How to stop Windows 10 from installing automatically

Microsoft recently started automatically scheduling upgrades to Windows 10 for some users.

This was after the software giant pushed the update to users on older versions of its operating system as a “recommended update”.

The Internet Society in China has accused Microsoft of abusing its dominant market position and breaking “the market order for fair play”.

Reports suggest that some users have even taken the drastic step of disabling critical updates to avoid downloading the Windows 10 upgrade.

This may leave your PC open to attack if you don’t manually install security updates.

If you do not want to install Windows 10, you can use one of the workarounds detailed below.

Windows 10 automatically scheduled update

Hide the upgrade notification

If you haven’t registered for and claimed your Windows 10 upgrade, you can hide the upgrade notification.

The instructions are detailed on Microsoft’s support site.

  • Right-click the Taskbar, and then select Properties.
  • On the Taskbar tab, go down to the Notification area and select Customize.
  • In the Notification Area Icons window, for the GWX icon, select Hide icon and notifications.

Windows 10 disable GWX notifications

Unschedule your update

The above measures only work if you haven’t registered for and scheduled your update.

Microsoft also provides instructions for how to cancel your upgrade to Windows 10.

  • Click on the “Get Windows 10” icon.


Windows 10 cancel scheduled upgrade step 1

  • Follow the instructions to reschedule or cancel your Windows 10 upgrade

Windows 10 cancel scheduled upgrade step 2

  • Confirm that you want to cancel your Windows 10 upgrade.

Windows 10 cancel scheduled upgrade step 3

  • A final reminder will also appear 15 minutes before the scheduled upgrade. This is a chance to cancel your Windows 10 upgrade before your system reboots automatically.

Windows 10 automatic upgrade - last chance to cancel

Install Never10

Microsoft has also released instructions on how to comprehensively disable the Windows 10 update with a series of commands and registry tweaks.

Never10 offers a convenient way to implement Microsoft’s instructions. It is free, and may be downloaded from the website of Gibson Research Corporation.

Never10 screenshots

If Never10 isn’t hardcore enough, try GWX Control Panel

If you don’t trust following Microsoft’s recommendations, you can try GWX Control Panel.

It is available from the Ultimate Outsider website, and promises to constantly monitor your PC for attempts to upgrade it to Windows 10.

GWX Control Panel

Switch to Linux

There are many distributions of Linux available, one of which may suit your needs.

Use Linux

Buy a Mac

If you never want to use Windows 10 in the future, an Apple Mac PC or notebook may be the solution.

Apple Macbooks

The new features coming to Windows 10

Massive backlash against Windows 10 update

This is what the new Windows Explorer icon looks like

Microsoft “tricks” users into upgrading to Windows 10

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How to stop Windows 10 from installing automatically