Disable Apps Autolaunch in Windows 10

Starting with Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, the operating system is able to automatically reopen apps which were running before shutdown or restart. This behavior is totally unexpected for most Windows users who upgraded to the recent release of the OS. New research has exposed a Registry tweak which can disable the feature.
If you are following Windows 10 development and articles on this blog, you might be familiar with all the changes done to Windows 10. One of them was the ability to re-launch the apps after installing updates, i.e. after restarting once updates have been installed. If you are running Windows 10 build 17040 and above, you should use the option Use my sign in info to automatically finish setting up my device after an update or restart under Privacy in Settings. See the article "How To Auto Sign In After Restarting Windows 10". However, many users report that it doesn't work for them.

Microsoft said the following:

Based on your feedback, the feature to restore applications that have registered for application restart after you reboot or shutdown (through power options available on the Start Menu and various other locations) has been set to only occur for users that have enabled “Use my sign-in info to automatically finish setting my device after an update or restart” in the Privacy section under Sign-in Options Settings.

If you are running an older build, you could use another trick. Tip: To find the build you have installed, refer to the article How to find the Windows 10 build number you are running.

With Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, the OS will automatically start apps you have been running before the shutdown or restart. Even disabling the Fast Boot feature does not change the situation. Running the shutdown command stops the OS from re-opening apps. The command is as follows:

shutdown -t 0 -s

When you want to restart, use the following command to reboot the OS instead:

shutdown -t 0 -r

Refer to the following article:

Disable Apps Auto Reopening in Windows 10

Finally, a new Registry tweak discovered by MDL forum user, Hendrik Vermaak, disables the feature completely. Here is how it can be done.
Before proceeding, you need to find the security identifier for your user account (SID).

Find your user account's security identifier (SID)

There is a special console command which you can use to obtain information about user accounts in Windows 10. It will allow you to find the SID, and plenty of other information. It is covered in detail in this article:

In short, run the following command:

wmic useraccount list full

Here is the sample output:

Note the SID value for your account.

Disable App Autolaunch in Windows 10

  1. Open Registry Editor.
  2. Go to the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\UserARSO\SID. Replace the SID portion with your actual SID value, e.g. S-1-5-21-1009994778-2815073881-3359792039-1001.
  3. On the right, create or modify a new 32-bit DWORD value OptOut and set it to 1.
  4. Restart Windows 10.

To save your time, the author has created an automated script.

@echo off
:: Disable Windows 10 Autolaunch Feature
:: Author: Hendrik Vermaak, 03 February 2018

:: Check for administrative permissions
>nul 2>&1 "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\cacls.exe" "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\config\system"
:: If error flag set, we do not have admin.
if '%errorlevel%' NEQ '0' (
echo Requesting administrative privileges...
goto UACPrompt
) else ( goto gotAdmin )
echo Set UAC = CreateObject^("Shell.Application"^) > "%temp%\getadmin.vbs"
echo UAC.ShellExecute "cmd.exe", "/C """"%~f0""""", , "runas", 1 >> "%temp%\getadmin.vbs"
cscript "%temp%\getadmin.vbs"
exit /B
if exist "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" ( del "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" )
pushd "%CD%"
CD /D "%~dp0"
:: BatchGotAdmin (Run as Admin code ends)

:: Disable AutoLaunch Feature
for /F "tokens=* skip=1" %%n in ('wmic useraccount where "name='%username%'" get sid ^| findstr "."') do (set SID=%%n)
reg add "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\UserARSO\%SID%" /v OptOut /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f
echo Autolaunch feature disabled.
echo Please press any key to exit...
pause >nul

You can copy and paste the text above to a new Notepad window and save it as a CMD file. Alternatively, you can download the cmd file here:

Download CMD File

That's it.

Source: MDL.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

One thought on “Disable Apps Autolaunch in Windows 10”

  1. Great tutorial. I am trying to disable this feature for all users so that they are presented for their TOTP at login but I simply cannot figure out a way of doing this for all users (regardless of SID) – any ideas?

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