you can save every little bit.To prevent a tile from automatically downloading and displaying new data, right-click or long-press it in the Start menu, point to “More,” and select “Turn Live Tile Off.”
5. Save Data on Web Browsing
You can see just how much by looking at the Data Usage screen.
To save data on this web browsing, use a web browser that includes a built-in compressing proxy feature. The web browser will route the data through other servers where it’s compressed before being sent to you. Google offers an official Data Saver extension for Google Chrome.Install it and you’re good to go.
Once you’ve gotten Windows 10’s automatic updates–and automatic uploading of updates–under control, the Windows operating system should be using very little data on its own.