Even when you think you have closed an app on your Windows 11 computer, some of them keep running in the background. They could be running to fetch or send data from the server, collect system information, or perform some other tasks.
But the fact is that background apps not only use precious memory resources but also drain battery life if you are using a laptop computer. And no one likes that. Fortunately, you can easily turn off background usage of apps using various methods on your computer. Moreover, you can also turn it off on a per-app basis, system-wide, or even for all users created on the machine.
1. Disable Background Apps on a Per-App Basis
If a particular app is hogging a lot of memory for an extended period of time even after being closed or you simply do not wish to have an app running in the background, this method will be most suited for you.
First, head to the Start Menu and click on the ‘Settings’ app icon.
After that, make sure you have selected the ‘Apps’ tab from the left sidebar to continue.
Next, click on the ‘Installed apps’ tile to proceed.
After that, navigate to the app, and click on the ‘ellipsis’ icon. Then, click on the ‘Advanced options’ from the menu.
On the next screen, click on the drop-down menu and select the ‘Never’ option to never let the app run in the background.
And that’s it. You have successfully disabled the background app usage. To turn it off for other apps as well, repeat the above-mentioned steps.
2. Use Registry Editor to Disable Background App Usage for All Users
If you wish to turn off the background app usage for all the apps, you can simply tweak a registry setting on your computer.
To do so, first, head to the Start Menu and type Registry Editor to perform a search. Then, from the search results, click on the ‘Registry Editor’ tile to continue.
After that, type or copy+paste the below-mentioned location in the address bar and press Enter to navigate to the file.
Afterward, right-click on the ‘Windows’ key and hover over the ‘New’ option. Then, click on the ‘Key’ option from the menu. Then, rename the file to
Next, right-click on the newly created key and hover over the ‘New’ option, and then click on the ‘DWORD’ option from the menu.
Now, rename the file to
LetAppsRuninBackground and double-click on it to configure.
Finally, change the ‘Value’ field to
2 and click on ‘OK’ to save the changes. Once the file is successfully saved, restart your computer to let the changes take effect.
3. Disable Background App Using the Group Policy Editor
Another method to disable background apps is by using the Group Policy Editor.
Note: This method only applies to users who have the Windows Pro version.
First, head to the Start Menu and type
Group Policy to perform a search. Then, from the search results, click on the ‘Edit group policy’ tile to continue.
After that, expand the ‘Computer Configuration’ section and then double-click on the ‘Administrative Templates’ section.
Then, double-click on the ‘Windows Components’ section.
After that, expand the ‘App Privacy’ section.
Next, locate and double-click on the ‘Let apps run in the background’ configuration file.
Now, click on the radio button preceding the ‘Disabled’ option and then click on the ‘Apply’ and ‘OK’ buttons.
4. Disable ‘High’ Impact Startup Apps
There are many apps that are launched and minimized as soon as you log in to your Windows user account. Typically these are apps that handle critical services like audio, antivirus, and touchpad gestures. However, many times some non-essential apps can also creep into the list and keep running in the background unnecessarily.
First, head to the Start Menu and type
Task Manager to perform a search. Then, from the search results, click on the ‘Task Manager’ tile.
After that, make sure you have selected the ‘Startup apps’ tab from the left sidebar.
Now, identify the apps present in the list that are not essential and have the ‘Startup Impact’ listed as ‘High’ and click to select them. Even if the impact is not high but the app has no business to start as soon as you log in, select it too. After that, click on the ‘Disable’ option to disable the app.
Once disabled, selected apps will not start in the background the next time you log in to your device.
5. Disable Background App Usage on their Battery Usage
If you are experiencing reduced battery life on your laptop computer, you can simply check the app using the most battery in the background from the ‘Power & battery’ settings and can simply turn it off from right there.
First, head to the Start Menu and click on the ‘Settings’ icon to continue.
After that, make sure you have selected the ‘System’ tab from the left sidebar to proceed.
Then, from the right section, locate and click on the ‘Power & battery’ tile.
After that, click on the ‘Battery usage’ tile to reveal the battery usage per-app section. Next, check the app using the most battery in the background.
Once located, click on the ‘ellipsis’ icon and then click on the ‘Manage background activity’ option from the list.
Now, click on the drop-down menu on the next page, and select the ‘Never’ option from the list to completely revoke the background usage permissions for the app.
And that’s it, you have restricted the most battery-hungry app on your computer from running in the background.
There you go, people. If you have been facing extensive battery drain or too much resource hogging from a particular app/set of apps, you can easily disable their background usage by following the above-mentioned steps.