How do I stop Windows 11 from installing?

Although Windows 11 can set up drivers for hardware without user interaction, sometimes, you may not want the system installing them automatically. For example, if the system keeps trying to install an incompatible version or a driver with a bug resulting in unwanted issues. Or you may want to stop Windows 11 from installing drivers automatically because there is a newer or older version that works betters on your device. 

Whatever the reason it might be, Windows 11 includes an option that lets you disable the ability to download and install device drivers automatically.

This guide will teach you the steps to change the settings and stop Windows 10 from automatically installing drivers on your computer.

  • Disable automatic driver install on Windows 11
  • Disable automatic driver install with Group Policy
  • Disable automatic driver install with Registry

To stop Windows 11 from installing device drivers automatically, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on About.

  3. Under the “Device specifications” section, click the Advanced system settings option.

  4. Click the Hardware tab.

  5. Click the “Device Installation Settings” button.

  6. Select the “No (your device might not work as expected)” option.

  7. Click the Save Changes button.

  8. Click the OK button.

Once you complete the steps, Windows 11 will no longer install drivers automatically for new devices. If you are adding a new graphics card or printer, you will need to download and install the drivers manually.

Disable automatic driver install with Group Policy

Alternatively, you can use the Local Group Policy Editor to stop the operating system from installing updates for drivers. However, this option is available only on Windows 11 Pro, Enterprise, and Education.

To disable driver installs automatically with Group Policy, use these steps:

  1. Open Start.

  2. Search for gpedit and click the top result to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

  3. Browse the following path:

    Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Manage updates offered from Windows Update
  4. Double-click the “Do not include driver with Windows Update” option.

  5. Check the Enabled option.

  6. Click the Apply button.

  7. Click the OK button.

After you complete the steps, the policy will enable, and Windows Update will stop providing drivers during updates.

Disable automatic driver install with Registry

If you use Windows 11 Home, you won’t have access to the Local Group Policy Editor. However, you can disable the feature through the Registry.

Warning: It’s essential 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 that you have created a full backup of your system before proceeding.

  1. Open Start.

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

  3. Browse the following path:

  4. Double-click the SearchOrderConfig DWORD key, and change its value from 1 to 0.

  5. Click OK.

  6. Restart the computer.

Once you complete the steps, setting SearchOrderConfig to 0 will block drivers from updating every time Windows 11 checks for new updates.

You can always revert the changes by using the same steps, but in step No. 4, change the DWORD key value from 0 to 1.

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How do I stop Windows 11 Update from installing in progress?

In the Settings window, click on Update & Security, and in the next window, select Windows Update from the left panel. Your screen should now display if Windows 11 is ready to be installed on your PC. If it is, you can click on Stay on Windows 10 for now. Alternatively, you can click on Pause updates for 7 days.

How do I permanently stop Windows 11 Update?

Double-click Windows Update service to open its properties window. Under General tab, next to Startup type option, you can click the drop-down icon to select Disabled option. Click Apply and click OK to apply the changes. In this way, it will permanently disable Windows 11 automatic updates.

Can I decline Windows 11?

Yes. You do not have to upgrade to Windows 11. Microsoft will continue to support Windows 10 until October 14, 2025. If I decline the upgrade, can I change my mind and upgrade later?

Can I pause Windows 11 installation?

You can pause automatic updates from happening for a set amount of time -- anywhere from one to five weeks..
Go to Settings..
Click on Windows Update..
Under More options, click the Pause updates dropdown to select the amount of time you'd like to pause your automatic updates..