By default, you can’t change the Windows Update settings in Windows 10 Technical Preview. In this post, I explain how you can disable Windows Update and set it to “Never check for updates” with a little PowerShell script.

Michael Pietroforte

Michael Pietroforte is the founder and editor in chief of 4sysops. He has more than 35 years of experience in IT management and system administration.

 

Update: This article about the Preview version of Windows 10. In the final release things are different. Please read my new articles about the topic:

Stop automatic updates in Windows 10 RTM (build 10240)

Disable Windows 10 Update in the Registry and with PowerShell

Windows 10 default setting ^

From Microsoft’s point of view, it makes sense to force testers of the Windows 10 Technical Preview to always install the latest updates. Feedback about bugs is only valuable if the installation has the latest updates. I suppose this is why the Windows Update settings are grayed out and configured to Install updates automatically (recommend).

Even if you sign in with administrator privileges, you’ll see the message “Some settings are managed by your system administrator” in the Windows Update setting Control Panel applet.

Windows Update - Some settings are managed by your system administrators

Windows Update - Some settings are managed by your system administrator

The PC settings in the modern interface don’t look much better.

Choose how updates get installed

Choose how updates get installed

When I am testing software, I usually work with linked clones in VirtualBox. If a test takes several days, Windows will automatically install updates if your virtual machine is online. Whenever I am finished with a test, I delete the linked clone and create a new one to ensure that I have a fresh test environment. It can get on your nerves if Windows Update then starts installing updates again. Thus, I always disable Windows Update in my virtual machines and update my master image manually.

With Group Policy ^

A Group Policy setting exists that allows system administrators to change the Windows Update configuration. However, as you will see shortly, this doesn’t bring us much closer to our goal to disable Windows Update. The Configure Automatic Updates setting can be found at Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Update.

Group Policy - Configure Automatic Updates

Group Policy - Configure Automatic Updates

As you can see in the screenshot above, you can’t really disable Windows Update here and, if you change the Group Policy setting to Allow local admin to choose setting, you will only get the Control Panel options you see in the screenshot below.

Windows Update settings local admins can change

Windows Update settings local admins can change

The configuration Never check for updates is missing. If you choose Check for updates but let me choose whether to download and install them, Windows will get on your nerves with update messages during your tests.

With Registry ^

Update: In Windows 10 build 9926 (January build), the Windows Update applet in the Control Panel disappeared. To bring it back you have to copy the text below to a file with the extension REG and then launch the file.

If you want to completely disable Windows Update, you can do this by changing the Registry setting:

If you set AUOptions to “1”, Windows 10 will never check for updates. This is, of course, not recommended. Notice that this will only work if you keep the default configuration of the above-mentioned Group Policy setting.

Never check for updates

Never check for updates

If you choose this setting, please make sure that you update your Windows master image regularly.

With PowerShell ^

The little PowerShell script below shows you what other values exist for AUOptions and allows you to quickly switch between the Window Update settings. Make sure that you launch the REG file I mentioned above first.

Please let me know if you know of other ways to change the Windows Update settings in Windows 10.

Update: This article about the Preview version of Windows 10. In the final release things are different. Please read my new articles about the topic:

Stop automatic updates in Windows 10 RTM (build 10240)

Disable Windows 10 Update in the Registry and with PowerShell

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71 Comments
  1. Linda 4 years ago

    Windows 10 will not stop downloading. I have a blue screen with dots moving in a circular motion and a blanc box on the bottom right hand corner. I have access to nothing. How do i get it off?

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  2. Anonymous 4 years ago

    Thank you very much....it worked fine for me....thanks a lot for this fix.. 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

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  3. danwat1234 4 years ago

    You CAN (CAN!) disable Windows Update in Windows 10 Home edition, no problem! Also Windows Defender.
    youtube dot com slash watch?v=O0O55D3pE_s

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  4. Kilian 4 years ago

    Hello Mister Pietroforte,

    thank you very much for your impressive guide on how to disable Windows Update. I've managed to follow it for all but one step. I can't change the registry value for

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsUpdate\UX]
    "IsConvergedUpdateStackEnabled"

    Every time i try executing it, of course using my admin rights, it gives me the following error message:

    "IsConvergedUpdateStackEnabled can not be edited: Failed to change value."
    (Might be slightly inaccurate due to translation)

    However every other step worked just perfectly fine, and I am glad that you made the effort in sharing.

    Have a nice day, Sir.

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  5. J@CK 4 years ago

    Kilian,

    You need to change the permission of that key before you can make changes. You can change the owner of the key to the admin account and set write permission for the key.

    However, having tried on a Home Edition build 10240, I am unable to make any difference using the registry trick.

    Also, I am not trying to fully disable Windows Update. I would like to take back some of the control to just being notified about new update available!!!!

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  6. michael 4 years ago

    On turning off Microsoft updates, this worked for me. Windows 10 Home, installed Aug. 4,2015. I went into regedit, edit>find>auoptions. changed auoptions to 0, and 0 for action center notification count also. it has not updated since, however, I have not turned the machine off neither yet.

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  7. Michael Pietroforte 4 years ago

    michael, did you verify the setting in the Update app? I think the Registry settings no longer work in the final release of Windows 10 (RTM). I published a new article about the topic.

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  8. irrenn 4 years ago

    hi
    tnx for ur help
    can u share screenshot from editing registry i tried to disable update completely but there is no AUOptions in windows update can u help plz

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  9. Ray 4 years ago

    Thanks, but I'd rather keep the registry as is.
    One point though, couldn't you simply disable the service "Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)" in control panel>services? This service is responsible for background update and as far as I know, it was also the reason behind why many users complained about their windows downloading stuff and using bandwidth while they had no program running. Maybe give a shot?

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  10. Anonymous 4 years ago

    Thanks & Regards.

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  11. Mahdi 4 years ago

    hey
    I got a question
    if I disable windows updates from registry can I enable that in future????

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  12. Charles 4 years ago

    If all you want to do is stop Windows Update, it's a lot easier to;

    Click on Start, in the "Search Programs and Files" location at the bottom of the window, type in, "Services.msc" and either click on the icon that is displayed or press enter. When the "Services" window opens, scroll down to the very bottom, Windows Update is about the 7th entry from the bottom. Double click "Windows Update". In the "Startup Type" field, click on the pull down arrow and choose "Disable". Then click "OK" and close the window, the Windows Update routine/service will not start up so your system will never check for or down load updates. It's easy enough to undue when you want to allow updates in the future. Or you can select the "Manual" option and manually go into the Update window and tell the system to check for updates.

    I'm not running 10 but I walked a friend through this on their upgraded machine.

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  13. Soph E 4 years ago

    Charles, you're a saviour! Your solution is extra-simple, easy to reverse when needed and it really works! Thank you so much!

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  14. Alexander Lee 4 years ago

    Thx charles, internet in my country is very expensive. win 10 is just like bandwidth killer for me.
    By disabling windows update it helped me alot. thank so much charles

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  15. win10 4 years ago

    this settings is a for windows 7.

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  16. denny 3 years ago

    wouldnt it be easier to just go to computer management, services, and just 'disable' windows update?

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    • denny 3 years ago

      missed the above by charles, same idea just different way to get there.

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  17. Author
    Michael Pietroforte 3 years ago

    deeny, yes. I mentioned it as one option in my article about disabling Windows Update in Windows 10 RTM. However, you should know that disabling the Windows Update service breaks some Windows features. And often you don't know that the disabled Windows Update service is the culprit. For example, some modern apps such as the Calendar will just crash without error message.

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  18. mohamed kamil 3 years ago

    Windows is not allowing to make any changes in the IsConvergedUpdateStackEnabled key at all.

    any suggestions?

    5+

  19. Martin 3 years ago

    Thank you master, it works!

    5+

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