With the launch of Windows 10 in 2015, Microsoft switched to biannual feature updates. 

However, the latest of these, officially available in May, caused a series of issues for early adopters.  For many weeks, it seemed like more trouble than it was worth

While many of the problems have now been ironed out, there are still plenty of reasons why you wouldn't want to install the update. 

Despite this, many PCs and laptops will encourage you to keep software up to date, and it can be hard to ignore. Here's how to block the May update, version 2004.

How to block the Windows 10 May update

Firstly, you'll need to check which version of Windows 10 you're running. The process is simple - just head to Settings > System and hit the 'About' tab in the left pane. Your screen should look something like this:

Windows 10 About PC

Note down both the type of licence (e.g. Home, Pro) and four-digit version number. In the example above, it's Windows 10 Home, version .How you go about blocking the update (or whether it's safe to do so) depends on how recently your device has been updated.

Version 1803

Version 1803 was released in April 2018 and stopped receiving security updates in November 2019. This leaves your device exposed to viruses and malware, making it unsafe to use. 

If you're still running this software, now is the time to update your software. However, you don't have to skip straight to the May 2020 (2004) update.

We'd recommend moving to version 1909 (November 2019), which can be done by downloading the Windows 10 Update Assistant. Just make sure all your files are backed up before proceeding. 

Version 1809

Version 1809 was released in November 2018 and will continue to receive security updates until 10 November 2020

That makes things a little more complicated, as while you're fine now, updating your software will be a good way to future-proof your device.

The updating process will be largely the same as above, but ensuring you stick on version 1809 will depend on which form of Windows 10 you have. 

For Pro users, just head to Settings > Update & Security and click 'Advanced options'. On the page that appears, ensure the drop-down boxes are set to:

  • Semi-Annual Channel
  • 365
  • 15

These settings ensure Windows 10 has to get the go ahead from you before installing any updates. Just make sure you don't ever click 'Check for updates' at any point. 

If you're on Windows 10 Home, the only way to achieve this is by updating to version 1903 or 1909 and following the instructions below. 

Version 1903 or 1909

On these more recent versions, Windows 10 will check for updates automatically. 

At some point, within Settings > Update & Security, you'll something like below appear. This occurs regardless of whether you're on Home or Pro. 

Windows 10 updates

Here, it's as simple as avoiding clicking the 'Download and install' button, however tempting it may be. Uninstalling Windows updates is a bit more complicated. 

Already installed it but would rather you hadn't? Here's how to uninstall the Windows 10 May update.

Prefer to wait until the next feature update? Here's everything you need to know about Windows 10's November 2020 update.