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How to disable Windows 10 Automatic Updates

How to disable Windows 10 Automatic Updates

by AshwinJune 22, 2018

While we recommend readers to defer updates, to prevent buggy Windows Updates, we understand that you may need to know how to disable Windows 10 automatic updates completely. One of the most common reasons for this, is that the update process can cause delays during shut down. 

Let’s say you have a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) which provides a short time battery backup for the PC and you experience sudden blackout (due to a power outage or a blown fuse or transformer), and you want to shut down the PC. You may notice that the computer may have downloaded Windows Update in the background, and wants to Update and Shut down. 

Your UPS may run out of charge, causing critical errors for the PC. Windows may not boot, or start crashing. Seriously, how can a company like Microsoft overlook such a scenario? 

You could use Alt + F4 to immediately turn off the computer, but it may not always work, and there is a good chance that you may choose the Update and Shut down option. 

How to disable Windows 10 Automatic Updates 

This process involves editing the Windows Registry, but we will explain it in simple steps.

1. Open the Registry Editor (by typing regedit in the startmenu and clicking the name).

2. Go to the folder located in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows

3. Create a new key by right-clicking on the Windows folder in the sidebar, and name it as WindowsUpdate.

4. Right-click on the created WindowsUpdate key and create another key and name it AU, to represent Automatic Updates.

5. Now, switch to the right pane in the AU key, and right-click anywhere to create a new DWORD 32-bit value, and name it AUOptions.

6. To change the value of the DWORD, double click on it and set the value to 2 (Hexadecimal).

7. Click on OK and close the Windows registry.

 Congratulations, you now know how to disable Windows 10 Automatic Updates. 

Windows 10 will notify you through the Action Center, when a new update is available for download. And you have to manually open the Settings App to click on the Download button, to get the update and install it. 

So, if you are in a hurry to shut down the computer, this can be a life saver. This is also a good way to prevent new updates from being installed. You can wait for a while to see if an update is stable enough to be installed. 

Windows 10 still limits some updates which it deems necessary, which cannot be disabled from being updated in anyway. Oh well, at least we have control over some of the updates.