Here's how to disable Cortana in Windows 10

In Windows 10's Anniversary Update, Microsoft removed the option to disable Cortana. This has made it a lot more difficult to use your computer without encountering Cortana here and there. Fortunately, you can disable Cortana with a trick. Here's how.

Not everyone is happy with Cortana. The virtual assistant raises quite a few questions about privacy, and some people prefer to just search locally on their computer. Since the Anniversary Update of Windows 10, you can no longer just turn Cortana on or off.

You can easily make Cortana invisible by right-clicking on the taskbar and Cortana > Hidden to choose. But Cortana is still active on your PC. If you're on the Windowskey and start typing, you are still presented with all the functionality of Cortana.

To completely disable all functions of Cortana, so that you can only search locally and only see local system functions and the like, you will have to get started yourself. The tips below will disable Cortana on all Windows 10 user accounts on the computer.

Disable Cortana in Windows 10 Pro

If you have the Pro version of Windows 10, you can use the Local Group Policy Editor to disable Cortana. Press on the Windows-key and type gpedit. In the search results, select the option Edit Group Policy.

Go to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Search and put under Allow Cortana the function on Turned off.

Disable Cortana in Windows 10 Home

If you have the Home version of Windows 10, you will have to manually adjust the registry. Press the Windows key and type regedit and open the search result Registry Editor.

Navigate to the key HKEY_Local_Machine\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Search. If this key doesn't exist yet, you'll need to create it. Right-click anywhere in the right panel and choose New > DWORD. Make the value AllowCortana and give it the value 0.

Exit the Registry Editor and restart your computer. You will notice that the search bar will now only search within Windows and all Cortana features will no longer be available.

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