How to pause, or even stop all Windows 10 Notifications

Dave W. Shanahan

Microsoft, Windows 10, Notifications, Settings

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There are plenty of ways on how to manage your notifications in Windows 10. However, I find that I am much more productive when I stop all notifications in Windows 10. No distractions make it easier to focus on your work. There are two options here; turn on Focus Assist between certain times when you want no distractions, or turn off all Windows 10 notifications. Here’s what you need to do both.

Focus Assist

Focus Assist was first introduced early last year as a renamed Quiet Hours, a way to pause notifications when you need to “stay focused.” In order to see Focus Assist settings, go to Settings > System > Focus assist.

Microsoft, Windows 10, Focus Assist, Settings

Focus Assist has three options available for notifications:

  1. Off: Get all notifications from your apps and contacts.
  2. Priority Only: See only selected notifications from the priority list. The rest will go straight to the action center.
  3. Alarms only: Hide all notifications, except for alarms.

One of the issues with Focus Assist is that you need to go through all your apps and pick which ones you consider “Priority” apps. It would be easier if Microsoft could learn which apps you use the most and automatically pick the priority apps for you.

Additionally, Focus Assist has four automatic rules available to enable Focus Assist in different scenarios:

  1. During these times (Priority only)
  2. When I’m duplicating my display (Alarms only)
  3. When I’m playing a game (Priority only)
  4. When I’m at home (Priority only)

The issues with these automatic rules are you need to disable some privacy settings, including location, and some people, like myself, are not ready to give up my privacy for the sake of stopping Windows 10 notifications.

Notifications & actions

Go to Settings > Notifications & actions

Here you can add, remove, or rearrange your Quick actions that appear in the action center as well as manage notifications in Windows 10.

Here’s how to stop all in Windows 10 notifications. Please note: you may still need to disable notifications from within third-party apps and app launchers installed on your Windows 10 PC.

Microsoft, Windows 10, Focus Assist, Settings
Under Notifications, toggle these options off:

  1. Show notifications on the lock screen.
  2. Show reminders and incoming VoIP calls on the lock screen.
  3. Show me the Windows welcome experience after updates and occasionally when I sign in to highlight what’s new and suggested.
  4. Get tips, tricks, and suggestions as you use Windows.
  5. Get notifications from apps and other senders.

You’re done! You will no longer receive Windows 10 notifications.