How to Configure or Disable Automatic Updates in Windows 10

How to Configure or Disable Automatic Updates in Windows 10

There are a lot of changes in Windows 10, and automatic updates is one of them. Along with the automatic updates, Windows 10 is also pre-configured to use your bandwidth to deliver updates, but you can easily disable it. When it comes to automatic updates, there is no straightforward way to configure or disable them.

If you ever want to, here are different ways to disable automatic Windows 10 updates.

Windows 10 automatically restarts whenever it finishes downloading or installing the updates. If you don’t like this behavior, you can configure Windows 10 to restart at a scheduled time. To do that, click on the Notification icon in the taskbar, and then select the “All settings” option.

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The above action will open the Windows 10 settings panel. Here, select the “Update and Security” option.

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Select “Windows Update” in the left pane, and then click on the “Advanced Options” link in the right pane.

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Under “Choose how updates are installed,” select the “Notify to schedule restart” option from the drop-down menu.

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From this point onward, Windows 10 will notify you to schedule a restart to install the downloaded updates.

Other than scheduling a restart after downloading or installing the updates, you can force Windows to notify you before downloading the updates. To do that, press “Win + R” and type gpedit.msc to open the Windows Group Policy Editor.

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Navigate to “Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Update” in the left pane, and double-click on the “Configure Automatic Updates” policy.

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The above action will open the relevant policy settings. Select the “Enabled” radio button, and then select the “Notify for download and notify for install” option from the drop-down menu. Now click on the “Ok” button to save the changes.

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Restart your system. Windows 10 will now notify you before downloading and installing the updates.

One thing to keep in mind is that even though Windows 10 notifies you before downloading and installing the updates, you still cannot pick and choose which updates are downloaded and installed.

If you find any updates that are conflicting with your Windows 10 system, you can easily hide them using the Show or Hide updates troubleshooter app provided by Microsoft.

To start, download the app and execute it. Once the app has been opened, click on the “Next” button to continue.

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Click on the “Hide updates” option.

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This action will scan for all available updates including the driver updates. Just select the updates you want to hide, and click on the “Next” button.

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This action will hide the update. You can now close the app.

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If you ever want to, you can easily unhide the updates using the same app. One thing to keep in mind is that this solution is just temporary, and the updates will resurface from time to time, so save the downloaded app in case you need it in the future.

Note: disabling the updates is never encouraged; only follow the below tips if you know what you are doing.

If you want to disable the Windows 10 updates completely, you can certainly do so.

One way is to set your Internet connection type to “Metered.” When on metered connections, Windows won’t download the updates.

To start, open the Settings window from the Action Center. Select the “Network and Internet” option.

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Select your connection, and then click on the “Advanced options” link.

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Scroll down and turn on the metered connection option. From now on Windows won’t download the updates as long as the metered connection setting is active.

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However, the metered connection option is only available when you are using WiFi or mobile data.

Another way to disable the Windows 10 updates is to simply stop the Windows Updates service from running altogether. To do that, press “Win + R,” type services.msc and press the Enter button to open the Windows Services.

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Once the Services window has been opened, find the “Windows Update” service, right-click on it and select the “Properties” option.

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The above action will open the “Windows Update Properties” window. Select the “Disabled” option from the drop-down menu next to “Startup type.” Once selected, click on the “Ok” button to save the changes.

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From this point forward no updates will be installed on your Windows 10 machine.

As you can see, it may not be straightforward, but you can certainly configure and disable automatic updates in Windows 10 to a certain extent.

Do comment below sharing your thoughts and experiences about using the above methods to configure or disable automatic updates in Windows 10.

8 comments

  1. Thanks for the article on disabling automatic updates in Windows 10. Unfortunately, two of those methods don’t work.
    1. gpedit.msc is not available on the home version of Windows 10. You have to have Windows 10 Professional for that option.
    2. metered connection options are not available on many desktop versions of Windows 10. I have been going around with Microsoft on this one. Unless the drivers for your particular system convince Windows 10 that your system is “mobile”, you don’t get the sliders for turning on/off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or Airplane mode, nor the option to say that you are on a metered connection. Among other things, unless your system has a “battery driver”, Windows 10 doesn’t think you are mobile.

    — Charley

  2. I was disappointed to find I could not find the gpedit.msc on my computer. Oh, well. I have now chosen to be notified before rescheduling a restart.

  3. Fine article. As a usual, I work remotely on my office computer using Windows OS which upgraded recently to Windows 10. A couple of times I had to urgently run to my office because the office computer restarted after updates downloaded for the updates to be installed and before the OS started a user interaction required to continue, so, remote access to the computer was not available. Thanks to the author of the article, I can now work with my office computer without a risk to lost connection in view of the authomatic updates issue.

  4. Vamsi,
    Speaking of Windows Updates, do you know of any way to request Windows to reinstall a FAILED update? Occasionally a requested update shows as FAILED in the STATUS column of the UPDATE HISTORY but I cannot find a way to tell Windows to “try again”. Do you know of a way?
    Thanks,
    Dan

    • Hi Dan,

      There is no straightforward way to deal with this. For one, if Windows shows the update with failed status but is listed in the installed updates, then there is no need to reinstall it.

      Or, you can follow the link below to manually download and install the target update.
      https://www.maketecheasier.com/update-windows-10-offline/

      Or, you can delete all the files in the folder “C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download” so that Windows will download the updates.

      • Hi Vamsi,

        You lost me on:
        “if Windows shows the update with failed status but is listed in the installed updates, then there is no need to reinstall it”.

        If the installed update failed then I’d want to redo it and install it so that the STATUS column shows SUCCESS.

        I used to install IBM mainframe (I know, what a dinosaur I am) fixes and if a fix failed (for whatever reason) then I would have to back it off and reinstall it so that it was successful. Surely, a FAILED status should never be accepted otherwise why have a STATUS column?!?

        Dan

  5. If I’ve already schedule a specific restart date, will the update still apply if I restart my PC (update software) before the schedule date?

Comments are closed.

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