Focus On Your Tasks

Written by Eric Wyatt (last updated May 31, 2021)

With Windows 8 we were introduced to Quiet Hours, a feature that disabled all notifications during established times. With notifications such as email, calendar appointments, calls, alarms and more, you can be easily distracted every time a new notification shows up on in the lower right corner of your screen. With the April 10, 2018, update for Windows 10, Quiet Hours is now renamed Focus Assist, and given new capabilities to help you focus on your projects. The new update allows for better customization and smart notification control.

To begin using Focus Assist:

  1. Click on the Start button in the bottom left corner. Windows displays the Start screen.
  2. Click on the Settings button (it looks like a small gear). Windows displays the Settings dialog box.
  3. Click on System. Windows displays the System screen.
  4. Click on Focus Assist. Windows will then open the Focus Assist screen.

Alternatively, in the search bar you can type Focus Assist and press Enter. Windows opens the Focus Assist screen of the Settings window. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. The Focus Assist Screen.

Once Focus Assist is open you are presented with three options:

  • Off: (Default Setting) Disables Focus Assist, Windows 10 will show you all notifications from your system, apps.
  • Priority only: Focus Assist will only show notifications from the from the items you have defined in your priority list.
  • Alarms only: Focus Assist will only allow system alarms to suppress all notifications while focus assist is enabled, except for alarms.

Below the three choices you will find the Automatic Rules section. This section provides further customization for Focus Assist.

  • During these Times: This section allows you to set the specified time you want Focus Assist to automatically be turned on. You can also choose the type between Priority Only, or Alarms Only.
  • When I'm Duplicating My Display: This section allows turns Focus Assist on automatically when you are duplicating your monitor, such as when you're giving a presentation.
  • When I'm Playing A Game: This section allows for Focus Assist to be turned on automatically when you play a game in full screen mode.

Focus Assist can help you to become distraction-free during the times you need to pay attention and not be distracted by various interruptions from your computer.

 This tip (13533) applies to Windows 10.

Author Bio

Eric Wyatt

Eric Wyatt is a swell guy (or so his friends tell him). He is a formally trained designer and branding expert, bringing a wide range of skills to his Tips.Net articles. ...

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