How to disable Windows key or WinKey in Windows 10

Pressing the Windows keys opens the start menu. Using combination’s of WinKey with other keys on your keyboard lets you perform many actions and commands that you perform with the mouse. These are the WinKey or Windows Key shortcuts, and they are very useful.

But when one is gaming, and if one presses the Windows Key, any open PC game where the taskbar is not shown, will minimize without exiting the program! This often becomes a nightmare for PC gamers, and as such, while playing PC games, most prefer to disable this key.

Let us see how we can disable the Windows key on the keyboard to improve the Gaming experience.

Disable Windows key or WinKey

There are four ways to disable the WinKey or Windows Key:

  1. Use WinKey Killer or WinKill
  2. Use Microsoft Fix It 50465
  3. Edit the Registry manually
  4. Use the Group Policy Editor.

1] Download and use WinKey Killer, a freeware app. But this does not appear to be working on later Windows versions.

winkey-killer

I have, however, tried WinKill on my Windows 10 and it worked.

WinKill sits in the system tray where you can toggle On or Off the killing of the Windows Key. You can download it here.

2] Download Microsoft Fix It 50465 available at KB216893 and apply it! [Update – This Fix It appears to have been taken down.]

By applying this Fix It, you can disable the Windows key that is now available on many new computer keyboards.

3] Edit the Registry manually. To completely disable the Windows key, follow these steps:

  • Open regedit.
  • On the Windows menu, click HKEY_LOCAL_ MACHINE on Local Machine.
  • Double-click the System\CurrentControlSet\Control folder, and then click the Keyboard Layout folder.
  • On the Edit menu, click Add Value, type in Scancode Map, click REG_BINARY as the Data Type, and then click OK.
  • Type 00000000000000000300000000005BE000005CE000000000 in the Data field, and then click OK.
  • Close Registry Editor and restart the computer.

To enable the Windows key, follow these steps:

  • Open regedit.
  • On the Windows menu, click HKEY_LOCAL_ MACHINE on Local Machine.
  • Double-click the System\CurrentControlSet\Control folder, and then click the Keyboard Layout folder.
  • Right-click the Scancode Map registry entry, and then click Delete. Click Yes.
  • Close Registry Editor and restart the computer.

You may want to backup your registry first.

4) You can also do this using the Group Policy Editor. Run gpedit.msc and navigate to the following setting:

User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > File Explorer

Disable Windows key or WinKey

In the right pane, you will see Turn off Windows+X hotkeys. Double-click on it and select Enabled.

Keyboards with a Windows key provide users with shortcuts to common shell features. For example, pressing the keyboard sequence Windows+R opens the Run dialog box; pressing Windows+E starts File Explorer. By using this setting, you can disable these Windows+X shortcut keys. If you enable this setting, the Windows+X shortcut keys are unavailable. If you disable or do not configure this setting, the Windows+X shortcut keys are available.

This should do the job!

If your Windows, does not have the Group Policy Editor, you can use the Registry Editor to turn off the Windows key.

Navigate to –

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer

Create a 32-bit DWORD value, name it NoWinKeys and give it a value of 1.

Check this post for a Fix It that will help you if your WinKey or Windows key has become disabled, and this one if you’d like to only disable Win+L Shortcut Key.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.

8 Comments

  1. sss

    does not work on windows 8, completely useless.

  2. Memory_Hole

    WInkey killer is useless without knowing how to get to the specific menu shown above, which apparently allows it to deactivate the WIndows button. I’ve downloaded this complicated program that is not searchable, and clicking on “Manual” just takes me back to this web page. Useless!

  3. Wanderer

    WinKey Killer is not complicated at all. Download, Extract zipped files to any folder, open WKKSetup to change configuration settings (the window shown above). You can also edit the configfuration settings by right clicking WKeyKill.ini and selecting Edit.

    **All of this and more is described in the file named README.**

    (However simple it is though, I don’t believe it works on modern windows anyways lol)

  4. Larry Stevenson

    You need to update this entire article. As others have stated, WinKey Killer does not work on Windows 8. It also lacks an uninstaller. The Microsoft Fix It 50465 is no longer available as it is unsupported. The Regedit instructions are not detailed enough. Never assume that the readers know anything about it. I would suggest that people make a Restore Point (it backs up the registry) before doing anything with this. I found a more modern open source program called “WinKill” that does the job as intended. I got it here: http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/winkill.html Btw, I am an acknowledged Windows Security Expert.

  5. Penitent Man

    Create a script to disable the win key with Autohotkey (Google it!). It’s not complicated at all, just read some of the basic information in the help file. They include a one line script to disable the windows key.

  6. No, you’re not.

    The Windows Key is one of the WORST fails and we trusted you and others to fill the hole left by inept and uncaring Microsoft engineers.

    The ‘tool’ microsoft had did what it needed to do, disable the Windows Key and then stupidly, moronically, INSANELY, @microsoft decides to REMOVE one of the most needed tools in COMPUTING.

  7. WHAT?

    Most of us are not programmers and we don’t know how to ‘create a script’ which is WHY we come to websites like this.

    I am a computer EXPERT, hardware, software and processes, but I have no talent for programming.

    I am SO sick of those who HAVE the talents others NEED and then tell US to use
    THEIR talents when you could SO EASILY create a tool, put a five dollar price on it and be an instant millionaire.

    What a sick bunch some of you who have TALENTS really are.

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