How to automatically close apps during Windows 10 shutdown

Often, when you try to shut down, reboot, or exit Windows, you may have seen the operating system that reports that an app prevents this. To turn off the system, you need to click on the appropriate button to force the software to stop the interfering procedure.

If you do not click the button within a certain period of time, Windows 10 will cancel the action you ordered. Is there a way to prevent and automatically force applications to shut down when restarting/shutting down the computer?

Force automatic closing of apps when Windows 10 is restarted/shut down

Typically, when you shut down or restart the system, Windows attempts to automatically close all applications. However, when an application is doing something quite “challenging” in the background or if there is any unsaved open file, it could stop Windows from crashing.

This behavior of your operating system is actually an advantage: this allows you to save, for example, a document you forgot to save. However, it is also true that sometimes some programs systematically block the restart for very mysterious reasons.

How to activate “AutoEndTasks” for a single user

If you want to prevent applications from blocking the system shutdown or restart for the current user, follow this part of the article.

Always keep in mind that no other user on your system will be affected by the changes made by following this chapter. Also, since we’re going to edit the Windows logs, run the appropriate backups. If you are not familiar with regedit and registry keys, desist or contact a more experienced user.

If you feel ready, you can proceed with the following procedure:

  • go to the Start menu and, in Search programs and files, type regedit
  • copy and paste it under the path in the Registry Editor’s address bar and press Enter. You will be taken to the destination key instantly: HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Control Panel \ Desktop
  • Once you are here, right click on the right panel and select New and then String Value
  • rename it as AutoEndTasks
  • double-click on the value you just created and type 1 in the value data field. Finally click on the OK button to save the changes.

For the changes to take effect, do not forget to reboot the system.

In case you want to cancel this operation later, you just delete the value AutoEndTasks or change the value data by setting in the appropriate field 0.

How to activate “AutoEndTasks” for a single user

If you want to automatically close apps for all users during reboot or shutdown, you can do so by slightly changing the procedure mentioned above. In fact, making changes to all users of the operating system requires administrative privileges.

  • search regedit again via Start
  • right click on the regedit icon and select Run as administrator
  • follow the path: HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Control Panel\Desktop
  • on the right panel, right-click and select NewString Value
  • assign the name AutoEndTasks to the value and press enter to confirm
  • after creating the value, double-click on it to open the Edit Value window. So type 1 in the value data field and click on the OK button to save the changes.

Restart your system. From this point on, the apps will not block the reboot or shutdown process for any user on your system. Again, to go back, you need to change the value data by setting it to 0 or directly by deleting the AutoEndTasks value.

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About Tarun Bhardwaj

I'm a fan of the world of video games for PCs since childhood, from the days of games on Floppy Disk and the last glories of the Commodore, reading magazines such as PC Gamer, Games For My Computer and many others. Even the other platforms intrigue me, but the first love never forgets.

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