How to disable Help feature in Windows(Stop “Help” when F1 pressed)

The key F1 is for “help”, at least Windows thinks so. In most cases, we open the help page by accidentally pressing on the F1 but not really seeking for help, sometimes it also open the browser directly before we realize, which brings us a lot of trouble.

We can disable Help feature in Windows (especially when we press F1) by following steps:

  1. Open File Explorer

  2. Go to C:\Windows

  3. Find out HelpPane.exe, rename it to anything else(Recommend HelpPane_Backup.exe for future use)

This operation prevents Windows from finding the target file when F1 is pressed.


If you get an Permission error when trying to rename the file, take the following steps:

  1. Run cmd as administrator:

    • Right click on Start, select “Command Prompt (Admin)”. (Windows10)
    • Or press Win+S or click on the search icon on taskbar, search for cmd, right-click the cmd.exe and select run as administrator. (Windows10)
    • Or go to start, search for cmd, right-click the cmd.exe and select run as administrator. (Windows7)
  2. In the command prompt, enter this command: takeown /f c:\windows\helppane.exe Press enter and you should get a success message.

  3. Right click on HelpPane.exe, select Properties, go to Securities tab.

  4. Find your user name, click Edit and check the box labeled Full Control, and hit okay, choose Apply.

Now you should be able to rename HelpPane.exe.


Please note:

We could disable Help feature by renaming the HelpPane.exe file, but this operation may influence the system in some aspects.

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