S Mode is a Windows 10 and 11 feature that improves security and system performance. It comes preinstalled on some devices.
You get faster boot time, longer battery life, and quality performance. And since you can only use apps from the Microsoft Store, your computer becomes more secure.
Yet, there are many cons to using Windows in S mode. You can’t use any tools that can change system behavior like PowerShell, Command Prompt, Registry Editor, and so on. Many users also consider being unable to use any non-store apps as a severe limitation.
Should I Switch Out of S Mode
Below mentioned are some cases where you need to switch out of S mode.
- To use programs that are unavailable in Microsoft Store or have compatibility issues.
- To connect to an on-premise domain in Windows Pro or Enterprise editions.
- To join any domain in Windows Home version.
- To upgrade to Windows 11 Pro or Enterprise editions.
- Windows S mode does not support your peripheral device.
Note: The number of incompatible apps and devices will decrease with time. Check the official Microsoft website for the latest information.
How to Switch Out of S Mode
Switching out of S mode is easy. But keep in mind that you can’t get back into this mode after switching out. You also need to sign in with a Microsoft Account to disable S mode. Follow the instructions below to switch out of S mode:
- Press Windows + I to launch Settings.
- Go to Update & Security or System and select Activation.
- Click Go to the store. It will direct you to the Switch out of S mode page in Microsoft Store.
- Select Get and then Install.
You can also directly go to the Switch out of S mode page from the Microsoft Store link.
Unable to Switch Out of S Mode
Here are some methods you can use if you are unable to disable S mode:
- Check and troubleshoot internet connectivity issues.
- Check for server problems at Microsoft. If there are issues, wait for Microsoft to resolve them.
- Log out and Log in back to the Microsoft Store.
- Reset Microsoft Store by entering
wsresetin the Run command.
- Sign in with a new Microsoft account and use it to switch out of S mode.
How Do I Download Windows S Mode?
S mode used to come out as a standalone version of Windows before Windows 10, version 1803. Only after that was it integrated as a feature of OS rolled out on selected OEM devices.
To enable S mode, you need to create an unattend file and apply it to the Windows image before your first boot. You can use the answer or unattend file to change settings in the OS image to set up S mode.
You can find the detailed process on the Microsoft documentation for enabling S mode.
Does S Mode Improve System Performance?
Unlike most third-party software, Microsoft store apps do not add themselves to the startup. Also, store apps do not have options for installing toolbars or other programs that users may unwittingly select.
In normal Windows software, such unnecessary programs will affect system performance. They can change registry entries, invite malware, and increase boot time. You need to clean install Windows regularly to maintain system performance in such a scenario.
However, S mode avoids this issue completely by only allowing store apps. So, for most users, normal Windows’ performance deteriorates over time. But Windows S mode will keep maintaining high performance for a long time.