Controlling Updates

How to defer cumulative updates on Windows 10

You can prevent cumulative updates from being installed on your device for up to 30 days, and here's how to do it.

Defer quality updates on the Windows 10 Creators Update

Starting with the Creators Update, Windows 10 includes a new option to defer updates from being installed on your device. Although, updates are important, the ability to “pause updates” is a welcome addition as many times rollouts don’t work as expected. Usually, when new cumulative updates release, there are reports from users coming across errors and other problems after installing on Windows 10.

The only caveat is that the option only let you temporarily defer updates up to 7 days, and sometimes if an update is known to be buggy, it can take longer than a week to get it fixed.

Fortunately, the Windows 10 Creators Update has a hidden alternative option to defer cumulative updates (those updates you get every month) up to 30 days using Group Policy and the Registry.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to pause cumulative updates on the Windows 10 Creators Update from being installed for up to 30 days.

How to defer cumulative updates using Group Policy

If you’re using Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise or Education, you can use the Local Group Policy editor to defer quality update from being installed on your computer for up to 30 days.

To delay or pause updates for a longer period on Windows 10, do the following:

  1. Open Start.

  2. Search for gpedit.msc and press Enter to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

  3. Browse the following path

     Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update
  4. Double-click the Defer Windows Updates container.

    Defer Windows Updates
    Defer Windows Updates
  5. Double-click the Select when Quality Updates are received policy.

    Quality updates settings
    Quality updates settings
  6. Select the Enabled option.

  7. Under “Options”, enter the number of days to defer after a quality update is released.

    Defer quality updates on Windows 10
    Defer quality updates on Windows 10
    Quick Tip: If you specify a starting date, your computer will defer updates for up to 35 days.
  8. Click Apply.

  9. Click OK.

Once you completed the steps, your device will not download and install updates for 30 days, but if you disable telemetry, this policy will not take effect.

If you want to revert the changes, you can follow the same steps, but on step No. 6, select the Not Configured option.

How to defer cumulative updates using Registry

On Windows 10 Home, you won’t have access to the Local Group Policy editor, but you can pause cumulative updates up to 30 days using the Registry.

Warning: It’s very important to note that modifying the Windows Registry can cause serious problems if not used properly. It’s assumed you know what you’re doing and you have created a full backup of your system before proceeding.

To defer or pause updates for a longer period on Windows 10, do the following:

  1. Open Start.

  2. Search for regedit, and click the result to open the Registry.

  3. Browse the following path:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsUpdate\UX\Settings
  4. Inside “Settings”, double-click the DWORD DeferQualityUpdatesPeriodInDays.

  5. In the “Value data” field, enter a number between 0 to 30 representing the number of days you want to defer quality updates.

    Defer quality updates period in days
    Defer quality updates period in days
  6. Click OK.

After you’ve completed the steps, your computer won’t receive new updates for up to 30 days after they release.

At any time, you can revert the changes by following the same steps, but on step No. 5, change the value data to 0.

Remember that this option is only to temporarily defer cumulative updates, if you want to prevent your device from installing feature updates (e.g., Anniversary Update, Creators Update, etc.), you should be using these options.