WaaSMedicAgent is responsible for fixing Windows Update when it breaks. Unfortunately, the Medic Agent itself can cause problems due to high RAM, high CPU and high disk usage. Fortunately, the WaaS MedicAgent can be disabled completely.
What is WaaSMedicAgent.exe?
No software is perfect — things go wrong and files break, including Windows Updates (mainly Windows updates). Windows as a Service Medic Agent (WaaSMedicAgent) was introduced in Windows 10 to “enable recovery and protection of Windows Update components”. In other words, it fixes Windows Update issues that can prevent your PC from updating.
This process is supposed to run when Windows encounters a problem with an update. Unfortunately, the Medic Agent itself is known to cause problems. In some cases, it crashes PCs for hours by maximizing CPUs, causing extremely high RAM usage and high disk usage.
Is it malware?
WaaSMedicAgent.exe is a legitimate part of Windows 10 and Windows 11. It has occasionally caused issues similar to malicious behavior, but it is not malware. It is, of course, relatively common for malware authors to attempt to disguise malware as legitimate applications and services. You can run a scan with Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes’ Antivirus to rule out the possibility.
While it can be annoying, you should seriously consider preventing the executable from running and disabling the service. Windows Update will still work even if Medic Agent is disabled, but it may not recover from an error if it occurs during an update.
That said, if you want to disable WaaSMedicAgent, here are a few ways you can do it.
Slow down your updates
WaaSMedicAgent should only be activated if Windows Update encounters a problem. Pausing Windows 10 or Windows 11 updates can temporarily prevent WaaSMedicAgent from using excessive amounts of RAM, maximizing your disk usage, using your CPU, and otherwise freezing your PC. However, it will not solve your problems permanently.
If you want to keep your system running for a while, pausing updates is a good option. Don’t forget to run it later so it can try to fix the error that occurred.
Disable WaaSMedicAgent with RegEdit
WaaSMedicAgent is the Windows service associated with WaaSMedicAgent.exe – if you want to prevent the executable from running, you must also disable the service. Windows does not allow you to disable the service from within the Services app, but you can disable it using the Registry Editor (RegEdit). As always, be careful editing the Windows registry. Accidentally deleting a key — or even changing a value — can cause serious problems for computers and major headaches for people.
RELATED: Learn to use the Registry Editor like a pro
First you need to launch RegEdit. Click the Start button, type ‘regedit’ in the search bar, then press Enter or click ‘Open’.
Navigate to the following path in the Registry Editor window or copy and paste the following line into the address bar and press Enter:
WaaSMedicService is the name of the registry key. You’ll see it in the left pane. Registry keys are a bit like folders. They can contain subkeys, which resemble subdirectories, and properties that resemble files.
Each registry key in “Services” has a property called “Start” that determines when and why the service is launched.
Start can take a few different values:
- 2 is “Automatic”
- 3 is “Manual”
- 4 is “Disabled”
Double click the “Start” property in the right pane and change the value to 4 and then click “Ok”.
Tip: If you’ve used the Services app before, you may have noticed that some services are automatic, but specifically designed to start “delayed”. The property that “Delayed” sets is called “DelayedAutoStart”. A value of 1 allows a delayed automatic start, while 0 disables a delayed automatic start.
Disable the use of our registry keys
If you don’t want to mess with the registry yourself, two registry keys are included with this article. One is called “Disable_WaaSMedicSvc.reg” and will completely disable WaasMedicSvc (and WaaSMedicAgent.exe). The other REG file is called “ReEnabled_WaaSMedicSvc.reg” and resets the service to its default value.
Just download the zip file, extract the contents anywhere and double click on “Disable_WaaSMedicSvc.reg”. You will receive a warning about the dangers of applying registry keys – click “Yes”.
Note that other components of Windows Update will likely re-enable the Medic Service in the future. If you did not resolve the issue with Windows Update, the service may suddenly be set to manual and WaaSMedicAgent.exe may run unexpectedly. You can always just kick the can down the road and turn the service off again, but you shouldn’t. If you have time, run the Medic Agent or try repairing Windows Update manually.
The registry key we’ve provided may come in handy if you need to repeatedly disable WaaSMedicSvc, as all you need to do is double-click it to reset the service to “Disabled”.