Disable these annoying Windows 10 settings


Are you using Windows 10? Now change these default settings.

Sarah Tew / topwatchbest

Microsoft Windows 11 it will be available to everyone compatible computers by mid-2022. (Here’s our guide to downloading a new operating system.) But as long as you’re using Windows 10, it’s worth it optimization of settings to make sure that PC works the best it can. We recommend that you disable some Windows 10 settings completely – for example, the ones that slow down your device, display tons of notifications and ads, and collect more information than is convenient for you.

You’ll want to spend only a few minutes familiarizing yourself with these settings and potentially disabling them for the sake of privacy, speed, and convenience. Here are eight settings that are turned on by default that you can turn off in Windows 10. (You can also check out some top Windows 10 tips and tricks and How to troubleshoot common Windows 10 problems.)

File sharing updates

An added feature of Windows 10 is optimized update delivery system which allows you to download updates from other Windows 10 computers over the Internet (not only from Microsoft’s servers). The catch is that your PC is also used as an update sharing center for other Windows 10 users.

This feature is turned on by default, but you can turn it off by going to Settings> Update and Security> Advanced Options> Delivery Optimization on and off Allow downloads from other computers.


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Annoying notifications

this Windows 10 Action Center is a handy central hub for all your notifications – apps, reminders, recently installed programs. But notification overload is definitely a thing, especially when you add unnecessary notifications (like Windows tips) to the mix.

To control notifications, go to Settings> System> Notifications and actions.

Turn off things like “Get tips, tricks and suggestions while using Windows” or “Show me a Windows greeting after updates and occasionally when I log in to highlight news and suggestions”, as well as any unwanted notifications from individual applications .


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Ads in the start menu

Microsoft makes its Windows Store apps available – so much so that you can see apps you’ve never downloaded in the Start menu. These suggested apps are basically ads.

Disable those pesky ads by going to Settings> Personalization> Start> Show suggestions in Start from time to time. For more information, check out ours Guide to the Windows 10 Start menu.


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Targeted advertising from third party applications

Microsoft definitely tracks your browsing preferences and habits on Windows 10. You even have a unique advertising ID (associated with your Microsoft account) that the company uses to display targeted advertising. Oh, and Microsoft also shares this Advertising ID profile with third-party Windows Store apps, unless you turn off information sharing.

You can turn off sharing of this type of information by going to Settings> Privacy> General> Allow apps to use the ad serving ID to show ads that interest you more based on your activity in the app (disabling this option will reset the ID).


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Cortana “gets to know you”

Cortana, your personal adaptive assistant on Windows 10, receives, well, the very personal information it collects about you, such as your speech and handwriting patterns, and your writing history, which you might find a little scary.

You can stop Cortana from “getting to know you” and remove this information from your device by going to Settings> Privacy> Inking and Writing and turning off the option.


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Background applications

In Windows 10, many applications run in the background by default – which means even if you don’t have them open. These applications can receive information, send notifications, download and install updates, and otherwise use your bandwidth and Your battery. If you are using a mobile device and / or tariff connectionyou can turn off this feature.

To do this, go to Settings> Privacy> Background apps and either turn it off Let applications run in the background or turn off each application separately.

win-10-background apps

Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

All synchronization

Windows 10 is all about synchronization. Everything – system settings, themes, passwords, search history – is synced by default on all your logged in devices. But not everyone wants our search history to be synced between our phones and our computers, so here’s how to turn off syncing.

To turn off syncing for settings (including themes and passwords), go to Settings> Accounts> Sync your settings. You can disable synchronization of all settings or selectively disable certain settings.


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

Automatic updates

Windows 10 automatically downloads and installs updates, and you can’t really turn them off. And honestly, you shouldn’t disable them – your current operating system is a secure operating system. But if for some reason you want to prevent your computer from automatically downloading and installing Windows 10 updates (perhaps to manually download and install those updates on your own schedule), you can pause the updates for a certain period of time. Go to Settings> Updates> Advanced optionsand under Pause updates select a date within the next 35 days. However, after that point, you won’t be able to stop again until you update.


Screenshot by Alison DeNisco Rayome / topwatchbest

For more information, see the best Windows 11 features and how to use them and everything you need to know upgrade from Windows 10 to Windows 11.

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