How To Disable Cortana in Windows 10?

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If you have recently updated your Windows 10 OS to its Anniversary Update version, then you must have noticed that unlike the previous Windows 10 version, there is no way you can turn off Cortana here.

In short, Microsoft does not want you to get rid of it. This is kind of a bit annoying. Isn’t it?

Actually in the previous Windows 10 version, reportedly users found it very pointless to have Cortana in their system. It is believed to be collecting a lot of user data to enhance the functionality but still not reaching the expected benchmark.

Moreover, it imposes its protocols, like launching the Microsoft Edge browser all the time, and uses the Bing search engine by default.

So if you want to get rid of it in the new Anniversary version or even in the previous Windows 10 version, read the article thoroughly below.

#1: How to Disable Cortana Temporarily

This approach is only applicable if you have the option to disable the feature. So basically this method is not advisable for Anniversary Update.

But still, let’s stick to it for the time being.

Here’s how you disable Cortana every time it activates itself:

Step 1. Type “Cortana” in the Windows search box and choose “Cortana and Search Settings” from the search result.

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Step 2. Go to the “Talk to Cortana” tab on the right-side panel. Ensure that “Hey Cortana” and “Keyboard Shortcut” options are turned off. If not, then toggle them off.

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#2: How to Disable Cortana Permanently using Windows Registry

Let’s just assume that you have created a system restore point, and you are damn sure about turning it off permanently, then this method is advisable for you guys.

Without any further ado, read the steps to know how it’s done:

Step 1. Press “Windows + R” keys combination to bring up the “Run” search panel at the bottom left corner of the desktop screen.

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Step 2. In the text field, type “regedit” and hit “Enter”.

NOTE: If a User Account Control (UAC) Window asks for your admin permission, click “Yes” to proceed.

Step 3. Now navigate to the following pathway:

HKEY_Local_Machine > SOFTWARE > Policies > Microsoft > Windows

Step 4. Right-click on the “Windows” directory and choose “New”, and then “key” from the side sub-menu.

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Step 5. Name the folder as “Windows Search”.

Step 6. Right-click the “Windows Search” newly created folder. Select “New” and then “DWORD (32-bit) value” from the sideway submenu.

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Step 7. Now name the new file “Allow Cortana”.

Step 8. Next double click the “Allow Cortana” option. Set the value to 0, and click “OK”.

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Step 9. Exit the Registry Windows, and check if the Cortana option is still visible or not.

If you have done everything correctly, then it would not appear any longer.

TIP: To enable it again, go to the same “Allow Cortana” file and simply delete the file.

#3: How to Disable Cortana Permanently using Group Policy Editor

Using Registry Editor is a bit risky for novices who are not fully aware of its misfortunate downsides. Thus it is safer to lean on Group Policy Editor, especially if you are using Windows 10 Pro or Windows 10 Enterprise.

Go through the steps below:

Step 1. Press “Windows + R” to bring the “Run” search panel.

Step 2. Enter “gpedit.msc” in the search field, and hit “Enter”.

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Step 3. As soon as the policy editor Windows opens up, go to the following pathway:

Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Search

Step 4. Go to the right-side panel, and double click the “Allow Cortana” option.

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Step 5. Choose “Disabled” option from the new operating Window, and click “Ok”.

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Step 6. Exit the group policy editor windows and reboot your computer to apply the changes.

NOTE: If you wish to enable it again, go the same way as mentioned above and simply choose the “Enabled” option from the drop-down menu.

Conclusion:

So if you are one of those users who have privacy concerns with Cortana since Microsoft is believed to keep track of your details using Cortana, disabling it temporarily or permanently as per your need is the only recommended solution.

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