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Windows 10 basics: How to stop updates

Windows 10 updates that Microsoft regularly sends to your system are designed to keep your operating system up to date. They are mostly a good thing. However, very occasionally, an update can go wrong, which is why some Windows users prefer to postpone updates for a week or two to make sure the update does not come with problems. In addition, updates sometimes come at an inconvenient time – for example, when you are in the middle of a project with a tight deadline.

You can’t stop updates completely, but you can pause them. If you do not want to install updates or would rather keep in case of any errors, here is how to adjust your settings.

Pause updates

  • Click the Start button.
  • Click the gear to open settings.
  • Open Update and Security.
  • You must be on the Windows Update page. If you do not, click “Windows Update” on the left.

  • If you have pending updates, you will find them listed at the top. Otherwise you will be told that you are up to date. Scroll down to see a button that says “Pause updates for 7 days.” Click it to prevent your device from being updated for a week.
  • The Windows Update page now tells you that your updates are paused. If you like, you can continue to click “Pause updates for 7 more days” to postpone updates for additional weeks. (I could pause for up to five weeks). You can click “Resume Updates” towards the top of the screen to undo this.

  • If you would like to pause updates up to a specific date, click “Advanced Settings” at the bottom of the page. Scroll down to “Pause updates.” Here you can select a date to stop updating until. Note: You can only pause updates for up to 35 days, after which you will need to update your device before you can stop the updates again.

Adjust restart times

Windows will usually need to restart to finish installing updates – and since an update can take your computer out of business anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours, you may be able to adjust the restart times to when it’s most convenient.

  • If an update is available, you will see it at the top of the screen. If you do not see an update available, click “Check for Updates” at the top of the Windows Update menu to make sure.
  • If updates are ready, you can click “Restart Now” to restart immediately (and get it over with). If you assume you do not want to do so, click “Schedule Restart” to complete the installation later.

Window update menu when a restart is needed

You will see a “Restart Now” button towards the top of the screen next to “Schedule Restart.”

  • Change “Schedule a time” from even.
  • Choose time and date. Don’t forget to click the check box at the bottom of the drop-down list to save the selected time.

You must activate the switch at the top before selecting a time and date.

  • If you return to the Windows Update page and click Advanced Settings, you can switch between several update options, including “Show a notification when your PC requires a restart to finish the update” and “Restart this device as soon as possible when a reboot is required to install an update. “

The screen

Here you can choose to turn on notification notifications and restart when an update is available.

Windows, if you choose, can track when you use your device to schedule a restart update at an appropriate time. You can use this feature, called active timer, to adjust the times your device is allowed to restart.

  • In Windows Update, go to “Change active hours.”
  • You can turn on “Automatically adjust the active hours for this device based on activity.”
  • You can set your own active hours by clicking the “Change” link next to the current active hours.

You can have Windows set the active hours based on your activity, or you can set them yourself.

  • Adjust the times in the pop-up window and click “Save”.

Pop-up window with active hours

Set your own active hours by adjusting the time in this window.

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