Re: Sending recent activity data to Microsoft
"This is why I still use Windows 7-64, until Jan 2020. After that I don't know what I'll do, Linux Wine perhaps?"
There's also Windows 8.1, suitably modified. I'm preparing for a Windows-free future too (using Linux to post this), but I also have 8.1 installed on both of my main PCs. Out of the box, 8.1 has a pretty poor UI, but that can be fixed. With Classic Shell to replace the tiled start screen and eliminate the hot corners and charms, Old New Explorer to remove the ribbon from Windows Explorer, a custom theme to un-flatify the UI, and a batch file along with install_wim_tweak.exe to evict the Windows Store and all of the other apps, Windows 8.1 is very close to Windows 7, only with three more years of support. No Windows as a Service pushing out unwanted updates that break a lot of things twice a year, no forced updates, no more telemetry than Win 7 (easily removed, unlike 10), no Cortana, no uncommanded installations or uninstallations... if you must run Windows, it's better than 10 by far, and still has a lot of life left in it.
It's still a temporary measure, even if the time frame is long. Microsoft shows no signs of backing off on this insane direction they're taking with 10, so while we can hope that they will see the light and make Windows 10 into something worth using, it's not terribly likely.