Windows 10 version 1903: new Windows Update policy

Windows 10 version 1903, the soon-to-be-released next feature upgrade for Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system, features a new Windows Update related policy.

Windows Update is a core updating service that is an integral part of every Windows installation, especially on the consumer side. While there are other means to download and install updates, using the Microsoft Update Catalog or third-party tools, it is fair to say that the majority of consumer-based Windows systems gets updated through Windows Update.

Windows 10 version 1903 will launch with a new policy that gives administrators options to set deadlines for automatic updates and restarts.

Specify deadlines for automatic updates and restarts

windows 10 specify deadlines

Path: Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update

The policy offers two main options:

  1. Set a deadline for quality updates and/or feature updates.
  2. Set a restart grace period.

Deadlines for feature updates or quality updates may delay the installation of updates by up to 30 days. The restart grace period may be delayed by up to 7 days.

The policy lets you specify the number of days that a user has before quality and feature updates are installed on their devices automatically, and a grace period after which required restarts occur automatically.

Updates and restarts will occur regardless of active hours, and the user will not be able to reschedule.

The policy overrides several existing policies if configured:

  • Specify deadline before auto restart for update installation (delay quality or feature updates by up to 30 days).
  • Always automatically restart at the scheduled time (set a restart timer to give users up to 180 minutes before automatic restart).
  • Specify Engaged restart transition and notification schedule for updates (set transition, snooze, and deadline for feature updates and quality updates).
  • No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic updates installations (blocks Windows from restarting the computer automatically if a user is logged on).

Windows Registry

The following Registry values are linked to the Group Policy options (thanks Deskmodder)

Path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREPoliciesMicrosoftWindowsWindowsUpdate

  • SetComplianceDeadline
    • Type: Dword
    • Value: 1
  • ConfigureDeadlineForQualityUpdates
    • Type: Dword
    • Value: 7
  • ConfigureDeadlineForFeatureUpdates
    • Type:Dword
    • Value: 7
  • ConfigureDeadlineGracePeriod
    • Type: Dword
    • Value:2

The values of ConfigureDeadlineForQualityUpdates, ConfigureDeadlineForFeatureUpdates, and ConfigureDeadlineGracePeriod set the number of days before quality or feature updates are installed automatically on the device and before an automatic restart is required.


Download the following Registry file to apply the settings automatically. Please note that you may want to modify the values if you don’t want to use the default 7 day deadline for feature and quality updates, and the 2 day deadline for automatic restarts.

Click on the following link to download the Registry file:

Now You: How (and when) do you download and install updates for Windows?

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