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How to remove "Get Windows 10" icon from the notification area (system tray) - Part 1

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Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVE
50+ years in computer industry. Everything from development to sales. CIO. Document imaging. EE MVE 2015, EE MVE 2016, EE FELLOW 2017.
With the advent of Windows 10, Microsoft is pushing a Get Windows 10 icon into the notification area (system tray) of qualifying computers. There are many reasons for wanting to remove this icon. This two-part Experts Exchange video Micro Tutorial series explains several techniques for doing that. In this Part 1, we discuss three techniques: (i) hiding the icon, (ii) uninstalling the relevant Windows update, and (iii) disabling tasks in the Task Scheduler. They all work to remove the icon when initially performed, but some users report that the icon returns. The fourth technique, which is explained in Part 2 of the series, involves changing the registry and has received no reports yet of the icon returning.

Video Steps

1. Technique 1 - Hide icon


Right-click on an empty spot on the taskbar and then click Properties (or open Control Panel and run the Taskbar and Start Menu applet)

The Taskbar tab should already be selected, but if not, click it.

Step1

2. Change icon behavior from Show to Hide


Click the Customize... button.

Find the GWX entry in the list.

Click the drop-down arrow and change the behavior from Show icon and notifications to Hide icon and notifications.

Click OK.

Note: This approach works only if the check-box "Always show all icons and notifications on the taskbar" is un-ticked.

Step2

3. Technique 2 - Uninstall Windows update KB3035583


KB3035583 is the update that installs the Get Windows 10 app, which is what causes the icon to appear in the notification area. Uninstall that update with these steps:

Control Panel
Programs and Features
View installed updates
Find KB3035583 in the list and select it
Click Uninstall and then Yes on the "Are you sure..." dialog

Step3

4. Hide Windows update KB3035583


Because you have uninstalled KB3035583, when you do Windows Updates in the future, it will come back. When you see it in the list of updates, right-click it and select Hide update.

Step4

5. Technique 3 - Disable tasks in Task Scheduler


Run the Task Scheduler:

All Programs
Accessories
System Tools
Task Scheduler

Find the gwx folder:

Task Scheduler Library
Microsoft
Windows
Setup
gwx

Right-click each task (there may be two or four) and click Disable.

Some users report that this works, while others say that the refreshgwxconfig-b task in the GWXTriggers causes the icon to come back.

Step5

6. Technique 4 - Change the registry


The only technique with no reports of failure is to modify the registry. I hope you join me for Part 2 in this series to learn about that.

If you find this video to be helpful, please click the thumbs-up icon below. Thank you for watching!
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