Disable certain Winkey shortcuts in Windows 10

In Windows 10, it is possible to disable certain keyboard shortcuts which involve the Win key. If you have a strong reason to disable such a shortcut, let's say to re-assign it to some app or script, here is how it can be done.


Windows 10 has a number of pre-defined hotkeys with the Win key. We covered them earlier in our previous articles.
Here are some shortcuts available in Windows 10 out of the box:
Win + D - Minimize all windows. See what the difference is between Win + D (Show Desktop) and Win + M (Minimize All) keyboard shortcuts in Windows.

Win + R - Open the good old Run dialog. This is the fastest way to access it in Windows 10.

Win + Ctrl + D - creates a new virtual desktop.

Win + Tab - manage virtual desktops/open Task View. See the following article for more details: Hotkeys to manage Virtual Desktops in Windows 10 (Task View).

Win + A - Open the Action Center to view notifications from the operating system and apps. You can disable this keyboard shortcut and the whole Action Center if you do not use it.

Win + K - Open the Connect flyout. It is useful when you need to connect quickly to some device.

Win + X - Open the power user menu. This menu has shortcuts to useful administrative tools and system functions. See more details here: Use Win+X menu to manage tasks in Windows 10 faster.

For the full Winkey shortcut reference, see these articles:

If you want, you can disable one or several Winkey keyboard shortcuts as follows.

  1. Open Registry Editor.
  2. Go to the following Registry key:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced

    Tip: You can access any desired Registry key with one click.

  3. In the right pane, you should create a new string value named DisabledHotkeys. Windows 10 create new string value Windows 10 create DisabledHotkeys string value
  4. Set its value data to the characters of hotkeys you want to disable. Here are a few examples:
    Set it to X to disable the hotkey Win + X.
    Set it to RX to disable hotkeys Win + X and Win + R.
    And so on.
    In the screenshot below, I disabled the hotkey Win + E: Disable certain Winkey shortcuts in Windows 10
  5. Restart Explorer or sign out and sign in back to your user account.

That's it. Once this is done, the hotkeys you specified will become disabled and unassigned. You can re-use them in a third party app which allows you to assign global hotkeys.

11 thoughts on “Disable certain Winkey shortcuts in Windows 10

  1. Rick Grunwald

    Good information but I think I will rant a bit
    [RANT]
    It would really be great if ALL keyboard shortcuts were in one place for editing / deleting including those assigned to shortcuts. I have been dealing with “who owns the printscreen button” issue off and on forever. Usually (in this case) it is between Snagit and Dropbox and there is no good way in dropbox to shut off nor CHANGE the behavior.
    [\RANT]
    Thanks for everything!

    Reply
  2. Долматов Алексей

    I try disable WIN+W (Windows Ink Workspace in Winows 10.0.14393), it’s don’t work (already restart explorer and relogin user)
    Need use windows police work lock this hotkey
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\WindowsInkWorkspace
    AllowWindowsInkWorkspace DWORD
    (delete) = enable 0 = disable

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      I think this hotkey is registered by some other process, not by Explorer.
      That’s why it cannot be disabled using the mentioned tweak.
      Or Microsoft “forgot” in include this keyboard sequence into the key list which can be disabled.

      Reply
      1. Долматов Алексей

        It will be possible to incorporate this tweak in one of the following versions of Winaero Tweaker? (both variants)

        Reply
        1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

          Well, I think it is possible.

          Reply
  3. Simon

    didn’t work for me. tried to disable win+v and win+h AND neither of these worked…any idea why?

    Reply
  4. A6

    It worked on Windows 7. But on Windows 10 it is not.

    Reply
    1. A6

      Ok, it works.
      Do you know how to disable Win key combinations with Ctrl and Alt keys? I want to leave Win+D, but disable Win+Alt+D or Win+Ctrl+D (by this key the StrokesPlus is typing me current date-time… it did on Windows7…)
      Thank you.

      Reply
      1. Ben

        Was this ever answered? is there a way to disable the ctrl key input?

        Reply
        1. Cipher

          I want to know this too… anyone?

          Reply
  5. Morten

    Hey

    I know this is an old post but I would like to have a thing clarified that I cannot find anywhere.
    When using this string “DisabledHotkeys” I would like to disable Win + Spacebar (change keyboard input shortcut) but there is no way I can find to tell it it is spacebar I mean, (it takes it as a black entry)
    Normal keys such as E R or 1234 are easy enough but spacebar I cannot figure out how to specify.

    Thanks – Morten

    Reply

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