When you launch or restart MT4, it might run live update automatically and restart without any prompt. I am sure you have seen this before, which sometimes is annoying. MetaQuotes are constantly improving their software and rolls out these updates quite often lately.
Preventing updates does not necessarily mean that old MetaTrader 4 is better. We should be happy about updates, because without regular software updates it would not work well.
However, if for some reason you do not want to update your MT4 platform, here’s a simple trick to prevent it from doing it. Admit it. Many times when you start your MT4 just for a quick script or indicator test it is quite annoying to see that MT4 is forcibly restarted without your knowledge to do an update.
UAC allows you to prevent MetaTrader 4 Update
For this to work you need to have a “User Account Control” (or UAC for short) option enabled on your computer. This can be done in the “Control Panel” and then “User Accounts“.
Example in the image above is from Windows 10 operating system, so it might look a bit different on your computer if you are using some other version of Windows. The UAC was introduced in Windows Vista and since then available in all Windows versions including Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10.
IMPORTANT! This will not work on some OS versions like Windows 2008R2, unless you work as a standard user (non-Administrator account).
Once I click the “Change User Account Control settings” I get the following window.
I have my settings set to “Always notify” and you need to do the same. Move the slider to the very top and then click OK.
When you have “User Account Control” enabled at this level, Windows will always ask if you want to allow any installation that is about to happen on your computer.
This means every time MT4 will want to update itself without prior notice, Windows will still ask if you want to proceed. MT4 live update will not be able to run without your confirmation.
And the best part is this update prevention technique works on VPS servers as well.
How does MT4 Live Update work
Let me explain how MT4 Live Update works and how you can know your MT4 will be upgraded on next launch.
I have an older MT4 Build 840 running on my VPS server. I see the exact MT4 version and build number in the “About” window you can access from the top “Help” menu.
When I close this MetaTrader platform and start it again, I see the following message printed in the Journal tab: “LiveUpdate: new version 4.00 build 890 is available“. This means MT4 has started download update installation files to your computer.
When MT4 update finished downloading you will see a message printed “LiveUpdate: finished“. This means when I restart MT4 an update will be applied to my MT4 platform. If you want to avoid MT4 live update from running, then make sure you enable UAC before you open MT4 platform again.
Here’s what happens when I restart my MT4 with Windows UAC enabled.
Windows UAC stops MT4 update process and asks for your confirmation. Now it’s your choice what will you answer. If you answer NO, your trading platform will not be upgraded and you will be able to use current version you have installed. If you answer YES, then obviously MT4 will be upgraded.
I’ve answered YES and my MT4 platforms is restarted in a few moments. MT4 LiveUpdate runs in background and you actually do not see anything. Main program files are automatically updated and then MetaTrader is loaded.
Here’s what I see in the Journal tab when update process begins.
Then, seconds later I see these messages which tell me update is finished and I am already running latest version of MT4 Build 890.
Now if I open “Help -> About…” window it obviously shows me that I am using MetaTrader version 4.00 Build 890.
Why avoid MT4 upgrade?
Personally I do not recommend you skip MT4 updates. But I’ve seen many traders who want to stay with an older version of MT4.
Here are a few reasons why anyone want to prevent MetaTrader update:
- You just restarted your MT4 to check how your EA is working and now MT4 is trying to apply update and restart it again. If you know that your EA will malfunction on restart after it did not get enough time to properly load, then you might want to prevent MT4 from updating this time.
- You have some old Expert Advisor, Indicator or Script, which works only on old MT4 (like Build 509 for example) and you do not want it to be updated.
- You have just restarted your VPS server and need to launch multiple MetaTrader 4 instances. Say first or some other MT4 instance asks for permission to be updated. If you do not have enough time at the moment and just want to launch all MT4’s for work, you can obviously prevent all MT4 updates. Later, when you have enough time, you may come back and update all MT4 instances.
It is very easy to prevent MetaTrader 4 platform from updating itself without using any confusing tricks that other blogs give you. I’ve seen other ways to avoid MT4 update where you need to delete files or rename folders on your computer, but actually this simple method I’ve explained in my blog post is the easiest way to control if and which MT4 platforms you want to update or not.
Now post a comment below and let us know if you update MT4 every time you are forced to, or you are using any technique to avoid upgrade?