How to Disable Error Reporting in Windows

Disable Error Reporting to Microsoft in Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, & XP

Screenshot of the Windows Error Reporting Service Properties window in Windows 10
Windows Error Reporting Service (Windows 10).

The error reporting feature in Windows is what produces those alerts after certain program or operating system errors, prompting you to send the information about the problem to Microsoft.

You might want to disable error reporting to avoid sending private information about your computer to Microsoft, because you're not connected to the internet all the time, or just to stop being prompted by the annoying alerts.

Error reporting in enabled by default in all versions of Windows but is easy to turn off from either the Control Panel or from Services, depending on your version of Windows.

Before you disable error reporting, please keep in mind that not only is it beneficial for Microsoft, but it's also ultimately a good thing for you, the Windows owner. These error reports send vital information to Microsoft about a problem that the operating system or a program is having and helps them develop future patches and service packs, making Windows more stable.

The specific steps involved in disabling error reporting depends significantly on which operating system you're using. See What Version of Windows Do I Have? if you're not sure which set of instructions to follow:

Disable Error Reporting in Windows 10

Screenshot showing how to disable Windows Error Reporting in Windows 10
Disabling Error Reporting in Windows 10.
  1. Use the Windows Key+R keyboard shortcut to open the Run dialog box.

  2. Enter services.msc.

  3. Right-click or tap-and-hold Windows Error Reporting Service.

  4. Click or tap Properties.

  5. Click Disabled from the menu next to Startup type.

    Can't select it? If the Startup type menu is grayed out, log out and log back in as an administrator. Or, reopen Services with admin rights, which you can do by opening an elevated Command Prompt and then executing the services.msc command.

  6. Click or tap OK or Apply.

  7. You can now close out of the Services window.

Another way to disable error reporting is through Registry Editor. Navigate to the registry key you see below, and then find the value called Disabled. If it doesn't exist, make a new DWORD value with that exact name.

Screenshot showing how to disable Windows Error Reporting in Windows 10 from Registry Editor
Disabling Error Reporting From the Registry (Windows 10).
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Error Reporting

You can make a new DWORD value from the Edit > New menu in Registry Editor.

Double-click or double-tap the Disabled value to change it from a 0 to a 1, and then save it by selecting OK.

Disable Error Reporting in Windows 8 or Windows 7

Screenshot showing the error reporting options in Windows 8
Disabling Error Reporting in Windows 8.
  1. Click System and Security.

    If you're viewing the Large icons or Small icons view of Control Panel, click Action Center and skip to Step 4.

  2. Click Action Center.

  3. Click Change Action Center settings from the left side of the Action Center window.

  4. Click Problem reporting settings from the Related settings section at the bottom of the window.

  5. Pick one of the four options:

    • Automatically check for solutions (the default option)
    • Automatically check for solutions and send additional report data, if needed
    • Each time a problem occurs, ask me before checking for solutions: Choosing this will keep error reporting enabled but will prevent Windows from automatically notifying Microsoft about the issue. If your concern about error reporting is only privacy related, this is the best option for you.
    • Never check for solutions: This will fully disable error reporting in Windows.

    There's also a Select programs to exclude from reporting option that you're welcome to explore if you'd rather customize reporting instead of completely disable it. This is probably more work than you're interested in, but the option is there if you need it.

    If you can't change these settings because they're grayed out, choose the link at the bottom of the window that says Change report settings for all users.

  6. Click OK on the Problem Reporting Settings window.

  7. Click OK on the Change Action Center settings window.

  8. You can now close the Action Center window.

Disable Error Reporting in Windows Vista

Screenshot showing how to turn off Windows error reporting in Vista
Disabling Error Reporting in Windows Vista.
  1. Click Start and then Control Panel.

  2. Click System and Maintenance.

    If you're viewing the Classic View of Control Panel, double-click Problem Reports and Solutions and skip to Step 4.

  3. Click Problem Reports and Solutions.

  4. Click Change settings on the left side of the window.

  5. Click one of the two available options:

    • Check for solutions automatically (the default option)
    • Ask me to check if a problem occurs

    Choosing this will keep error reporting enabled but will prevent Windows Vista from automatically notifying Microsoft about the issue.

    If your only concern is sending information to Microsoft, you can stop here. If you'd like to fully disable error reporting, you can skip this step and continue on with the remaining instructions below.

  6. Click Advanced settings.

  7. Choose Off under the For my programs, problem reporting is: heading

    There are several advanced options here that you're welcome to explore if you'd rather not completely disable error reporting in Windows Vista, but for the purposes of this tutorial we're going to completely disable the feature.

  8. Click OK.

  9. Click OK on the window with the Choose how to check for solutions to computer problems heading.

    You might notice that the Check for solutions automatically and Ask me to check if a problem occurs options are now grayed out. This is because Windows Vista error reporting is completely disabled and these options are no longer applicable.

  10. Click Close.

  11. You can now close the Problem Reports and Solutions and Control Panel windows.

Disable Error Reporting in Windows XP

Screenshot showing how to turn off Windows XP error reporting
Disabling Error Reporting in Windows XP.
  1. Click Start and then Control Panel.

  2. Click Performance and Maintenance.

    If you're viewing the Classic View of Control Panel, double-click System and skip to Step 4.

  3. Click System under the or pick a Control Panel icon section.

  4. Click the Advanced tab.

  5. Click Error Reporting near the bottom of the window.

  6. Choose Disable error reporting.

    We recommend leaving the But notify me when critical errors occur checkbox checked. You probably still want Windows XP to notify you about the error, just not Microsoft.

  7. Click OK on the Error Reporting window.

  8. Click OK on the System Properties window

  9. You can now close the Control Panel or Performance and Maintenance window.