How to Allow or Prevent App Running in Background in Windows 11

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This article describes steps one can take to allow or prevent apps from running in the background in Windows 11.

Windows allows you to manage background activity for apps. You can determine what an app does when it is running in the background and not actively in use.

Apps that can run in the background can send and receive notifications, sync information, and stay up to date. If you do not want to app to run in the background, or if the app is using a lot of battery when running in the background, you can change the setting for apps that allow it.

There are three states one can choose for apps that run in the background:

  • Always. The app is always allowed to run in the background
  • Power optimized (recommended). Windows will decide based on battery needs.
  • Never. When you’re not actively using the app, it won’t run in the background.

How to stop or allow apps to run in the background in Windows 11

As described above, Windows allows you to manage background activity for apps. You can determine what an app does when it is running in the background and not actively in use.

Below is how to change background app behavior in Windows 11.

Windows 11 has a centralized location for the majority of its settings. From system configurations to creating new users and updating Windows, all can be done from its System Settings pane.

To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + I shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings as shown in the image below:

windows 11 new settings button
windows 11 new settings button

Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.

Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In the Windows Settings app, click Apps on the left.

windows 11 settings apps on menu
Windows 11 settings apps on the menu

On the right, select the Installed app’s tile to expand.

windows 11 settings installed apps
windows 11 settings installed apps

On the System -> Apps -> Installed apps settings pane, click the menu (three-dotted) button for the Windows app you want to change its settings.

windows 11 installed apps settings menu
Windows 11 installed apps settings menu

On the menu fly-out window, select Advanced options as highlighted below.

windows 11 installed apps settings menu advanced options
Windows 11 installed apps settings menu advanced options

On the System -> Apps -> Installed apps -> App name, under Background apps permissions, choose what background action to allow for the specific app.

Always. The app is always allowed to run in the background
Power optimized (recommended). Windows will decide based on battery needs.
Never. When you’re not actively using the app, it won’t run in the background.

windows 11 let this app run in background
windows 11 let this app run in the background

Whatever option you choose will apply to the selected app.

Note: If you want your device to stay connected and get app updates, you must set at least one app to Always.

That should do it!

Reference:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/manage-background-activity-for-apps-in-windows-4f32dffe-b97c-40e8-a790-3ca10373a1ef

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to manage background apps in Windows 11. If you find any error above or have something to add, please use the comment form below.