I have disabled Windows Update on my laptop(HP Pavilion 15-e072nr) since forever, but when I wanted to shut down my laptop today, I saw that Windows had planned to update at shutdown anyway. Ie. the Windows Update icon is showing on the shutdown button. I just checked my settings in Control Panel, and Windows Update is still disabled like it always was. Does Windows completely ignore its user's preferences regarding Updates nowadays or something? This has never happened to me before. Is it possible to definitely cancel this update? Postponing it to the next shutdown every time is quite a bit of an annoyance. I'm on Windows 8.1.

Thanks for the help!

  • To the best of my knowledge: there are some windows update that are deemed to be critical that Microsoft will insist on updating. Fully rejecting Windows Update usually can be done on a corporate set up. So if you have Windows 8.1 home, most likely you can't 100% reject Windows update. All in all, it is for your own safety that windows get updates. If I miss the mark - please let me know. – Darius Mar 1 '17 at 9:46
  • @Darius So you just can't cancel certain updates? Well screw me sideways.. If I would have never connected my laptop to the internet, I wouldn't have had the update, then how crucial can it actually be? I get the reasoning for enabling Update for safety reasons, but I have my reasons not to do so.. (and no, it's not a pirated version..) Thanks for the comment though. – Bart Mar 1 '17 at 9:54
  • If you never connected your laptop to internet - then yes you most likely never needed any update. But there most likely some vulnerabilities that can be exploited by simply having your Windows machine connected to the internet - and that's it you are infected. I understand you do not wanted to update windows for whatever reason (a lot of corporate also often refuse due to compatibility issues with software) - so whatever your reasons are, if having a stable windows without updates is paramount, then don't ever let it connect to internet. – Darius Mar 1 '17 at 9:59
  • @Darius Onfortunately, I have to connect to the internet every now and then. I'd rather cancel the update and go on with my current installation. If it gets infected i'll reinstall Windows entirely, i've backed up my data elsewhere anyway. I guess shutting it down with Win-X or in the alt-F4 menu will still shut down with updates? Normally you can postpone it there... – Bart Mar 1 '17 at 10:08
  • See my answer, if the shield does not go away, then you may have to restart the explorer process itself, or once shut down using "shutdown -r -t 0" to restart or "shutdown -s -t 0" to turn off the pc. – LPChip Mar 1 '17 at 10:38

There are a few methods to disable Windows Updates.

The best approach that will stop windows update from working (which should also work at home versions) is by disabling the Windows Update services.

You can stop them, which will disable them only for this windows session, but if you want to prevent them from starting, you also have to set the startup type to disabled. This way, the service cannot be started, and I use this technique since forever on locations where I want to control Windows Update myself.

Do note, in order to start Windows Update, so you can manually check for updates, You first have to set the startup of the service to Manual or Automatic, then start the service itself.

Also, keep in mind that although the process initiates windows update, there may also be an additional process running (this in case you have a "I will reboot your computer in xxx minutes" and there seems nothing you can do to stop it. The process is called Windows Update and is hard to miss.)

Note: This change requires administrative privileges.

  • Thanks for the answer. Windows Update was already completely disabled in both Control Panel/SystemSecurity and in Services.msc. It has always worked for me also, until now. I restarted Explorer.exe, which didn't help. I'm afraid that shutting it down via cmd still doesn't prevent the updates from installing, is it also an option to force shutdown it with the power button, or pulling out the battery, or will the updates install at startup then? – Bart Mar 1 '17 at 11:13
  • Pressing the powerbutton for 5 seconds will definitely bypass the installing of updates. But it really should not be updating. Is it possible that you have a second account on your laptop, or a program running that could initiate windows updates through a different means? – LPChip Mar 1 '17 at 11:21
  • Well than that would be a temporary solution. Yes indeed that's why i'm confused that Windows still tries to update. I only use the built-in Administrator account. There is no other account. – Bart Mar 1 '17 at 11:51
  • Also, are you really sure it are windows updates? Programs like the virusscanner and Microsoft Office get updated through Windows Update, and they may be able to start the process without using the service. – LPChip Mar 1 '17 at 13:22
  • How can I check what kind of updates it concerns? The shutdown button shows the Windows Update icon as seen in Control Panel, not the shield with an exclamation mark as also often seen. I'm using Avast Free AntiVirus, and Office 2013. I have disabled Windows Defender and SmartScreen. Is there a way to check what kind of updates Windows is trying to install? – Bart Mar 1 '17 at 13:56

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