Computers having Windows 7 can’t shut down or restart, here’s a workaround


As most of you know, in mid-January Microsoft discontinued support for Windows 7, but a bug preventing users to shut down or restarting their computers will have to roll out a software update to solve it as users are reporting a weird bug that is preventing users from shutting down or restarting their PCs.

Nobody knows what’s causing this bug. A post on Reddit in a Windows Community is reporting that can’t shut down his computer because of lack of permission. The post is somewhat popular with more than 200 comments from users reporting they have the same issue, someone is giving some solutions on how they could solve this bug.

The bug is that when you try to turn off your computer you just receive a pop-up message saying: “You don’t have permission to shut down this computer.” No comment from Microsoft have been received about this situation, users are now searching and applying manual fixes. Some users are applying temporary workaround and others are doing technical approach to bypass the bug.

I’m going to offer 4 ways to bypass the bug.

The first workaround is hit Ctrl+Alt Del and then click the red power icon in the lower right-hand corner of the Windows. It will allow you to shut down the computer.

Here’s the temporary workaround, which users are sharing on Reddit and other platforms:

  1. Create another admin account, log into it
  2. Log into the default admin account again
  3. Shut down or restart as usual

Another workaround would be the following steps:

  1. Open Notepad, you can open it by pressing they keys Windows + R then type notepad and hit enter.
  2. After you’ve opened it, you’re going to write the following
    • For shutting down the computer write this: shutdown -s -f -t 01
    • For restarting the computer write this: shutdown -r -f -t 01
  3. Save the file, to save it, click File / Save As… give a name to the file ending with *.bat, depending of what you want, if restart or shutdown. Example: shutdown.bat.
  4. In the Save as type: select the option All Files (*.*) and name the file restart.bat or shutdown.bat and save it in the desktop so you can find it faster.

Every time you need to restart or shutdown your computer, you just need to double click one of these files and it will do the job for you.

Another workaround was offered by Quick Heal, an IT support company, announced another option for users running into this bug. This is a permanent solution. Take these steps if you’re not satisfied with the provided temporary workaround:

  1. Press ‘Windows’ and ‘R’ keys together to open a run window
  2. Type ‘gpedit.msc’ and click ‘OK’
  3. Go to ‘Computer Configuration’ > ‘Windows Settings’ > ‘Security Settings’ > ‘Local Policies’ > ‘Security Options’
  4. In the right-side panel, double-click ‘User Account Control: Run all administrators in Admin Approval Mode’ and select ‘Enable’
  5. Reopen the run window and type ‘gpupdate /force’
  6. Shut down or restart as usual

It serves as a more permanent solution, but Microsoft might still look at the bug and push a system-level fix to all users. More than 200 million PCs worldwide are running outdated versions of Windows, and most of them are on Windows 7.

Users and organizations with Windows 7-based equipment should upgrade to Windows 10 immediately. It’s the latest version of Windows, and you’re guaranteed new features and security patches for several years. PCs are vulnerable to attacks, and an outdated version like Windows 7 certainly puts you at a higher risk.