How to disable or turn off Group Policy Refresh while Computer is in use

Group Policy, an administrative tool introduced in Windows 2000, determines how programs, network resources, and operating system behave for users and computers in an organization. Group Policy helps users to add policies for active objects by making modifications in Windows Windows Registry. Generally, by default Group Policy gets updated in the background every 90 minutes, after a change is recorded in the active object. Even when you Change Group Policy Refresh Interval and set it at 0 minutes, the computer tries to update Group Policy every 7 seconds.

However, the updating of Group Policy depends upon the resources that have been modified and may vary according to the priority. So eventually there exists the possibility of a decrease in the speed of the computer, since a Group Policy refresh in the background will affect system speed. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to determine how much consumption of memory is being carried out by Group Policy refresh since it is not listed in Task Manager. If we let Group Policy be updated after the user has been logged out, then the system will save on some resources. This is an option given in Windows, and should you wish to change this setting, for some reason, this is how to go about it.

Turn Off Group Policy Refresh

In this article, I’ll tell you the way to disable or turn off  Group Policy from being updated automatically while the system is in use.

Disable background refresh of Group Policy using Local Group Policy Editor

1. Press Windows Key + R combination, type put gpedit.msc in Run dialog box and hit Enter to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

2. Navigate here:

Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> System -> Group Policy

turn off group policy refresh

3. In the right pane, look for the setting Turn off background refresh of Group Policy. It should have Not Configured status by default. Double clicking on it will yield you following window:

Disable-GPO-Background-Refresh-1

4. In the above window, selecting Enabled will let the computer to refresh Group Policy objects after the computer is being logged out by the user rather than refreshing same while the computer is in use. Click OK. Reboot to make changes effective. That’s it!

NOTE : The policy Turn off background refresh of Group Policy overrides over policies Set Group Policy refresh interval for computers and Set Group Policy refresh interval for users which handles the refreshing time of Group Policy to update itself in background while we’re working on computer.

Read: How to force Group Policy Update in Windows 10.

Disable background refresh of Group Policy using Registry Editor

1. Press Windows Key + R combination, type put Regedt32.exe in Run dialog box and hit Enter to open the Registry Editor.

2. Navigate to this registry key:

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer

Disable-GPO-Background-Refresh-3

3. In the right pane of this location, create a DWORD named DisableBkGndGroupPolicy using Right click -> New -> DWORD. Double click on it to modify, you’ll get this:

Disable-GPO-Background-Refresh-4

4. In the above-shown box, input the Value data equals to 1. Click OK. That’s it! Reboot to get results.

How to Change Group Policy Refresh Interval for computers may also interest you. You can also disable background processing of Registry Policy.

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Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
An Electrical Engineer by profession, Kapil is a Microsoft MVP and a Microsoft Content Creator. Please read the entire post & the comments first & create a system restore point before making any changes to your system.

8 Comments

  1. Hi friends. Jeremy Moskowitz, GP MVP here. Sorry, but this is just bad advice. DO NOT TURN OFF the background refresh. If you do, you wont get any changes until logoff / logon, and that’s just dumb. Dont do it folks. Just. Dont.

  2. Kapil Arya

    Hello, Thanks for commenting Jeremy. I agree, but this is an option available
    in Windows, and this post just shows the way to do it, should someone
    want to for some reason 🙂

  3. Tarz

    I have a reason you might want to. Our corporate Admins set Powershell to Allsigned via GPO and did not give local admins a way to sign our scripts. We make extensive use of PS scripts and this was the only way to prevent GPO from contantly reverting back to AllSigned while doing our job. In case you’re wondering no they won’t fix the policy – we’ve been told to “deal with it”.

  4. User

    Thanks, please note there is no English word “updation”. Select -> selection, Delete -> deletion, Insert -> insertion, Update -> Update.

  5. TG2

    @jeremym:disqus – spoken like an IT nazi that doesn’t have faith or trust in the technical people for whom they are supposed to provide services. Some of us disable the GP because of people like you or that don’t have the where with all to understand forcing technical support persons to reboot their systems in the middle of their work shift is even MORE of a bad idea. f**ktards all of those of that ilk.

  6. Yep. That’s me. A nazi. You got me. The thousands of hours I’ve spent helping admins be awesome at their jobs the thousands of people I’ve tauught best practices and thousands of book sales. You’re right. I’m a total effing idiot. Thanks for commenting. Oh.. Gp in the background will never force a reboot under any circumstance. None. Have a nice day.

  7. Jeff_Engineer

    Kapil – the picture for disabling group policy refresh shows a slightly different location than the text string in item 2. Which location is it, PoliciesSystem or PoliciesExplorer?

  8. Nandan Mehta

    sweet

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