Install and Configure Microsoft Update Properly in Windows 7 (With Video)

Discussion in 'Blogs' started by Mike, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    Hello again, this is Mike from Windows7Forums.com. Thanks for reviewing this video. In this demonstration we discuss the methods used to update your computer through Microsoft Windows Update. Windows Update is an excellent tool and over the years that tool has been neglected in both businesses and homes.

    Many computers fall prey to spyware, malware, trojans, and viruses, and have the control of their computer overtaken by malicious online predators. By keeping your computer up to date, and by installing Microsoft Update, and not just Windows Update, on a Windows 7 PC, you can take a pro-active approach to keeping your computer secure.

    In this demonstration I'll show you how to configure and use Windows Update from the Windows control panel. I'll also show you how to upgrade Windows Update to Microsoft Windows Update. These two products are significantly different, and the one that comes with Microsoft Windows out of the box is not as thorough as Microsoft Windows Update. This process is normally performed when Microsoft Windows is set up, and when the right choices are made. But many times, people do not choose to get additional updates from Microsoft Update.

    These updates include updates to Microsoft Office and many other updates for Microsoft products. Here's how we can go through the upgrade process to help you protect your computer.

    We begin the demonstration with a freshly loaded copy of Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit, which now has proper drivers installed. This copy of Windows 7 is running in a virtual machine for demonstration purposes. But the results would be similar whether you had performed a Windows 7 upgrade or done a clean install either way.

    Let's get started on keeping your system up to date and secure. Anti-virus be damned, it doesn't matter if your computer has no Windows Updates.

    Access the control panel by accessing the Start Menu, and going to Control Panel. From there, you need to scroll down, using the list (icon) view, and finding Windows Update.

    Once you've accessed Windows Update, it's important that you check for updates. Most likely, your operating system has already done this, and you're going to see plenty of security updates right in front of you. Many of them are critical security updates. Some of them are reliability updates, which improve Windows 7 itself, while others are security updates that you absolutely need to protect your computer from harm. Some of them [updates], will actually help with software compatibility and other problems you may experience by using Windows 7.

    To put it bluntly, Windows 7 64-bit has a lot less security updates than Windows 7 32-bit has, but if you have the Ultimate edition, you pretty much have every language pack possible, which most people don't even use, and quite frankly we don't need to worry about at this point.

    You also have Windows Defender updates, which are used to scan your computer for spyware, and should be installed on a regular basis.

    So here we go, we are going to say okay, and install these updates right off the bat. We accept the license agreement, we finish, and we now start the process of downloading these updates. Already you see we have quite a few.
    And what's important to recognize with Windows Update is that it doesn't matter what kind of spyware protection you have on your computer: whether its the best in the world, or whether its simply nothing at all, as we have in this case with this computer: If you don't upgrade your computer regularly with Windows Updates, you are going to wind up having problems. And this was primarily the case with Windows XP users.

    Now if you look here, you see that you are only getting updates for "Windows only". You are not getting all of the Windows updates that you can possibly get. And what, really, you can do now, as they've made it a lot easier for you, is that you can just go and get updates for other Microsoft products by clicking on "Find out more", and we'll deal with that right after the updates done downloading and installing.

    The difference between Windows Update and Microsoft Update is substantial in the fact that not only will you get critical security updates, but you will also get recommended security updates. And these security updates can effect many parts of your system, especially on a fully loaded system. When you're talking about having Microsoft Office installed on your system; copies of different Microsoft software on your system, it then becomes critical that you have Microsoft Update installed on your computer.

    Many people don't even take the time to perform this level of updating that we're doing right now, and that's pretty much because the scheduled time for installation for Windows update, by default, is three o'clock in the morning. Some people turn their computers at night. I'm willing to wager that most people, in fact, do turn off their computer at night.

    I'll show you in a little bit, how you can actually change that, to a reasonable time, where the updates will install automatically on their own, while the computer is probably on.

    So as see here we're still downloading quite a few updates, as I imagine many computers out there do have. I've seen many computers without having been updating at all. So this guide is really meant to help you secure your computer in the best means possible, and that is directly through Microsoft.

    Now that we have installed Windows updates successfully, I will show you how to activate Microsoft Update. To activate Microsoft Update, simply go to "Find out more". After clicking on "Find out more", you will be taken to a Microsoft website. You will want to agree to the terms of the license agreement, and simply click on install. Say yes to the User Access Control prompt. Your computer will now check for updates again.

    Now, we have already installed updates, but for the sake of this demonstration, I will show you that there are additional updates available to you. You have updates for Microsoft Silverlight, and the opportunity to install Microsoft Live Essentials. These two products are optional installations.

    However, if you have Microsoft Office installed, you will receive updates for Microsoft Office as well, many of which are critical security updates and many of which are optimizations to those pieces of software.

    Let's now take a look at a way to change your settings, to optimize how you update your computer, and when you update your computer. We just clicked on change settings, under Windows Update, in Control Panel. We have set the system to automatically update. This is the recommended option. However, as you see, new updates are installed every day at three o'clock in the morning. If you feel that your computer will not be online at three o'clock in the morning, you can change it to any time you want. Preferably, you could change it to sometime after you get home from work: 7 PM would be an obvious choice; even 9 AM might be a good choice, or 8 AM. It's completely, entirely up to you. But leaving it at 3 AM may be the worst option possible, especially if you turn off your computer at night.

    It's recommended that you do change this setting, and that you allow all of these options to proceed. You can then continue to install updates. You will have a much safer, and much more secure system.

    Thank you again for viewing this presentation. It has been brought to you by Windows7Forums.com, and we look forward to seeing you on our website, where we can supply you with many more recommendations and helpful tips if you require them.
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    Important Highlights
    • Be certain to activate Microsoft Update, and not just configure Windows Update. You may not even be aware that you are using other Microsoft products and critical updates for those products may be available. (Examples: SQL Server, Microsoft Office, etc.)
    • Set your installation time to a time that is reasonable, and when you know the computer will actually be on. If you are on a laptop, be sure to check for updates regularly, via the Control Panel.
    • Do not count on your computer to run itself: It does require maintenance, and empowering yourself with that knowledge could save you some headaches and a few hundred dollar visits to a "geek squad", where they can play with your computer for two weeks.
     

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