How to Enable Windows Update in the Registry [Quick Steps]

Activate Windows Update through registry with a single change

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Key notes

  • You can easily enable Windows Update via registry simply by making few adjustments.
  • Use cation since improper alterations to registry can lead to other issues..

Failure to install Windows updates can lead to various issues, so many users wonder how to enable Windows updates through the registry.

In a previous article, we explored the complexities of the Windows 11 update error, and as you know, such errors can occur if Windows Update isn’t enabled.

Therefore, keep reading to learn more about proper ways to enable this essential feature.

What is the registry key for disabling Windows Update?

To disable Windows Update through the registry, you need to modify the following key:


Once you enter this key, you need to make changes to AUOptions DWORD to disable Windows Update through the registry.

How can I enable Windows Update in the registry?

Configuring Windows Updates by altering the registry

  1. On your home screen type in regedit in the search bar and Run as Administrator.

  2. Once the UAC appears, select Yes.
  3. Once the Registry has opened, Navigate the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/Policies/Microsoft/Windows

  4. Now right-click on the Windows directory.
  5. Click on the New and select Key, and next create a new folder named Windows Update.
  6. Next right-click on the Windows Update. Choose New and then Key and create a new directory named AU
  7. Again right-click on the AU directory.
  8. Next action is to click on the New and select DWORD. 

  9. Now, define your key name as AUOptions and double-click on the AUOptions to edit the DWORD value.
  10. Kindly input a number between 2-5 as value data, and next click OK to save the setting.

An explanation of each number value is shown below:

  • 2 – This setting will alert you before downloading and installing updates on your system.
  • 3 – All the updates will download automatically and notify you before installation.
  • 4 – This setting will automatically download and automatically set the time to install it.
  • 5 – Allow access to the local system admin to choose the update status.

This is how you can enable Windows Update through the registry. As you can see, it’s not complicated, as long as you carefully follow our instructions.

In case you encounter any other problems, we suggest referring to our extensive guide on Windows Update not working or loading. This guide offers similar remedies that can assist you in finding a solution to your issue.

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More about the topics: Windows Update