Removing the Windows 10 upgrade nag

As Windows 10 approaches its first release, Microsoft has begun pushing eligible Win7 users to “reserve their upgrade”. Admittedly the little nag is subtle – a white Windows icon in the system tray – but it’s a persistent little thing.


Windows Vista, 7 and up will automatically hide other system tray icons unless you explicitly tell it not to, but it leaves this one alone. And if you use the Customize Notification Area Options screen to hide it – as most online advice tells you to do – it’ll just come right back the next time you boot your PC. That’s right; Windows’ own method for getting rid of annoying tray icons does not work (permanently) on the Windows 10 nag.

Yes it’s a small thing, but I don’t like it, and getting rid of it is easy with PTFB Pro, as follows.

Step 1: Open up PTFB Pro and create a new ProgMon Macro


Step 2: Scroll down and select the “GWX.exe” process. That’s the little critter behind the Windows 10 nag icon. Click Next once you’ve got it selected.


Step 3: Choose the action, which in this case is “Force the program to exit”. Click Next once more and choose the method of execution; “Request Quit” will do just fine but if you’re feeling vindictive you can use “Forced Exit”. Click Finish, and you’re done.


As soon as you put PTFB Pro to work by clicking Start Watching, the Windows 10 nag is history. As long as PTFB Pro is running (and you can set it to autostart on boot) you’ll never see that nag again. And it’s no great loss, because if you’re like me, you’re only going to install Windows 10 on an a work computer when two crucial criteria are met:

  • Windows 10 has been out long enough to have the huge list of initial bugs and driver problems corrected by patches and maybe service pack 1
  • There’s an option to do a clean install, because upgrade install just never go well

That’s just one small way in which PTFB Pro can get rid of daily nuisances in Windows. Once you’ve tried PTFB Pro you’ll wonder how you ever managed without it, and you can try it free for 30 days here: