Windows SDK: How and why we collect installation information, part 1

One of the key initiatives of the Windows SDK is to find out more about our users’ experience with our product. We do this for one simple reason: we want to use your experience to help us improve what we release to you. We want to really know, in a detailed way, how you use the SDK. It’s great to hear from you through blog feedback, conversations at events and through the Forums, but in all those places we run into the same problem. Namely, how do we interpret that data? If one user is reporting a particular problem, we can be reasonably sure that they’re not the only one having it. But it’s hard to tell how many are affected by that issue.


Thankfully, Microsoft has CEIP (Customer Experience Improvement Program), which provides the ability for teams at Microsoft to get real data on how customers use our products. If you use Visual Studio or Windows Media Player, you’re probably familiar with seeing an opt-in dialog box for CEIP. That box informs you that if you choose to do so, data will be sent that will help Microsoft improve our products. The data collected through that feedback system allows product teams at Microsoft to understand how our users really use our applications. We use this data to help improve our products. As part of the process of collecting data, we are required to conform to our Microsoft Privacy Standard for Development, which is mentioned on our Privacy Progress page on In addition, we must comply with the CEIP Privacy Policy. Here are some of the standards that all Microsoft product teams are required to follow:


·          The user must always opt in to sending their data.

·          No personally identifiable data may be collected.

·          CEIP data may not be cross-referenced to derive personally identifiable data.

·          CEIP may only collect data necessary to the understanding, development and support of an application and future versions of that application.

·          Data may not be shared with third parties.

·          Provide a link to Microsoft’s Privacy Policy in an obvious place.


I’ll post about the SDK’s implementation of CEIP later in the week.


Jason Sacks

Setup PM

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