How to stop Windows 10 from installing unwanted Store apps

Windows 10 now comes with some pre-installed Store apps. This article will guide you on how to prevent or stop the installation, reinstallation or updating of unwanted Microsoft Store apps and advertisements of these apps.

Microsoft released Windows 10 as a Service. So with this concept, Microsoft stands at a place where it can deliver promotional offers, services, apps and other components freely. This is the concept that made Windows 10 initially free for the consumers and at the same time helped Microsoft make some money out of it.

In 2015, Microsoft revealed that they had signed a deal with King who is a developer for Candy Crush games. With the help of such deal, King’s apps like Candy Crush Saga and later Candy Crush Soda Saga were distributed to users built in with the OOBE (Out of the box experience) on Windows 10. As Microsoft is iterating forward with the newer releases of Windows 10 feature updates, we are getting to see more and more apps being promoted on the Windows 10 start menu. UWP Windows 10 apps like Twitter, Photoshop, 3D Builder, Microsoft Solitaire Collection, etc. have started to come pre-installed with Windows 10.

Stop Windows 10 from installing unwanted Apps

Users on online communities have reported that these pre-installed bloatware apps take up to 750 MB of storage on the hard disk partition where it is installed. It is usually take up the OS partition which is again usually the Local Disk C partition. These apps are fetched automatically with an updated version from the Microsoft Store without the user’s consent and happen in the background. However, this download progress can be seen in the Downloads and Updates section of the Microsoft Store. – a majority of the users end up not noticing it. But this is not the case for everyone.

If you get Windows 10 on the LTS Channel (Long Term Servicing Channel) which is usually for Enterprise customers, you do not see these pre-installed bloatware apps or if you use Windows 10 Pro for Workstations edition, you do not get this pre-installed bloatware either. Although you can just buy Windows 10 Pro for Workstations edition, it costs really much than the other consumer-focused editions at $300.

There was a Group Policy hack to prevent the installation of these bloatware apps but in Windows 10 v1607, this option was removed. However, this does not mean that we can not do anything about this. With the removal of all these old options, we are left with the usage of some modifications of Settings inside of Windows 10.

Stop Windows 10 from installing unwanted Apps

First of all, you need to stop Windows 10 from giving you suggestions for different apps and services.

For this, start by opening the Settings app from the Start Menu or by hitting the WINKEY + I combination.

Then click on the menu called Personalize.

And then finally click on the option called as Start in the side menu on the left.

On the right side panel, there will be a toggle for Show suggestions occasionally in Start. You will have to turn it Off.

Now, Windows 10 will stop suggesting you different apps and services

Next, you will need to stop their downloads in the background as well.

For this, begin with going into the Microsoft Store.

Click on the menu on the right top corner denoted by three dots.

Then click on Settings.

There will be a toggle labeled as Update apps automatically. You will have to turn it Off.

Stop Windows 10 from installing unwanted Apps

This will prevent background installation of these pre-installed bloatware apps on your Windows 10 machine.

Additionally, if you want to see no apps suggestions at all, you can try disabling the other two options of Live Tile support and the Video Autoplay feature in the settings of Microsoft Store.

I suppose that by following the above instructions, you will probably make your Windows 10 computer free from these annoying advertisements and the unauthorized installation of the pre-installed bloatware apps.

See this post if you are interested in uninstalling Windows 10 app addons.

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Ayush has been a Windows enthusiast since the day he got his first PC with Windows 98SE. He is an active Windows Insider since Day 1 and is now a Windows Insider MVP. He has been testing pre-release services on his Windows 10 PC, Lumia, and Android devices.