How to Prevent Windows 10 Auto-Restart – New Instructions (Oct 2019)

Windows 10 auto restart after the update is somewhat of an annoyance and Microsoft is well aware of the user resentment. However, because they refuse to provide any solution, nor address user complains (just read the discussion thread), here is a simple way to disable Windows 10 Auto-Restarts after the patching update. 

Note: This workaround works as of mid-Oct 2019

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Open Windows Explorer and navigate to C:\Windows\System32\Tasks\Microsoft\Windows\UpdateOrchestrator; or alternatively, in Windows search type in:
    %windir%\System32\Tasks\Microsoft\Windows\UpdateOrchestrator
  • Once in the UpdateOrchestrator folder, you’ll see something like this. There are 3 files we care about, namely: Reboot, Reboot_AC and Reboot_Battery. You may not have all three of these files, some systems come with Reboot only, others come with Reboot_AC and Reboot_Battery.
  • To disable Windows auto-restarts we’ll need to rename the above files.
    – If your system only comes with a Reboot file, right-click on the Reboot file and select Rename. Change the file name to Reboot.backup.
    – If your system only comes with a Reboot_AC and Reboot_Battery files, then rename both files to Reboot_AC.backup and Reboot_Battery.backup
    When renaming: If you’ll see the prompt that you need to provide administrator permission, just press the ‘Continue’ button.
  • When all of the files above are renamed, create a new folder called Reboot
  • Once everything is done, this is what the result should look like

To explain how this works. Windows 10 is accessing Reboot, Reboot_AC and Reboot_Battery files after every update to restart the computer. Once the files are renamed, the scheduled restart task will not be able to accomplish the auto restart, simply because the files that handle the reboot are now renamed :)

I suggest monitoring the UpdateOrchestrator directory (C:\Windows\System32\Tasks\Microsoft\Windows\UpdateOrchestrator) from time to time, so as to make sure Microsoft update is not placing the original copies back into this directory.

Enjoy and leave me a note if you found this helpful.

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