Whether you manage company systems or don’t want children or siblings playing around with your machine, you can easily block them from installing software in Windows 10. Programs can bring bloat, or worse to a system so controlling exactly who can install what and where is an essential part of computer management. Here’s how to prevent users from installing software in Windows 10.
Prevent users from installing software in Windows 10
We can use Group Policy Editor to disable the Windows installer. This is the simplest way to prevent software installation.
1. Type or paste ‘gpedit.msc’ into the Search Windows box. You should see the Group Policy Editor box open.
2. Navigate to Computer Configurations, Administrative templates, Windows Components and Windows Installer.
3. Right click Windows Installer and select Edit.
4. Select Enabled in the top pane.
5. Select an option in the bottom pane, you can choose from ‘For non-managed applications only’, ‘Always’ or ‘Never’.
6. Select OK.
‘For non-managed applications only’ means users can only install programs assigned to the desktop by the administrator. ‘Always’ disables Windows Installer altogether while ‘Never’ means it is enabled for all users.
Prevent software installation through command line
As usual there is a command line method to prevent users from installing software in Windows 10.
1. Type or paste ‘regedit' into the Search Windows box.
2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Classes\Msi.Package\DefaultIcon.
3. Right click, select Edit and change the 0 to a 1 to disable Windows Installer.
More Windows security tweaks:
How to set your network location in Windows 10
How to Turn On or Off System Protection and Manually create Restore Points in Windows 10
How to Enable or Disable the Lock Screen in Windows 10