Stop Windows 10 Update Notifications from Interrupting Your Games

I had taken quite the hiatus from Windows gaming while I worked on certification, but got a chance to have some quick Overwatch sessions last night, only to have one of the competitive matches interrupted by a popup that took me out of the game (I was able to alt-tab back in) that stated the following: “Updates Are Available. Required Updates need to be downloaded”.

Thanks for letting me know about the updates, but interrupting all apps is not the best user experience

Now don’t get me wrong, this is normally fine, but when you’re in the middle of something, say a movie, intense game, conference call or presentation, this behaviour is pretty awful.

No fear, however, there’s a fix, though definitely not obvious. Let’s disable the Windows 10 update notification. We’ll be using the cmd.exe tool in order to run the following script found on StackExchange:

cd /d "%Windir%\System32"
takeown /F MusNotification.exe
icacls MusNotification.exe /deny Everyone:(X)
takeown /F MusNotificationUx.exe
icacls MusNotificationUx.exe /deny Everyone:(X)

This essentially denies the system from running the app itself, which will stop the popup.

In order to undo it:

cd /d "%Windir%\System32"
 icacls MusNotification.exe /remove:d Everyone
 icacls MusNotification.exe /grant Everyone:F
 icacls MusNotification.exe /setowner "NT SERVICE\TrustedInstaller"
 icacls MusNotification.exe /remove:g Everyone
 icacls MusNotificationUx.exe /remove:d Everyone
 icacls MusNotificationUx.exe /grant Everyone:F
 icacls MusNotificationUx.exe /setowner "NT SERVICE\TrustedInstaller"
 icacls MusNotificationUx.exe /remove:g Everyone

And there you have it! No more intrusive popups when updates are needed.

Now that we’ve modified this, a quick reminder that if you want regular updates, it may be worth checking for them once in a while.

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