How to Stop Windows 11 Update from Installing on your Windows 10 PC

Computer OS Update and Install

Everything you need to know to block the Windows 11 update on your PC.

Since Oct 5, Microsoft has begun gradually rolling out Windows 11 upgrades to eligible Windows 10 devices for free. If you are using Windows 10 on an eligible device, it is probably available to your right now in the Windows Update. Although Microsoft has announced that it won’t force users to upgrade to Windows 11, it will get pushier as we get closer to Windows 10’s end of service.

If your device meets Windows 11’s minimum requirements, Microsoft will automatically push free Windows 11 update to your Windows 10 PC through Windows Update once it becomes available for you. If you are not ready to make the switch and want to block the Windows 11 upgrade from installing on your Windows 10 PC, we are here to help.

Why You Shouldn’t Upgrade to Windows 11 Just Yet

Windows 11 is not perfect and not much of a bigger improvement than Windows 10 except in aesthetics. Since Windows 11 is relatively new, just like any other Windows operating system when they were newly released, it has its bugs, problems, and potential security risks.

Although Windows 10 on the other hand isn’t completely bug-free, it has been 5 years since it was released, so most of its bugs and problems have been fixed over the years. So it’s better to wait until Windows 11 bugs and other issues are fixed before you upgrade to it. 

Besides, Windows 11 requires higher hardware requirements than any other Windows operating system before. For instance, Windows 11 needs 4GB RAM and 64GB hard disk space, which is double the RAM and storage space required to run Windows 10.

Although Windows 11 offers some new features like Game Mode, Widgets, faster boot time, and android support, it may not be enough justification to install it.

That being said, Microsoft gives an option to easily roll back to the previous Windows version within 10 days after installing Windows 11. So you can upgrade to Windows 11 and try it, if you don’t like it, you can roll back to Windows 10 or other versions within 10 days. If you want to know how to do that, check out another article on how to upgrade to Windows 11 from Windows 10 and downgrade to Windows 10.

How to Stop the Windows 11 Update in Windows 10

Although Microsoft promises that Windows 11 won’t be pushed forcefully to Windows 10 computers and that users can decide if they want to upgrade or not. But this might change in the future. So whether you want to resist the Windows 11 update permanently or only temporarily, we can help you do that. There are several ways you can block Windows 11 updates using Windows update, Registry editor, or Group policy editor.

Stop Windows 11 Upgrade Temporarily via Windows Update

The easiest way to block Windows 11 updates is to simply delay the download and installation of Windows 11 in Windows Update or stay away from Windows Update altogether.

Open Settings by clicking the ‘Start’ menu and selecting the ‘Settings’ option or with the shortcut Windows+I.

On the Settings app, click on the ‘Update & Security’ Tile.

On the Update and Security Settings page, select the ‘Windows Update’ option on the left panel. If Windows 11 upgrade is ready for you, you’ll see an ‘Upgrade to Windows 11 is ready’ message (upgrade invitation). Below the message, you will also see an option to download and install the update as well as an option to ignore it as shown below. Sometimes this won’t appear unless you manually check for updates by clicking the ‘Check for updates’ button.

Now, simply click the ‘Stay on Windows 10 for now’ option to ignore the Windows 11 update.

This will keep the upgrade invitation from showing up again, at least for a few weeks. But this is only temporary, the upgrade option will appear again and prompt you to install it.

The Windows 11 upgrade is optional for Windows 10 systems for now, but it may become mandatory in the future. You can also pause updates to prevent Windows 11 updates. In the Windows update page, click on ‘Pause updates for 7 days’ to block updates for 7 days.

This will pause or stop updates temporarily for 7 days. If you want to pause updates 7 more days, click ‘Pause updates for 7 more days’. By this, you can pause the updates from being installed on this device for up to 35 days before. After that, you will need to get new updates before you can pause again.

By doing this, the updates will be paused or stopped temporarily for 7 days. You can also change the period (here 7 days) to your desire by going through the advanced options in the Windows Update Window. You can also resume the update whenever you prefer to do.

You can also click the ‘Advanced options’ to change the pause period.

Then, change the pause period with the drop-down under the Pause updates section.

This method only temporarily blocks the Windows 11 update on your PC. But if you want a permanent solution, try any of the following methods.

Stop Windows 11 Update by Turning Off Windows Update Service

If you want to block Windows 11 update permanently in Windows 10, turning off the entire Windows update service is one way to go about it. But keep in mind that disabling this service will also prevent your system from getting feature and security updates. Here’s how you do this:

First, click on the search button on the taskbar and type ‘Services’ in the search bar. Then select the ‘Services’ app from the search result.

Alternatively, you can press Windows+R, type services.msc in the Run utility, and hit Enter to open the Windows Services.

In the Services window, scroll down the list of services and locate ‘Windows Update’. Once you found it double-click on it.

This will open the Windows update properties dialog box. Here, click the ‘Stop’ button under Services status to stop the service.

Then, choose ‘Disabled’ from the Startup type drop-down and click the ‘Apply’ button.

All updates will be stopped including Windows 11 update. If you want to re-enable the Windows Update, choose ‘Automatic’ or ‘Manual’ and then click ‘Apply’.

Block Windows 11 Update using Registry Editor

The above method blocks all the updates to your Windows 10 PC including necessary updates like security and cumulative update patches for your operating systems and other programs. So if you want to block only the feature upgrade to Windows 11, you can use the new ‘TargetReleaseVersion’ policy or registry setting introduced by Microsoft.

With Windows 10 version 1803, Microsoft Microsoft has introduced a setting or policy called ‘TargetReleaseVersion’, which allows users to specify the target feature upgrade for Windows 10 you would like your computer to move to and/or stay with until that version reaches the end of service.

You can set the target feature upgrade version to the current or a newer version of Windows 10 to ensure that you stayed on a specific version of Windows 10. For instance, most of the current Windows 10 computers use version 21H1 or 20H2, so can set your target version of Windows 10 to 21H1 or 20H2 or the latest version Windows 10 21H2 (which started rolling out Nov 16, 2021). Let’s see how to do this:

Before we start, let’s check your Windows 10 version. To do that, open Settings, search for ‘About you PC’ in the search bar, and select the result.

Then scroll down to the ‘Windows specifications’ and check your Windows version. As you can see below, this system is on Windows 10 version 21H1.

Now, you can either lock down your Windows 10 PC to the current version or upgrade to a newer version of Windows 10 (But not Windows 11).

Now, follow these steps to set the target Windows 10 version to block Windows 11 upgrade:

Open up the Run window by pressing Win+R and typing regedit, and hit Enter to open Registry Editor.

Then, navigate to the following location either using the left navigation pane or copying the below path to the address bar of the Registry editor:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows

Now, find the ‘WindowsUpdate’ key (folder) under the Windows folder in the left pane. If you don’t find it you need to create one by right-clicking the ‘Windows’ key and selecting ‘New’ > ‘Key’.

Then, rename the key to WindowsUpdate.

Next, right-click on the ‘Windows Update’ key or on the right pane and select ‘New’ > ‘DWORD (32-bit) Value’ to create a new registry setting.

Then, rename the newly created Dword to TargetReleaseVersion and then double-click on it and set its value to 1. Then, click ‘OK’.

Now, create a new string by right-clicking the WindowsUpdate or on the right pane and selecting ‘New’ > ‘String’.

Next, rename the string to ProductVersion.

Then, set the value data of ‘ProductVersion’ to the Windows OS you want to stay on. In this case, Windows 10.

After that, create another string value by right-clicking on the right pane and selecting ‘New’ > ‘String’. Then, rename it to TargetReleaseVersionInfo and set its value to the desired version you want to upgrade to or stay with. For instance, this PC is currently on ‘Windows 10 Version 21H1’, so we are setting the value data to 21H1. You can see the list of Windows 10 versions that are still serviced by Microsoft with this link.

You can replace 21H1 with your current or a newer version of Windows 10. With Windows 10 21H2 (the latest version) is starting to roll out, you can also set the value data of ‘TargetReleaseVersionInfo’ to 21H2 to upgrade your system to the latest version of Windows 10.

If Microsoft releases a new version of the OS, you will have to update the value data to get the latest Windows 10 upgrades. Even if the latest version is not pushed to you yet, doing this will upgrade your PC to the latest feature update version of Windows 10.

You can now close Registry Editor and restart your computer to apply the changes.

Now, the Windows 11 update has been successfully blocked from being installed on your computer. Even if you check for updates in the Windows Update settings, Microsoft will not push Windows 11 upgrade to you. If you ever decide to upgrade to Windows 11, simply delete the above registries and try checking for updates.

Block Windows 11 Update using Group Policy Editor

Another way to block Windows 11 from being downloaded and installed on your Windows 10 PC is through Group Policy Editor. However, the Local Group Policy Editor tool is only available for Professional, Enterprise, and the Education editions of Windows 10 but not for the Home edition. If you want to block Windows 11 update on your Windows 10 Home edition, use above registry method. Here’s how you block Windows 11 upgrade using Group Policy Editor:

Open the Run window and type gpedit.msc and hit Enter to open Local Group Policy Editor. Or you can search for ‘Edit Group Policy’ in the Windows search and open it.

Then navigate to the following location in the left navigation panel of the Local Group Policy Editor:

Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Windows Update for Business

Then, double-click on the ‘Select the target Feature Update version’ policy in the right of the Windows Update for Business folder to edit.

Now, set the policy to ‘Enabled’.

After it’s enabled, enter the below values to the Options:

  • Set ‘Which Windows product version would you like to receive feature updates for?’ – Windows 10.
  • Set ‘Target version of Feature updates’ – 21H1 or 21H2.

In the product version field, enter the OS version. We want to say on the Window 10 OS, so we entered Windows 10. For the ‘Target version of Feature updates‘ field, enter the value of the desired feature update version you want to upgrade to or stay with. You can set this option to 21H1 or 21H2 (latest version) or any other specific version. In this PC, we want to upgrade to Windows 10 version 21H2 (and not beyond that), so we entered 21H2.

Then, click ‘Apply’ to save the changes and then click ‘OK’ to close the dialog box. You can now close Local Group Policy Editor and restart your computer to apply the changes. This will force the Window to install feature updates for the specified version if it doesn’t already have it.

This will also prevent your system from installing any Windows version beyond the specified version (including Windows 11).

If you ever want to upgrade to Windows 11, select ‘Not configured’ or ‘Disabled’ for the above policy and click ‘Apply’. Then, restart your system and check for updates.

That’s it.