Curtiss Howard

Disabling Automatic Updates in Windows 10


Windows 10 has a fairly aggressive automatic update policy and the knobs and levers required to change it are well-hidden. While I think this is a good idea for average consumers, it frequently causes problems with my VM that includes GPU passthrough – automatic update restarts seem to bypass the scripts that disable the GPU upon shutdown and problems ensue.

Here's what I've been doing to disable automatic updates and restarts – but note that these steps only work in Windows 10 Professional or higher editions:

Changing Automatic Update Behavior

Open the Local Group Policy Editor by running gpedit.msc. Then, navigate to Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update and select Configure Automatic Updates. Select the Enabled radio button and choose the desired behavior from the Options dropdown. I usually select 2 - Notify for download and notify for install.

Disabling Automatic Restarts

In the same section of the Local Group Policy Editor, select No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic updates installations and then select the Enabled radio button.