Blocking Automatic Installation of Microsoft Edge

by Eric Wyatt
(last updated December 30, 2019)

5

In January 2020, Microsoft will release its new web browser, Microsoft Edge Chromium. This new browser is built on the Chromium engine and will allow, as Microsoft claims, "best in class compatibility with extensions and web sites, with great support for the latest rendering capabilities, modern web applications, and powerful developer tools across all supported platforms."

What this means is that the new browser will be faster and more secure than the current Edge browser. The Chromium engine is a free, open-source web browser developed by Google. The Chromium engine is the basis for many various browsers today, such as Google Chrome, Opera, and more. Each browser, while using the same underlying architecture, makes changes to make theirs unique from each other.

Microsoft is expected to make Edge Chromium available for Windows 7 through 10 and macOS, as well. For many of these operating systems, installation will need to be done by choice. For Windows 10 users (at least those running version 1803 and newer) Microsoft is making this choice for you. Starting January 16, 2020, the new browser will be automatically installed, replacing the existing Edge browser.

If you prefer to choose when your browser gets upgraded, or you have any other reason not to want the upgrade, Microsoft has provided a way to prevent the automatic update. On December 16th Microsoft released the Blocker Toolkit. This tool allows you to configure your machine to stop the automatic update. If you choose not to update and wish to block Edge Chromium, follow these simple steps:

  1. Go to Microsoft Support page in your web browser of choice.
  2. Download the Blocker Toolkit executable file; the link is on the support page. This downloads the file to your browser's download folder.
  3. Navigate to wherever the file was saved and double-click on the MicrosoftEdgeChromiumBlockerToolkit.exe file. This opens a License Agreement dialog box.
  4. If you agree to the License terms, click on the Yes button. This closes the License Agreement dialog box and opens a window asking where you would like to install the extracted file.
  5. Click on Browse. This opens a Browse for Folder window. (See Figure 1.)
  6. Figure 1. The Browse for Folder window.

  7. Navigate to the location where you want the files extracted and click the OK button. For me, I had created a folder called "Edge Blocker" in my Downloads folder. After you press OK, The Browse for Folder window closes.
  8. With the Pathname entered in the Location window click OK. (See Figure 2.) Remember the file location for running the script. Clicking OK closes the window and extracts the files to your designated location.
  9. Figure 2. The File Location window with the file path entered.

Now that you have downloaded and extracted the needed files you need to actually run the Blocker script. These simple steps are the final ones needed to prevent Edge Chromium from being automatically installed:

  1. Press the Windows key and type (without quotes) "CMD." Do not press Enter yet; Windows should show you a few options on the screen.
  2. To use the Blocker script you need to run Command Prompt as an Administrator. Either right-click on the Command Prompt search result and choose "Run As Administrator" or press Ctrl+Shift+Enter. Either approach launches Command Prompt in Admin mode. You will be able to tell it is in Admin mode if the resulting Command prompt window shows "\Windows\system32>" as the prompt. (The prompt may vary a bit depending on your exact version of Windows.)
  3. Enter the CD command followed by the file location from step 7 above and press Enter. In my instance I would type (without quotes) "cd C:\Users\eric\Downloads\Edge Blocker".
  4. Now type (again, without quotes) the following command-line syntax to run the script, "EdgeChromium_Blocker.cmd /b" then press Enter.

When completed, the command prompt will notify you if the blocking of the deployment was successful or not. Now Edge Chromium will not be installed on your machine. (See Figure 3.)

Figure 3. Command Prompt Showing that Edge Blocker has been deployed correctly.

After running the script if you decide that you do want to install Edge Chromium, run steps 1 through 3 again and then enter at the command prompt (without quotes) "EdgeChromium_Blocker.cmd /u". This turns Edge Blocker off and allows Edge Chromium to be installed during the next automatic update of Windows.

With this little script you can decide whether this particular program is installed or not on your machine, putting the choice back into your hands. It is important to note that this only stops the automatic download and installation. It does not prevent a manual download and installation by another user on your computer.

 This tip (13719) 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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What is five more than 5?

2020-01-20 12:54:27

Hazel Kohler

I've tried to run this, but the Command screen flashes up for a split second, then disappears. I've also tried changing to system32 manually, which works, but then the cd command to the folder where I've stored the Chromium Blocker files returns a "not found" error. Any suggestions about what might be happening here?


2020-01-08 11:35:17

GuelphNana

Thank you, Eric, for your reply to our question. Edge is not my default browser, but I am comfortable with the upcoming update.


2020-01-07 18:05:30

Eric Wyatt

If you work in an environment in which which has a specific network policy, or you are uncomfortable with changes, as some users are. Another reason is you do not use Edge and prefer instead to use another web browser. This could also happen simply because you want to be in control of which programs are installed on your computer.


2020-01-07 16:05:17

Alison J Miller

GuelphNana. That is a very good question and one I would like the answer to as well. What are the reasons for blocking this download? Is it a huge file that's going to make our computer lag? It is going to take over other things on the computer as well? Will we not be able to change the default browser away from Edge?


2019-12-31 12:54:04

GuelphNana

My grandson who is a computer geek of sorts is wondering why you would suggest blocking this Edge update?


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