How to Pause and Resume a Windows Update Download in Windows 10

Windows 10 has a lot of changes and one of them is how Windows downloads and installs the Windows updates. In Windows 7 you can control when Windows can download and install the updates. In fact, you can even disable Windows updates completely. However, in Windows 10 the choice for you is pretty limited. You cannot control when Windows 10 will download the updates, but you can make Windows 10 install those updates outside of the active hours. Of course, this makes sure that all the users are up to date, and Microsoft doesn’t have to worry about releasing major updates or features.

Typically, Windows updates range anywhere from a few megabytes to a few hundred megabytes. If you have a decent Internet connection then downloading these updates is not a problem. However, if you have a poor or limited Internet connection, downloading these updates can be a hassle. Windows tends to take up all the speed, and your general browsing experience will be degraded. To make things worse, there is no straightforward option to temporarily pause the downloads like in Windows 7.

So, if you are ever in a pinch, here is how you can forcefully pause a Windows update in Windows 10.

As I said before, there is no straightforward way but there is a hack to pause Windows update downloads. All you have to do is stop all the Windows update services and then restart them when you are ready to download the updates.

Typically, you can stop those services from the Services tool in Windows 10. However, you can make things easier by using Command Prompt. To start, press “Win + X,” then select the option “Command Prompt (Admin).”

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The above action will open the command prompt in admin mode. The first thing we need to do is stop the Windows Update service. To do that execute the below command.

Now, stop the “Background Intelligent Transfer” service using the below command.

Next, stop the “Delivery Optimization” service using the below command.

The above commands will temporarily pause the Windows update downloads.

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If you are ready to resume the download, simply execute the below commands one after the other.

If you do this way too often, then you can just create a simple batch script to automate most of the process. To do that, create a new text document, copy and paste the below code into it, and the save the file with the “.bat” extension. In my case, I’ve saved the file as “stopwuservice.bat.”

To run the script, right-click on the batch file, and then select the option “Run as Administrator.”

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With the above action, the commands will be executed one by one. This script is not the most elegant one, but it does get the job done.

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To resume the services, create another batch script with the below commands, and then run it as administrator.

That’s all there is to do. It is that simple to pause and resume Windows update downloads in Windows 10.

9 comments

  1. How do you stop Windows 10 from updating? Twice in the last week a large update downloaded and hours later I was stuck with a black screen and spinning dots – no hard drive activity. I forced a power down and then powered up with F8 pressed down – the computer reloaded the previous Win 10 version.

  2. The problem is not stopping and starting any updates. I think it would be better that a notification that updates are available would be better just like in Windows 7.

  3. I followed the recommended procedure to pause windows 10 creators update but the response to the command “net stop dosvc” is “The requsted pause, continue or stop is not valid for this service”.
    Please comment.

  4. With this procedure, will the resumption of the download begin all over or will it start where it left off? In other words, if a download is 50% complete, will the resumption only have to download the remaining 50%? If this procedure starts the download all over, is there any way to pause and resume a download without starting over? This would be very desirable in a case where a huge download is eating up a lot of bandwidth and the user wishes to put the download aside long enough to conduct other business but would not want to have the download start all over.

    • The Windows 10 updater is a mess. Frequent updates indicate how unstable it is. The updater restarted by a machine reboot and it started all over again, from 0%. I don’t see that the Windows update is resuming interrupted downloads. Sickening! Already started to think of downgrading it to Windows 7 or moving to Linux…

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