Privacy and Security Turn On or Off Let Apps Access Location in Windows 11


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Location_banner.png

This tutorial will show you how to turn on or off "Let apps access your location" and "Let desktop apps access your location" for your account Windows 11.

Microsoft operates a location service that helps determine the precise geographic location of your Windows device. The precise location of your device allows apps to give you directions, show shops and restaurants that are near you, and more.

Many apps and services request location information from your device, and the Windows location service gives you control over which apps are allowed to access your precise location.

How the location settings work

Location services is a device-wide setting that can be controlled by the device administrator. When turned on, it enables certain Windows features—such as auto-setting the time zone or Find my device—to function properly. When this location setting is enabled, the Microsoft location service will use a combination of global positioning service (GPS), nearby wireless access points, cell towers, and your IP address (or default location) to determine your device’s location. Depending on the capabilities of your device, your device’s location can be determined with varying degrees of accuracy and may in some cases be determined precisely.

If you have turned on Location services, your device sends location information (including wireless access point information, cellular tower information, and precise GPS location if available) to Microsoft after removing any data identifying the person or device before leaving the device. This de-identified copy of location information is used to improve Microsoft location services and, in some instances, shared with our location service provider partners, currently HERE and Skyhook, to improve the location services of the provider.

Additionally, with this setting turned on, each user on the device can allow apps to use their device’s location and location history to deliver location-aware services as precisely as their device supports. If you grant a specific app access to your device’s location on the settings page, that app will have access to precise location information. Otherwise the location information provided to the app has lower accuracy. When your location is used by a location-aware app or Windows service or feature, your location information and recent location history are stored on your device.

If an app or feature accesses the device's location and you are signed in with your Microsoft account, your last-known location information is also saved to the cloud, where it is available across your devices to other apps or services that use your Microsoft account and for which you've granted permission. If you are signed in with your Microsoft account and your device cannot reliably determine your current location on its own (such as when you are in a building or basement), apps or services can use your last-known location from your location history that is stored in the cloud if it is available. Data about a Windows device's recent location history is also stored on the device even if no Microsoft account is in use, and certain apps and Windows features can access this location history.

There are some exceptions to how your device’s location can be determined that are not directly managed by the location settings.

Desktop apps are a specific type of app that won’t ask for separate permission to discover your device location information and won’t appear in the list that allows you to choose apps that can use your location. What are desktop apps? They’re usually downloaded from the internet or installed with some type of media (such as a CD, DVD, or USB storage device). They’re launched using an .EXE or .DLL file, and they typically run on your device, unlike web-based apps (which run in the cloud).

Even when you’ve turned off Location services in Windows, some third-party apps and services could use other technologies (such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, cellular modem, etc.) to determine your device’s location with varying degrees of accuracy. Microsoft requires third-party software developers that develop apps for our Microsoft Store or develop apps using Microsoft tools to respect the Windows location settings unless you’ve provided any legally required consent to have the third-party developer determine your location. However, to further reduce the risk that an app or service can determine your location when the Windows device location setting is off, you should only install apps and services from trusted sources. For more comprehensive protection of your location, you could consider disabling radio-based components of your device such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, cellular modem, and GPS components, which might be used by an app to determine your precise location. However, doing so will also impair other experiences such as calling (including emergency calling), messaging, internet connectivity, and connecting to peripheral devices like your headphones. Please read the privacy policies of the apps and services you’ve installed to learn more about how they use your device’s location.

To facilitate getting help in an emergency, whenever you make an emergency call, Windows will attempt to determine and share your precise location, regardless of your location settings. In addition, your mobile operator will have access to your device’s location if your device has a SIM card or is otherwise using a cellular service.

Reference:

It is required to have location services turned on to turn on Let apps access your location.

For the Allow location override setting to work, the Location services setting for both the local and remote devices needs to be turned on. Additionally, the app being used to manage the remote connection should have been allowed access to use location.



Contents

  • Option One: Turn On or Off "Let apps access your location" in Settings
  • Option Two: Turn On or Off "Let apps access your location" using REG file
  • Option Three: "Choose which apps can access your precise location" in Settings
  • Option Four: Turn On or Off Desktop Apps Access to Location in Settings
  • Option Five: Turn On or Off Desktop Apps Access to Location using REG file


EXAMPLE: Location notification icon on taskbar corner when an app is using your location

Location_notification_icon_on_taskbar_corner.png
Location_notification_icon_on_taskbar_corner-2.png





Option One

Turn On or Off "Let apps access your location" in Settings


1 Open Settings (Win+I).

2 Click/tap on Privacy & security on the left side, and click/tap on Location on the right side. (see screenshot below)


Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-1.png

3 Turn On (default) or Off Let apps access your location for what you want. (see screenshots below)

This will allow (on) or prevent (off) using Option Three, Option Four, and Option Five.


Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-2.png
Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-4.png

4 You can now close Settings if you like.




Option Two

Turn On or Off "Let apps access your location" using REG file


1 Do step 2 (on) or step 3 (off) below for what you want.

2 Turn On "Let apps access your location"

This is the default setting to allow using Option Three, Option Four, and Option Five.


A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below, and go to step 4 below.​

Turn_ON_Let_apps_access_your_location.reg


(Contents of REG file for reference)
Code:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CapabilityAccessManager\ConsentStore\location]
"Value"="Allow"

3 Turn Off "Let apps access your location"

This will disable and prevent using Option Three, Option Four, and Option Five.


A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below, and go to step 4 below.​

Turn_OFF_Let_apps_access_your_location.reg


(Contents of REG file for reference)
Code:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CapabilityAccessManager\ConsentStore\location]
"Value"="Deny"

4 Save the .reg file to your desktop.

5 Double click/tap on the downloaded .reg file to merge it.

6 When prompted, click/tap on Run, Yes (UAC), Yes, and OK to approve the merge.

7 You can now delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.




Option Three

"Choose which apps can access your precise location" in Settings


This option requires Let apps access your location to be turned on in Option One and Option Two.


1 Open Settings (Win+I).

2 Click/tap on Privacy & security on the left side, and click/tap on Location on the right side. (see screenshot below)

Open Location settings

Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-1.png

3 Under Let apps access your location, turn on or off apps you want to Choose which apps can access your precise location. (see screenshot below)

Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-3.png

4 You can now close Settings if you like.




Option Four

Turn On or Off Desktop Apps Access to Location in Settings


1 Open Settings (Win+I).

2 Click/tap on Privacy & security on the left side, and click/tap on Location on the right side. (see screenshot below)


Let_apps_access_your_location_Settings-1.png

3 Turn On or Off (default) Let desktop apps access your location for what you want. (see screenshot below)

Let_desktop_apps_access_your_location.png

4 You can now close Settings if you like.




Option Five

Turn On or Off Desktop Apps Access to Location using REG file


This is the same setting as Option Four.


1 Do step 2 (on) or step 3 (off) below for what you want.


 2. Turn On Desktop Apps Access to Location

This will also turn on the required Let apps access your location setting in Option One and Option Two.


A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below, and go to step 4 below.​

Turn_ON_let_desktop_apps_access_location_for_current_user.reg


(Contents of REG file for reference)
Code:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CapabilityAccessManager\ConsentStore\location]
"Value"="Allow"

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CapabilityAccessManager\ConsentStore\location\NonPackaged]
"Value"="Allow"


 3. Turn Off Desktop Apps Access to Location

This is the default setting.


A) Click/tap on the Download button below to download the file below, and go to step 4 below.​

Turn_OFF_let_desktop_apps_access_location_for_current_user.reg


(Contents of REG file for reference)
Code:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CapabilityAccessManager\ConsentStore\location\NonPackaged]
"Value"="Deny"

4 Save the .reg file to your desktop.

5 Double click/tap on the downloaded .reg file to merge it.

6 When prompted, click/tap on Run, Yes (UAC), Yes, and OK to approve the merge.

7 You can now delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.


That's it,
Shawn Brink


 

Attachments

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Last edited:
I have it on but only for a few things like maps and weather. It helps there.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom built
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 5 5600X
    Motherboard
    MSI B550-A Pro
    Memory
    16 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3200
    Graphics Card(s)
    PowerColor Red Devil Radeon RX 6600XT with 8GB GDDR6
    Sound Card
    Realtek integrated
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    Acer Nitro 24" RG241Y 144hz refresh rate
    Screen Resolution
    1920 X 1080
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    Western Digital Black SN770 1 TB NVMe SSD
    Samsung 860 QVO 1 TB SATA SSD
    Seagate Barracuda 1 TB HDD
    PSU
    LEPA B650 650 watt
    Case
    Enermax Coenus
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper T4 air
    Keyboard
    CM Storm Devastator
    Mouse
    E-Blue Cobra Jr.
    Internet Speed
    100mbs
    Browser
    Microsoft Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender
    Other Info
    Optical Drives: LG DVD-RW and Pioneer BluRay/ DVD burner
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS
    Motherboard
    Asus board (GA402RK)
    Memory
    16 GB Samsung DDR5-4800
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Radeon 680M and discrete Radeon RX 6800S with 8GB GDDR6
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek with Dolby Atmos
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Laptop screen 14" WQXGA, IPS, 120hz refresh rate
    Screen Resolution
    2560 X 1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB PCIe Gen 4 SSD (WD Black SN850)
    PSU
    Battery power and Asus power brick/adapter. Also has USB-C charging
    Case
    Laptop
    Cooling
    Laptop fans in vapor chamber
    Mouse
    Touchpad and Omoton bluetooth mouse
    Keyboard
    Built in RGB backlit
    Internet Speed
    100mbps
    Browser
    Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender
Does it also work in Windows 10? Thanks
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10/11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 5 2600 Six
    Motherboard
    GIGABYTE B450 GAMING X / Seasonic Focus GX 550 Gold
    Memory
    32 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Acer EK240YAbi - LED monitor 23,8"
    Hard Drives
    SSD 250GB / WDC 1000GB
If you do this don't expect the weather app to work., or the map app.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Pro 22631.3155
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Digital Storm Velox
    CPU
    Intel Core i9-10940X
    Motherboard
    MSI X299 PRO (Intel X299 Chipset) (Up to 4x PCI-E Devices)
    Memory
    128 GB DDR4 3200 MHz Corsair Vengance LPX
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Black
    Sound Card
    Integrated Motherboard Audio-Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    CORSAIR XENEON 32QHD
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    2 Samsung 980 Pro NVME 2TB
    1x Storage (6TB Western Digital
    PSU
    Corsair / EVGA / Thermaltake (Modular) (80 Plus Gold)
    Case
    VELOX
    Cooling
    H20: Stage 2: Digital Storm Vortex Liquid CPU Cooler (Dual Fan) (Fully Sealed + No Maintenance)
    Keyboard
    Corsair K63 Wireless
    Mouse
    Corsair M65 Pro
    Internet Speed
    1000Gb's Down-20 Up
    Browser
    Firefox 123.0
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Cyber power CP1350AVRLCD -UPS
    NVIDIA 551.52 Driver
  • Operating System
    Arch Linux
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    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Intel NUC13ANHi3
    CPU
    Intel Core i3 1315u
    Motherboard
    NUC13AN
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    64GB GSKILL DDR4 3200
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    Intel On Board
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    Intel on Board
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    Dell 2419HGCF
    Screen Resolution
    1920 X 1080
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    1TB Crucial M2NVME
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    External 90 Watt
    Case
    NUC Tall
    Cooling
    Fan
    Mouse
    Razer
    Keyboard
    Logitech
    Internet Speed
    1GB
    Browser
    Slimjet 43.0.1.0
    Other Info
    quiet & fast
Great post thanks! Trying to clarify the solutions here. Which reg script enables "Let apps access your location" AND "Let desktop apps access your location"...at the logged in user level?

1697639660965.png
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
Great post thanks! Trying to clarify the solutions here. Which reg script enables "Let apps access your location" AND "Let desktop apps access your location"...at the logged in user level?

Hello, and welcome. :alien:

"Let apps access your location" will turn off all apps included desktop apps from allowing location access.

"Let desktop apps access your location" is a sub setting to turn on/off only all desktop apps (doesn't include Microsoft Store apps) from allowing location access.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    64 GB (4x16GB) G.SKILL TridentZ RGB DDR4 3600 MHz (F4-3600C18D-32GTZR)
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING (11GB GDDR5X)
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    4TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S23 Plus phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1 14-eu0098nr (2024)
    CPU
    Intel Core Ultra 7 155H 4.8 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR5x-7467 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Intel Arc
    Sound Card
    Poly Studio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    14" 2.8K OLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    2880 x 1800
    Hard Drives
    2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Internet Speed
    Intel Wi-Fi 7 BE200 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.4
    Browser
    Chrome and Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
Hello, and welcome. :alien:

"Let apps access your location" will turn off all apps included desktop apps from allowing location access.

"Let desktop apps access your location" is a sub setting to turn on/off only all desktop apps (doesn't include Microsoft Store apps) from allowing location access.
So Option #5 will do both...gotcha. Thanks again!
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    64 GB (4x16GB) G.SKILL TridentZ RGB DDR4 3600 MHz (F4-3600C18D-32GTZR)
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING (11GB GDDR5X)
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    4TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S23 Plus phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1 14-eu0098nr (2024)
    CPU
    Intel Core Ultra 7 155H 4.8 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR5x-7467 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Intel Arc
    Sound Card
    Poly Studio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    14" 2.8K OLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    2880 x 1800
    Hard Drives
    2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Internet Speed
    Intel Wi-Fi 7 BE200 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.4
    Browser
    Chrome and Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium

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