Ever since I have bought windows 8, I have had stupid notifications of

Do you want to update to windows 8.1

That was fine.

But now for some reason, it says "Finish updating to windows 8.1, your PC will be restarting in X hours to start installation". There is no cancel button, it only selects a time to install (up to 4 hours from now), and to avoid clicking install I have to restart the computer. Which is horribly frustrating.

I would love to get a screenshot, but when it comes up everything else is blocked and non-useable.

How can I disable these forced-update things?

  • First the upgrade to 8.1 is optional so at some point you confirmed you wanted to download the update. Why are you against installing an update that makes Windows 8 more usable?
    – Ramhound
    Nov 14, 2014 at 10:57
  • Why would you not want to update? That message indicates that the update is already partially installed. You may run into problems in the future.
    – rrirower
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:00
  • @rrirower Maybe because changing OS's resets all data on computers?
    – Joehot200
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:06
  • @Joehot200 - Since when? Doing an upgrade to 8.1 allows you to keep EVERYTHING EXACTLY how you have it. Its a 100% in-place upgrade. You lose no personal files, application settings, or installed desktop programs
    – Ramhound
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:10
  • @Ramhound I keep hearing of the update process going wrong and people losing their files. I don't want to take a risk to fix a non-broken thing. Especially as I have years of work on my computer.
    – Joehot200
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:11

1 Answer 1


It seems that you cannot cancel an scheduled automatic restart, but you can disable automatic restarts when you are logged on. This work from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 :

In registry base, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/Policies/Microsoft/Windows.

Create a key named WindowsUpdate if needed.

In this key create a DWORD Value named NoAutoRebootWithLoggedOnUsers and set it to 1.

From http://blog.laptopmag.com/disable-automatic-restart-windows

  • I would not recommend making registry changes manually without knowing the future implications.
    – rrirower
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:01
  • @Dric - How about post the relevant information from your link?
    – Ramhound
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:09
  • Not exactly what I wanted, but useful all the same.
    – Joehot200
    Nov 14, 2014 at 11:37
  • 1
    @rrirower This only disable the automatic restart when a user is logged on, but the updates are installed when the computer is restarted. This doesn't break anything, and disabling automatic restart should be a system option.
    – Dric
    Nov 26, 2014 at 13:28

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