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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.

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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.

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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.

19 thoughts on “Disable certain Winkey shortcuts in Windows 10”

  1. 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!

  2. 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

    1. 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.

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

    2. The Policies setting work and disable the win+w keyboard mapping but then no other application can assign win+w. Even when the DisabledHotkeys is set to W the win+w key combination can’t be assign to a shortcut desktop icon or any other application. Restart doesn’t help either :(

    1. 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.

          1. This article is years old and still nobody knows? Please, this is the only reference to disabling Win+Ctrl+F I’ve been able to find anywhere. Even if I never check this site again, someone please respond with the solution so future people in my situation get help.

      1. I’ve got a solution but it requires 3rd party software.

        Install AutoHotKey from their official site. Paste the below config into a text file in an editor of your choice, save it, and append “.ahk” to the filename. Your choice on the filename. I called mine “Windows-Virtual-Desktop-Disable.ahk”. Right click on the text file you just created and select “Run Script”. Done. Enjoy! You are free to remove any lines that correspond to a shortcut you’d like to keep active.

        This won’t stop Virtual Desktop from running, but it at least disables the keyboard shortcuts that enable it. I also recommend you right-click your task bar and remove the check-mark from “Show Task View Button”. AutoHotKey can be configured to run at startup so that you only have to do this once.

        ; Below line disables WIN+TAB
        #tab::return

        ; Below line disables WIN+CTRL+D
        #^D::return

        ; Below line disables WIN+CTRL+LEFT-ARROW
        #^Left::return

        ; Below line disables WIN+CTRL+Right-ARROW
        #^Right::return

  3. 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

  4. After creating the “DisabledHotkeys” registry how do I disable the Virtual Desktop keybind (WIN + TAB)??

    I’ve right clicked the entry and clicked “Modify” but I’m not sure how to represent the TAB button??

  5. The Policies setting work and disable the win+w keyboard mapping but then no other application can assign win+w. Even when the DisabledHotkeys is set to W the win+w key combination can’t be assign to a shortcut desktop icon or any other application. Restart doesn’t help either.

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