How To Configure & Setting Up Active Hours on Windows 10

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Configure & Setting Up Active Hours on Windows 10

The most annoying feature of Windows 10 is the issue of a sudden reboot of your PC in order to apply recent updates automatically, especially when you are using your PC actively. The sudden restart of your system could result in the loss of the work which you have not saved yet as well as also hinders your time when working on a project with strict turnaround time.

Though Windows 10 does not provide an option to disable updates, but it provides you an alternate solution in terms of ‘Active hours’.

The main purpose of Active hours is to keep track of hours during which a system works actively and do not allow the installation of the updates during those active hours. In this way, this feature of Windows 10 prevents a sudden restart of your system as a result of installing updates. It means that the system reboot will happen before or after the active hours.

Configure and Setting Up Active Hours on Windows 10

If you want to configure and use this feature on your system, continue reading this step by step guide :-

1. Enable Active Hours using Windows 10 Settings

Enable Automatic Active Hours
Configure Custom Active Hours
2. Reschedule Automatic Restart of a System

3. Enable Active Hours using Group Policy

4. Enable Active Hours using Registry Settings

1. Ways to Enable Active Hours using Windows 10 Settings

Enabling active hours on Windows 10 can be done in these ways, where you can choose to configure automatic active hours depending on your active hours or you can also choose setting up a particular time range manually.

Simply walk through these ways to learn more about active hours.

Enable Active Hours Automatically

You need to follow these steps to configure automatic active hours using Windows 10 Settings

Open Settings.
Click on the ‘Update & Security’ option from the list.
Click the ‘Windows Update’ option from the left panel of the window.
On the right panel, you require clicking the ‘Change active hours’ option.
Active Hours

Enable Active Hours Automatically

Now, in the next window, toggle on ‘Automatically adjust active hours for this device based on activity’ option.
After completing these steps, Windows 10 will evaluate and allow you to use your system accordingly. Also, it will enable active hours automatically. It means that when the schedule of your screen time changes, the system will adjust the active hours accordingly.

Configure Active Hours Manually

Follow these steps if you want to enable active hours manually. Like the first step, configuring it manually also prevents you from the frustration of sudden restart of your system for applying updates.

Open Settings.
Select ‘Update & Security’ from the Settings window.
Click the ‘Windows Update’ option from the list in the left panel.
Now, click the option ‘Change active hours’ available in the right panel of Settings window.
Turn off toggle switch of option ‘Automatically adjust active hours for this device based on activity’.

Configure Active Hours ManuallyClick the Change link.
Now, you have to specify the Start time and End time i.e. a time range you usually work on your system.
Click Save to save your settings.
Note: You must know that you can set 18 hours as the maximum time range and if you input time range more than 18, it will not be considered as valid input.

Once you complete these steps, your system will never restart in between your active hours. So, if there is any pending update, it will always be applied outside the specified active hours. Thus, it will not interrupt you while you are working.

2. Reschedule Automatic Restart

If you want to reschedule a restart in order to apply updates before or after the active hours which you have specified in the above section, you need to follow these steps.

Open Settings.
Go to the ‘Update & Security’ option and click it.
Click Windows Update from the left panel.
If there is a pending restart of a system to apply an update, you will see an option ‘Schedule the restart’ on the right panel.
Click this option to move to the next window.
Now, turn on toggle switch under the ‘Schedule a time’ option.

Reschedule Automatic RestartEnter the desired time and day in the ‘Pick a time’ and ‘Pick a day’ fields, respectively.
It will help in postponing the restart, where you are allowed to postpone it for up to 7 days.
Once these steps are finished, your system will not restart after this specified schedule.

3. Enable Active Hours using Group Policy

To enable active hours using Group Policy, you need to follow these steps.

Press Windows key + R to open the RUN prompt.
Type gpedit.msc and click Ok.
Now, follow these steps to open the Windows Update option.
Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Updates
Now, double click this option, ‘Turn off auto-restart for updates during active hours.’ and enable it.

Enable Active Hours using Group Policy
Enable Active Hours using Group Policy

Here, you have to select the active hours as you have done in the previous section.
Active Hours using Group Policy

Now, if you want to reduce the time range, like less than 18 hours, you just have to enable it.

For this, double click an option ‘Specify Active hours range for auto-restarts. The minimum is 8 hours.’ And specify the time range.

4. Enable Active Hours using Registry Settings

To enable or change active hours, you can also use another way i.e. using Registry.

Press Windows key + R to open the RUN prompt.
Type regedit and click Ok, it will open Registry Editor.
Go to the path:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsUpdate\UX\Settings

Enable Active Hours using Registry Settings

Enable Active Hours using Registry Settings

Now, you have to change a few keys, ActiveHoursStart and ActiveHoursEnd and enter your specified time range.

Conclusion

If you want to enable active hours, Windows 10 Settings is the best choice. You can go for Group Policy and Registry Settings methods if want to enable active hours remotely or when you are in a business environment.