How to Temporarily Disable Windows 10 Updates: A Step-by-Step Guide

Is there anything more annoying than finding out your unsaved work has been wiped out by a Windows 10 update?

Windows Updates
Windows Updates

Windows 10 updates are essential for the security and performance of your machine, but they can sometimes be inconvenient. Unscheduled updates may sometimes destroy any unsaved work on your home computer’s desktop – even Microsoft has refined the process to run during low usage period.

The company has gotten better with with stretching out essential updates of your Windows 10 system, something we all appreciate.

Important Note: Please remember re-enable updates sooner than later.

windows 10 update panel
windows 10 update panel

Disabling updates can leave your system vulnerable to security risks. Make sure to re-enable updates after a short period to keep your system protected. To re-enable updates, follow the same steps outlined below and set the options back to their original state (e.g., Automatic in Services, Not Configured in Group Policy, and delete the NoAutoUpdate DWORD in the Registry Editor).

So, If you need to temporarily disable updates, follow these steps:

Method 1: Using the Settings App

  1. Open Settings
    • Press Win + I to open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to Update & Security
    • Click on Update & Security.
  3. Pause Updates
    • Click on Windows Update in the left-hand menu.
    • Click on Advanced options.
    • Under Pause updates, select a date. You can pause updates for up to 35 days.
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Method 2: Using the Services Console

  1. Open Run Dialog
    • Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Open Services
    • Type services.msc and press Enter to open the Services console.
  3. Find Windows Update Service
    • Scroll down to find Windows Update in the list of services.
  4. Stop the Service
    • Right-click on Windows Update and select Stop.
  5. Disable the Service
    • Right-click on Windows Update again, select Properties.
    • In the Startup type dropdown, select Disabled.
    • Click Apply, then OK.

Method 3: Using Group Policy Editor (For Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise)

  1. Open Run Dialog
    • Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Open Group Policy Editor
    • Type gpedit.msc and press Enter to open the Local Group Policy Editor.
  3. Navigate to Windows Update Policies
    • Go to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update.
  4. Configure Automatic Updates
    • Double-click on `Configure Automatic
    • Select Disabled.
    • Click Apply, then OK.

Method 4: Using the Registry Editor (Advanced Users)

  1. Open Run Dialog
    • Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.
  2. Open Registry Editor
    • Type regedit and press Enter to open the Registry Editor.
    • Click Yes if prompted by User Account Control.
  3. Navigate to Windows Update Key
    • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU. If the keys do not exist, you may need to create them.
  4. Create a New DWORD
    • Right-click in the right pane, select New, and then DWORD (32-bit) Value.
    • Name it NoAutoUpdate.
  5. Set the Value
    • Double-click on the new NoAutoUpdate entry.
    • Set the value to 1.
    • Click OK, then close the Registry Editor.
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Conclusion

While Windows updates are crucial for maintaining the security and performance of your system, there are times when you may need to temporarily disable them. By following these steps, you can control when updates are installed, allowing you to manage your work and system reboots more effectively. Remember to re-enable updates to keep your system secure.