Windows

What is Cortona: How to disable Cortana via the registry or GPO

Cortana is a virtual assistant developed by Microsoft, which uses the Bing search engine to perform tasks such as setting reminders and answering questions for the user.

Part A: Therefore, Cortana helps you save time and focus attention on what matters most in the following ways below.

How is Cortana being used?
- To get started, select the Cortana icon on the taskbar. If you’re not sure what to say, try asking, "What can you do?"

Below are some things Cortana can do for you:
– Manage your calendar and keep your schedule up to date
– Join a meeting or find out when your next Microsoft Teams is.
– Create and manage lists
– Set reminders and alarms
– Find facts, definitions, and info
– Open apps on your computer

How to modify some Cortana settings: Below are the steps

– Open Cortana as shown below,

– Select Settings, and then under “Talk to Cortana”
– Switch the word toggle to On as it relates to you.

Cortana is only available in certain countries and regions, and some Cortana features might not be available everywhere. A list of regions and languages Cortana is available in can be found in this list.

Part B: Disable Cortana via the Local Group Policy:
– Please visit the following links for more on Group Policy Objects and GPO 🙂 respectively.

Note: You can also have this done domain wide. The steps are a bit the same, and you will have to specify where the policy will apply.

To open the Local Group Policy Editor, press Windows key + R.
– Type: gpedit.msc into the window and press click on OK as shown below.

Note: You can use the Windows Search for this as well by simply typing “regedit.msc”.

Navigate through the following path below
– Computer configuration
– Administrative Templates
– Windows Component
– Search

Click on the settings “Allow Cortana” and set this to “Disabled” as shown below.

When you are done, click on Ok.

This policy will be applied by default after 90 minutes. In order to ensure the policy applies immediately, run “gpupdate” or “gpupdate /force” from the command-line. To learn more about these switches, see “All about GPUpdate Switches: GPUpdate vs GPUpdate /force

Part C: Disable Cortana via the Registry:
Please visits the following link for more topics on Registry. To open the Windows Registry, follow the steps below.

– Press Windows key + R or search for “run” from the Windows search.
– Type: regedit into the window and press click on OK as shown below.

This will open the Windows registry. For the same of this issue, see the following hyperlinks for what is Registry Editor and how to access the registry hives and how to search through Windows Registry.

Navigate to the following key in the left sidebar

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Search

As you can see above, there is no Windows Search and if you cannot see a “Windows Search” key (folder) below the Windows folder, perform the following steps below. But if you have the key, please skip the below procedure and change the value of the DWord for “AllowCortana” value to “0“.

– Right-click the Windows folder and select New > Key.
– Name it Windows Search

Right-click the Windows Search key (folder) in the left pane and
– Select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value

Name the value AllowCortana.

Double-click it and set the value to 0. That is all that needs to be done.
– You can now close the “Registry Editor” and
– Reboot your PC for the settings to apply.

I hope you found this blog post helpful. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comment session.

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