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How to manage Windows 10 notification and upgrade options

Summary
Qualified computers and devices that are deployed in your organization and that are running Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8.1 Pro are eligible for the free Windows 10 upgrade offer and will be able to upgrade through Windows Update. (This offer is not available to customers who are using Enterprise or Embedded editions of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.) This article describes the notification and upgrade options, and it explains how you can manage these options.

Regardless of current disqualifying criteria, administrators who want to prevent Windows 7, Windows 7 for Embedded Systems, Windows 8.1, and Windows Embedded 8.1 Pro clients from upgrading should enable the policy settings that are discussed in this article.

For more information about upgrade requirements for Windows 10, see the Windows home page.
More information

How to manage the Windows 10 upgrade

Automatic scenarios

The Windows 10 upgrade is automatically blocked (that is, no further action is required) on computers or other devices in the following scenarios:

  • The computer or device is serviced through WSUS and has not had update 3035583 applied.
  • The computer is running any of the following systems, which are excluded from this reservation offer: 

    • Windows 8.1 Enterprise or Windows 8 Enterprise
    • Windows RT 8.1 or Windows RT
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Pro
    • Windows Embedded 8 Standard
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry or Windows Embedded 8 Industry
    • Windows 7 Enterprise
    • Windows 7 for Embedded Systems
    • Windows Embedded Standard 7
    • Windows Embedded POSReady 7

Non-automatic scenarios

You can manage the Windows 10 upgrade by using any of the following methods. 
Group Policy
Microsoft has released new updates to enable you to block upgrades to Windows 10 through Windows Update. These updates install a new Group Policy Setting. Computers that have this Group Policy Setting enabled will never detect, download, or install an upgrade to the latest version of Windows. 

To obtain and install these updates, go to the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:

To configure this Group Policy Setting by using Group Policy, the following conditions apply:

  • The appropriate update must be installed.
  • You must use the updated WindowsUpdate.admx file by copying the file from the editing policy location.
Computer Configuration
To block the upgrade by using Computer Configuration, follow these steps:

  1. Click Computer Configuration.
  2. Click Policies.
  3. Click Administrative Templates.
  4. Click Windows Components.
  5. Click Windows Update.
  6. Double-click Turn off the upgrade to the latest version of Windows through Windows Update.
  7. Click Enable.
Policy path: Computer Configuration / Administrative Templates / Windows Components / Windows UpdatePolicy
Setting: Turn off the upgrade to the latest version of Windows through Windows Update
Windows registry
Important Follow the steps in this section carefully. Serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Before you modify it, back up the registry for restoration in case problems occur.

To block the upgrade to Windows 10 through Windows Update, specify the following registry value:

Subkey: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate
DWORD value: DisableOSUpgrade = 1

Hide the Get Windows 10 app (notification area icon)

Automatic scenarios

The Windows 10 notification app is automatically blocked (that is, no further action is required) on computers or other devices in the following scenarios:

  • The computer is running any of the following systems, which are excluded from this reservation offer:

    • Windows 8.1 Enterprise or Windows 8 Enterprise
    • Windows RT 8.1 or Windows RT
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Pro
    • Windows Embedded 8 Standard
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry or Windows Embedded 8 Industry
    • Windows 7 Enterprise
    • Windows 7 for Embedded Systems
    • Windows Embedded Standard 7
    • Windows Embedded POSReady 7

Non-automatic scenarios

Windows registry
Important Follow the steps in this section carefully. Serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Before you modify it, back up the registry for restoration in case problems occur.

For non-Enterprise versions of Windows, the notification icon can be suppressed through the Windows registry. To do this, set the following registry value:

Subkey: HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Gwx
DWORD value: DisableGwx = 1

Enable the Get Windows 10 app (notification area icon)

If you don’t see the Get Windows 10 app (the small icon in the notification area), this might occur for any of the following reasons:
  • The computer or other device is not up to date because it doesn't have at least Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) or Windows 8.1 Update installed.
  • Windows Update is turned off or is not set to automatically receive updates.
  • You have blocked or uninstalled the necessary Windows Update functionality. For more information about this, see KB article 3035583.
  • The Windows installation is not activated.
  • The device is running any of the following systems, which are excluded from this reservation offer:

    • Windows 8.1 Enterprise or Windows 8 Enterprise
    • Windows RT 8.1 or Windows RT
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Pro
    • Windows Embedded 8 Standard
    • Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry or Windows Embedded 8 Industry
    • Windows 7 Enterprise
    • Windows 7 for Embedded Systems
    • Windows Embedded Standard 7
    • Windows Embedded POSReady 7
  • The device is managed by an IT administrator who has suppressed the icon from being shown on your desktop. (To verify this situation, check with your IT administrator.)
You can fix the first three issues by running Windows Update and installing all available updates. If you believe that none of these conditions apply to you, and if you still do not see the icon, follow these steps.

Note This fix will determine whether your device meets all the prerequisites, and then it will turn on the Get Windows 10 app as appropriate.
  1. Start Notepad.
  2. Paste the following text into Notepad:

    schtasks /run /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\Setup\gwx\refreshgwxconfigandcontent" “reg delete HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Gwx /value DisableGwx”
  3. Click File, and then click Save As.
  4. In the File name box, change the file name to ReserveWin10.cmd.
  5. In the Save as type list, select All files (*.*), and then select the folder that you want to save the file to. For example, save the file to C:/Temp.
  6. Click Save.
  7. Open an elevated Command Prompt window. To do this, open the Start screen or Start menu, type Command Prompt in the search box, right-click Command Prompt in the results list, and then click Run as administrator.
  8. Run the file from the location that you selected in Step 5. For example, type the following command at the command prompt window:

    C:/Temp/ReserveWin10.cmd
The Microsoft Compatibility Appraiser can take 10–30 minutes to run. During this time, the script will continuously provide status reports that it is running. Please be patient! If the script is failing in an infinite loop, this means that you don’t have the necessary prerequisite Windows updates installed. In addition to having either Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1 Update installed, you must also have the following updates installed:
For Windows 7 SP1
For Windows 8.1 Update
To manually verify that you have these updates installed, type the following command at an elevated command prompt:
dism /online /get-packages | findstr <KBID>
Note In this command, <KBID> represents the actual KB update article number of the update that you are looking for.

If you have the update installed, this command will display the package identity. For example, Windows 8.1 users should see the following:
C:\>dism /online /get-packages | findstr 3035583
Package Identity : Package_for_KB3035583~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~6.3.1.29
Script for non-English Windows versions
For non-English versions of Windows, use the following script (which is now the same script as shown in step 2 of the preceding procedure):

schtasks /run /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\Setup\gwx\refreshgwxconfigandcontent"

How to bypass the Unattend screen in Windows 8.1 Update

In Windows 8.1 with KB3065988 installed, the system prompts users to reserve a copy of Windows 10 as part of the OOBE process that occurs at the first startup cycle. For organizations that are deploying Windows 8.1 Pro by using an Unattend.xml file that automates the OOBE process, this reservation notice still occurs. To suppress this notice, you can use either of the following methods:

  • Use Group Policy
    Set the following Group Policy setting to Disabled:

    Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Logon > Show first sign-in animation
  • Change the Unattend.xml file
    Add the following entry to the Unattend.xml file for Windows 8.1.
    For Windows 8.1 Pro x64
        <settings pass="specialize">        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Deployment" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">            <RunSynchronous>                <RunSynchronousCommand wcm:action="add">                    <Description>DisableAnimation</Description>                    <Order>1</Order>                    <Path>reg.exe add "HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon" /v EnableFirstLogonAnimation /d 0 /t REG_DWORD /f </Path>                </RunSynchronousCommand>            </RunSynchronous>        </component>    </settings>
    For Windows 8.1 Pro x86
        <settings pass="specialize">        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Deployment" processorArchitecture="x86" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">            <RunSynchronous>                <RunSynchronousCommand wcm:action="add">                    <Description>DisableAnimation</Description>                    <Order>1</Order>                    <Path>reg.exe add "HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon" /v EnableFirstLogonAnimation /d 0 /t REG_DWORD /f </Path>                </RunSynchronousCommand>            </RunSynchronous>        </component>    </settings>
Properties

Article ID: 3080351 - Last Review: 01/22/2016 17:20:00 - Revision: 5.0

Windows 10

  • kbprb kbsurveynew KB3080351
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