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Nov 11, 2016
10 min read
Some iOS, Android, Windows Phone or PC, macOS, and Apple TV users might have issues with app compatibility when upgraded to a later version of their Operating Systems. Some other users might know the issue and won’t upgrade to a later version, but it seems irritating when the OS update prompt pops up every time. Some updates end up eating significant bandwidth of data and keep the device battery running down a lot faster than usual. Some people don’t want some changes happening to the software in the first place, especially if they are contented with the current version and don’t want to relearn all the new features from scratch. Also, new updates may cause some weird issues, and it may take some time to get them fixed. It is always good to update the software to a newer version at a later time with the user’s express permission. So, many of you might have the question of how to block automatic updates in iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and tvOS devices. Well, this article will guide you through the process of blocking OS updates in iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and Apple TV.
Keep in mind that most of these process are manual and cannot be done with an MDM service. Do it at your own risk as we will not be responsible for data loss or any other issues that might encounter in this process.
iOS download updates automatically and ask you every time whether to install it. Blocking iOS updates is a two-step process. The first thing to do is to disable automatic download of system updates, so the device will not download any updates, and then delete the file that is already downloaded.
The apple servers mesu.apple.com and appldnld.apple.com are responsible for OS updates, where mesu.apple.com provides information about an OS update and appldnld.apple.com provides the update. Blocking these servers can block downloading updates automatically. The appldnld.apple.com not only provides updates to OS but to other apps too, so you will not be able to download other software or updates if you block it.
Probably from the backside of the router, you’ll find an IP address that will take you to the router settings page and a password. If you have them both, follow these steps to block iOS updates:
Using the MDM policy, iOS updates can be delayed to up to 90 days. Users will not be able to see the update until the specified number of days the software update has been delayed. After the delay period, users will be prompted to update to the earliest version of the software update available.
There do not seem to have an effective workaround here. Since we don’t have another choice, try this method:
There is another setting in Android hidden deep inside the developer options, which can be toggled to disable automatic system updates.
Schedule OS update policy for Android allows admins to configure system update settings for Android Enterprise device owner devices. Choosing the Postpone update option helps in delaying the OS updates to up to 30 days.
Your device will not download or upgrade to Windows 10 automatically. Windows 10 update will not show up even if you go and search for updates. Windows 10 update shows up only when an app named Upgrade Advisor is installed on your Windows Phone.
If you are on Windows 8 or 8.1, then go to Settings > Phone Update and uncheck “Automatically download updates if my data settings allow it”. That’ll help.
The other way suggested is to connect the same Wi-Fi network to a Windows PC and set the network as metered, the PC will then sync the settings to the phone. This is not checked, though.
Updates can be blocked in Windows 10 PC either by setting Wi-Fi as metered connection or by stopping and disabling Background Intelligence Transfer Service (BITS). We can hope Microsoft will bring a similar feature in any newer updates of Windows Mobile.
In earlier versions of Windows, there’s an option to turn off automatic updates. But in Windows 10, there are no such options.
If you are using Wi-Fi on your PC, then setting the Wi-Fi as metered connection can prevent downloading updates in the background. To set the network as metered connection, go to Start Menu > Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi. Connect to any Wi-Fi network to set it as metered connection. When you are connected go to Advanced Options and turn on metered connection.
This will not help if you are on a wired network. In this case, you can stop BITS (works only on Windows 10 with anniversary update) to get rid of this problem. To stop BITS on your Windows PC,
You can still turn off BITS and disable it if you are on a Windows 10 without an anniversary update, but BITS will turn on automatically in 1-15 minutes.
If you are on Windows 10 Pro, you can try this too:
Defering Windows upgrade will download security updates only and will not install feature updates on your PC. To defer upgrades, follow any of these two methods:
Sometimes what you really need is just to postpone the system to be updated a fewer days later a new update is actually launched. This can be done on Windows 10 devices using the Pause Update feature. Windows updates can be paused up to a particular date.
You can resume updates anytime you prefer by changing the update settings and clicking on Resume updates.
MDM policy allows admins to restrict users from downloading Windows beta updates on Windows 10 devices.
Anyone administrating a Mac computer can prevent macOS updates from Apple from automatically downloading and installing to your Mac devices by disabling the option in Mac System Preferences.
Mac administrators can use a Configuration profile to block system updates from automatically downloading to their mac devices. In the com.apple.SoftwareUpdate domain set the AutomaticDownload key to False and push this configuration profile to the Mac devices on which the automatic software updates are to be blocked.
The Mac terminal allows the system administrators to block automatic updates using the following command:
sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.SoftwareUpdate AutomaticDownload -boolean FALSE
For Mac devices enrolled via Apple’s Device Enrollment Program, there are options to schedule macOS updates to be only downloaded but installed manually at a later time.
On devices running macOS 10.10+, MDM restriction can be pushed to disable software update notifications on devices.
Apple TV also allows admins to block tvOS updates from pushing automatically to their devices. Like all other devices, these system update preferences can be configured from the device Settings itself.
For Apple TV 4K or Apple TV HD,
For Apple TV (3rd generation),