If you’re looking for a way to prevent people from shutting down or logging out of Windows, you’ve come to the right place. Whatever your reason, there are several ways to remove all options for shutting down or logging off Windows.
By default, there are several ways to shut down a Windows computer: Click Start and Turn Off / Shut Down, Press CTRL + ALT + DEL and select Shut Down, open a command prompt and enter the shutdown command, or install a third. a third-party application that shuts down your computer for you.
In this article, I will go over each method and learn how to block shutdown. Please note that your mileage will depend on which version of Windows you have. If you are using Home or an earlier version of Windows, none of the options listed below will be available.
Remove the shutdown options
First, you can remove the Shut Down Computer button from the Start menu and from the CTRL + ALT + DEL screen using the Group Policy Editor. Please note that this editor is not available in Windows Home and Starter editions.
Click Start, type gpedit.msc and press Enter. In the left pane, expand User Configuration and then Administrative Templates. Finally, click “Start” and “Taskbar”. Note that you can also navigate to the same location under Computer Configuration if you want the setting to apply to all users of the computer.
Now, in the right pane, double-click Uninstall and deny access to the Shut Down, Restart, Sleep and Hibernate commands and set it to Enabled. In the description, you will notice that this will remove the shutdown option from the Start Menu and Task Manager.
However, the user can still just log out of Windows and then press the power button from there which will remain even after enabling the above option.
To prevent this, you need to find the “Remove Logout on Startup” menu option in the same section and also change it to “Enabled” (only under User Configuration). Now the user will not be able to log out and will be unable to open this screen. However, if the computer restarts for any specific reason, the logon screen appears and the computer can be shut down. To prevent this scenario, you can also configure Group Policy to only shut down the computer at logon.
Computer Configuration – Windows Settings – Security Options – Local Policies – Security Settings and scroll down to Shutdown: Allow system shutdown without logging in and set it to Disabled.
Finally, you need to prevent people from going to the command line and just typing shutdown! To do this, go to the following policy:
User Configuration – Administrative Templates – System and double click Deny access to command line policy and set it to Enabled.
Note that everything in the User Configuration section will apply to all users, even the administrator account, so be careful and make sure you leave the option to restore access if necessary. I usually leave the option for the Run command on the Start menu so that I can access Group Policy later. If you remove this option too, you will effectively lock yourself out.
There is a way to apply local group policies to all users except for the administrator account, but this requires a few steps. Microsoft has written a Knowledge Base article on exactly how to do this.
Finally, to prevent users from installing third-party programs to shut down their computer, you can create a standard (non-administrator) user account in Windows. The standard account does not have permission to install software most of the time. If you really want to prevent the installation of any software, please use the following policy:
Computer Configuration – Administrative Templates – Windows Components – Windows Installer and click Disable Windows Installer or Disable Windows Installer.
Set it to Enabled and select Always from the drop-down list. Note that standard user accounts also cannot access the Group Policy Editor, so this is another good reason to use a non-admin account.
If the user is logged in as a regular user, it also ensures that someone cannot use the Windows remote shutdown command to shutdown the computer.
Finally, as an additional backup, you can also make sure that shutdown privilege is revoked from normal user accounts. You can do this by going to the following policy:
Computer Configuration Windows Settings Security Settings Local Policies User Rights Assignment and click Shut Down.
By default, you will see several groups already listed here, depending on which version of Windows you have installed. The easiest way is to delete the Users group and leave the rest. Thus, you will have the right to shutdown, but the regular users will not. Even if they manage to find a way to send a shutdown signal to Windows, it will be blocked by this policy.
This is all about different ways to shut down your Windows computer, so hopefully this applies to everything. Again, this will only work on Pro or later versions of Windows. If you have any questions, please leave a comment. Enjoy!