Have you seen that message in Windows 8 that tells you your computer is going to reboot and there is not a thing you can do about it except save your work? Here’s how to make sure that never happens again. This tip works for Windows 7 as well.

Note that we have covered this method before for preventing Windows 7 from automatically rebooting. This article has two methods for doing the same thing.

Prevent Windows 8 From Restarting Your PC After Windows Updates

Press the Win + R keyboard combination to bring up the run dialog then type gpedit.msc and press enter.

When the Local Group Policy Editor opens, navigate to:

Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows Update

On the right hand side you will see a setting titled:

No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic updates installations

Double click on it.

From here you will need to enable the setting by changing the radio button from “Not Configured” to “Enabled”, then clicking apply.

As always, we recommend you force a Group Policy update so that the changes will reflect immediately.

That’s all there is to it.

Using the Registry

If your version of Windows 8 doesn’t ship with the Group Policy editor, you can always use the registry to disable these reboots. Again press the Windows + R keyboard combination to bring up a run box — type regedit then hit enter.

Now navigate to:


Note: If you don’t see the Windows Update or AU keys you may have to create them.

Then create a new 32-bit DWORD called NoAutoRebootWithLoggedOnUsers.

Then double click on it and give it a hex value of 1.

Reboot your machine and you’re good to go!

Profile Photo for Taylor Gibb Taylor Gibb
Taylor Gibb is a professional software developer with nearly a decade of experience. He served as Microsoft Regional Director in South Africa for two years and has received multiple Microsoft MVP (Most Valued Professional) awards. He currently works in R&D at Derivco International.
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