How to Prevent Windows 10 or 11 From Automatically Downloading Updates?

Dec 31, 2022
Updated • Dec 30, 2022
Windows, Windows 10, Windows 11 News

Most Windows users find the regular Windows 10 and 11 automatic updates frustrating. Thankfully, you can now control this and install all Windows updates as per your schedule. Read on to learn how to stop automatic updates from Windows 10 and 11.

Preventing Auto Update Download on a Specific Connection

If you set your connection as metered, Windows will not download updates automatically on this connection. By default, Windows sets cellular data and other connections as metered and does not download updates on such connections. You can now change any connection and set it as metered.

To do this, open your settings and click on network and internet and then wifi. Click the wifi name you're connected to and click on the switch that says 'set as metered connection.' You will find this on the properties page for Windows 10. For Windows 11, there will be a switch next to metered connection. While this setting only affects the current network you're on, Windows will remember this for all networks.

If you're on a wired network, open settings, head over to network and internet, and then click on ethernet. Click the name of your connection and enable the button under 'set as metered connection.'

When you enable this option, Windows will give a message stating that updates are available and it will be downloaded when you're connected to a wifi network. Marking a connection as metered tricks Windows into thinking you're using mobile data for your computer. You can then download and install all updates at your convenience.

Stop Automatic Rebooting

Some users don't have a problem with automatic downloads, they don't like their system restarting to bring updates into effect. This is where your active hours come in. When you set your active hours, Windows will not restart your system at that time.

To set active hours for Windows 10, go to settings and then click on update and security, and then windows update. Click on the change active hours option and set the time when you don't want your system to restart.

To set active hours for Windows 11, you need to head to settings and update and security and from there, click on advanced options. You can choose your active hours here.

Don’t Let Automatic Updates Frustrate You Anymore

Now that you know how to disable automatic updates, you should be able to enjoy your Windows 10 and 11 system without pesky updates causing your system to restart.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. just an Ed said on January 1, 2023 at 12:01 pm

    I only came for the comments. :-)

  2. ilev said on January 1, 2023 at 11:15 am

    No need of any of this.
    Just download free portable ‘StopWinUpdates’. Enable to stop. Disable to install.

    1. ilev said on January 1, 2023 at 11:17 am

      Sorry, I meant ‘Windows Update Blocker’

  3. that's the ticket said on January 1, 2023 at 3:22 am

    I don’t understand why so many computer users stick with a product (Windewz) they feel they have to protect themselves from. It’s nothing short of madness.

    Linux. That’s the ticket laddy.

    1. Haakon said on January 1, 2023 at 9:08 pm

      What’s a ticket laddy?

      Linux is just the way some make themselves sound important, better than you. It’s the progressive OS, more accurately written as “Linux.”

      “Linux”? Pft! BSD. That’s the ticket, laddy.

      The typical “Linux” poser is a clueless geek wannabe. As a Unix 5 admin, MCP and system builder having over two decades in the real world and almost 40 computer hobbyist years, I’m qualified to say that.

      I played with “Linux” since its STP and Knoppix (v1.6, 2001) days and gave up on it with Ubuntu 6 which was about the time where in “Linux” forums, nearly 99% of help solving an issue was “i wrote a script,” which never did anything for the “Linux” you were using other than presenting an error.

      There are over 600 distros of Linux. Easily tripled or quadrupled or more if you throw in all the “desktop” options.

      Over at DistroWatch, it’s “Put the fun back into computing.” The fun went out of mainstream computing a long time ago. Gaming the exception, of course, and serious gamers need… not “Linux.”

      I need to use my computer to pay/manage my bills, manage my bank accounts, credit cards, home and auto insurance, home mortgage, taxes, health care. And streaming services!! Go to Help in a device app and you’re pointed to their web site where you have to log in, the same place you need for changing your authentication or credit card. I’m not doing any of the above with some “fun” crap-shoot OS.

      The only value “Linux” presents to the Digital Age is entertainment. Especially if you play with the 50MB live DSL Linux distro.

      For the actual, expert users Linux out there, thank you for not injecting your self-importance into a Windows discussion.

    2. kalmly said on January 1, 2023 at 6:09 pm

      Here is one answer for you: All the great software is written for Windows.

  4. Mike said on January 1, 2023 at 2:51 am

    I have used Sordum Windows Update Blocker since Windows 10. It shuts off the services settings and protects them from being turned back on until you want to update. Does what Brian said but with a nice GUI interface.

  5. joyful n00se said on January 1, 2023 at 12:59 am

    How sad it must be, so pathetic, to have to protect yourself from the Operating System you have chosen. A virtual black box of spyware.

  6. boris said on December 31, 2022 at 5:45 pm

    I installed program called Reboot Blocker. No more unauthorized reboots. Windows updates only when I restart computer.

  7. Bryan said on December 31, 2022 at 5:36 pm

    I just disable the Services Windows Update and the Background Intelligent Transfer Service, under Administrative Tools.

    Very simple to do. Double click on the Service, stop the service, then disable the service.

    When enough time had passed, usually 6 months, I turn on Windows updates, let it update, then turn it back off for 6 months.

    I leave the Background Service off always. I will make time on my schedule to download and update.

    1. Mothy said on December 31, 2022 at 7:47 pm

      I do the same on Windows 8.1. However with Windows 10 (not sure about 11 as I have never used it but it’s most likely the same), eventually those services will re-enable themselves due to other services (ex. SIH Client, WaasMedic and Update Orchestrator) and related tasks that Microsoft has built into their “Windows as a service” model. They say it’s to ensure the health and operation of Windows Update. But it’s really about control over your system and being able to force updates on you whether you want them or not. To try to stop it you have to jump through a bunch of hoops and use third party tools and/or hacks to take back some control over the system and make it do what you want instead of Microsoft.

      Along with all the telemetry in Windows 10 is why I went back to Windows 8.1 that does not have any of this nonsense and still allows full control over updates. And why eventually I plan to move to Linux.

  8. Dave said on December 31, 2022 at 3:58 pm

    I have added all microsoft IPs to my pfsence block list and no longer am bothered with those spyware updates.

  9. Yuliya said on December 31, 2022 at 2:14 pm

    Actually, no, my “dear” softonic employee. You must go to Local Group Policy Editor > Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Configure Automatic Updates = Enabled (2 – Notify for download and auto install)
    Do the gHacks readers really have to teach you everything?

    1. royce said on December 31, 2022 at 7:38 pm

      You forgot to mention your suggestion only applies to Windows 10, within Windows 11 it’s different.
      Best is to disable all updates and when you are sure a new patch is safe do a selective installation.
      Hide the updates you do not want to install.

      1. Andy Prough said on January 1, 2023 at 1:07 am

        >”Local Group Policy Editor > Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Configure Automatic Updates = Enabled (2 – Notify for download and auto install)”

        >”only applies to Windows 10, within Windows 11 it’s different.
        Best is to disable all updates and when you are sure a new patch is safe do a selective installation.”

        Sure am glad I’m on GNU/Linux where it’s always a simple update & upgrade command, and nothing is ever done until you tell it to do it. Wow you Windows folks work way too hard. A computer is supposed to work for you, not against you.

      2. Derek Clements said on January 1, 2023 at 1:24 am

        Nicely put Andy – I couldn’t agree more.

  10. fck_m$hit said on December 31, 2022 at 1:25 pm

    best solution: install Linux

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