There’s another major Windows update in the wild, and if you’ve struck out with the OS’s last year of updates, you might want to pass for a while. Here’s how you do that.
For those running Windows 10 Pro, you’ve got one main choice for dealing with the latest November patch, which is titled version 1909. The Windows Update page in Settings has a button to let you pause all updates for up to 7 days, but if you want to hold onto things for a bit longer just in case, there’s an option that will let you pause all feature and quality patches for a full year.
To find those options, head to Settings in Windows 10, either by typing Settings into the Start menu, or by right-clicking on the Start menu and selecting Settings from there. From there, you can click on the Update & Security page, where you’ll probably see something similar to this:
From here, click on the Advanced Options button at the bottom, which brings up this page:
If you want to “temporarily pause updates”, you’ll be able to hold those off for 35 days. After that point, Windows will force you to update before you can pause updates again.
However, there’s another option. At the very bottom, where it says “Choose when updates are installed”, you can set a day limit on how long feature updates and quality updates can be deferred from. You can set both of these to 365 days if you want, although most people will want security updates a lot sooner than that, and even the mainline Windows 10 feature improvements are usually good after a few months. If you’re still running Windows 10 version 1809, you’ll be able to defer the feature updates for a whole year and a half.
But what if you’re on Windows 10 Home? Your best option is to use a toggle in the Advanced Options for Windows Update for metered connections. In short, the toggle tells Windows whether it’s allowed to download updates over “metered connections” (like your mobile phone, if you were tethering off that). If it’s not enabled, then Windows won’t download feature updates over any connection that’s earmarked as “metered”.
So all you have to do from this point is set your network connection as “metered”, which you can do from the Network & Internet page. Simply pick the network connection that’s currently active, and flip the toggle to mark it as a metered connection.
This way, you’ll be able to halt updates on any version of Windows 10. Just note that the second option may also have other effects on Windows services that sync online, like OneDrive, Microsoft Store apps, or games through the Xbox app (like those you’d download from Xbox Game Pass).