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Possible Duplicate:
Create firewall “profiles” for Windows 7

Occasionally I tether my laptop to an iPhone and would really like Windows to stop all its' background network activities (such as checking for updates, sending telemetry, etc) at those times since I really don't want it to clog up an already bandwidth-limited 3G connection.

Is there any way to do this?

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marked as duplicate by Karan, Tanner Faulkner, CharlieRB, 8088, ChrisF Jan 18 '13 at 23:38

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question.

The amount of data sent would be extremely small we are talking less then a few MB more then likely. You don't indicate which version of Windows. Windows would only send telemetry data if you enabled it in the first place. – Ramhound Jan 17 '13 at 12:32
Also see Is there an option to control data usage when on metered connections? for an in-built setting in Windows 8. – Karan Jan 20 '13 at 4:38
@Karan: Windows wouldn't know it's on a metered connection, though. To Windows, it's a normal WiFi connection. – Tim Pietzcker Sep 9 '13 at 6:16

Somebody else asked a very similar question a few days ago. You can install a third party firewall and set it to block all outbound network activity and specifically ask it to flag whenever a program attempts to communicate over the network. That way you can specifically allow the programs you need to use, such as internet explorer.

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