You know that moment: the moment you lose you work because you saved a little too late, or completely forgot save. The moment you look down at your palms. It’s a terrible feeling, especially when your computer crashes. This is why if you’re writing something, do it using Google Docs.

Unfortunately, if you’re using Windows 10, you’re forced to restart when Microsoft decides an update is needed. Sure, you can set a schedule, but it’s unlikely you’ll remember what it was. And if you don’t set a schedule? Well, you’re completely SOL. Even if you do set a schedule, Windows will restart on you.

I was working on some headphone test sequences, which take a long time to setup, especially because the software I’m using is industrial, and I’m learning as I go. I had a friend over at my house to discuss some audio related things with, and we were going through the analysis of how things should be tested.

During a discussion, my back was turned towards the PC so I could talk about some concepts. Then I heard a beep. We paused for a second and my friend said “that sounded like a reboot.”

When I turned around, the PC had rebooted with a message saying “we’re installing updates for you.”

I lost my test sequence.

Microsoft, at what point did you think that keeping my Windows install updated was more vital than my work? If you really want me to update, keep annoying me with an update, and I’ll eventually get to it. Don’t just shut everything down and give the user no opportunity. This is about the stupidest thing I’ve seen in any operating system. It’s shocking that Microsoft still hasn’t removed automatic restarts as a default from Windows 10.

If you’re using Windows 10 Home, you’re out of luck. There is no way to disable the automatic reboot for updates. The only way you can get around it is to set your broadband connection to a metered connection. This prevents Windows from downloading updates automatically, and consequently won’t automatically reboot.

The only way to get around this on Windows 10 Home is to be on WiFi, and set your WiFi to a metered connection. What’s that? Well, some ISPs have monthly data caps. But here’s the problem. What if you’re using Ethernet? Nope. You can only turn on metered connection over WiFi.


If I am with an Internet service provide that is metering me, I am metered regardless of my connection to the ISP.

This is stupid.

On Windows 10 Pro, you can disable automatic reboots by going into the Local Group Editor > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Configure Automatic Updates.

Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 2.37.58 AM

In the above preference pane, check on Enabled. Once enabled, you can choose your options of how updates behave. This turns off the automatic restarts completely. Why this isn’t enabled by default is truly beyond me.

It’s also a really boneheaded move.

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