Windows Updates are a GOOD thing…don’t be afraid…

As I’m sure you all have noticed at one time or another, your computer tells you “Updates are ready for your computer…” and you see this little yellow shield in the bottom right hand corner of your screen.

 yellowshield2
 
Most people have a few questions when they see this.  “Why do I need an update when there is nothing broke?”, “Is something going to break if I update my computer?”, “How does my computer know I need an update anyways?”, and “What do I need to do?”

        •   “Why do I need an update when there is nothing broke?” Every month Microsoft pushes out security updates to patch holes that are found in their software.  Hopefully these holes have been discovered by Microsoft programmers, but there are times when holes are found by attackers wanting to do harm to your computer or steal personal data.  So, Microsoft pushes out an update to let us know that first, there is a vulnerability and second, that here is the fix for that vulnerability. 

        •   “Is something going to break if I update my computer?” Most likely….not. :)   However, there have been times where Microsoft updates are not installed correctly and things break.  There have also been times where Microsoft updates cause a conflict with another manufacturers program, such as some accounting software’s like QuickBooks.  At Davenport, by the time the update gets to your computer, it has passed two levels of testing, so we are very confident that the update will not break your workstation.  If for some reason an update has an issue installing after it has been pushed out to your workstation, we have the ability to recall an update. Within 24 to 48 hours, the update will not be trying to install any longer on your computer. 

        •   “How does my computer know I need an update anyways?”  At Davenport, we utilize Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) to monitor the security updates on about 3000 computers.  Managing security updates with WSUS allows Davenport to maintain these computers very efficiently. 

        •   “What do I need to do?”  Here’s the best part…nothing, if you don’t want to.  The updates will automatically install on all the Academic computers if they are turned on.  Admin and Faculty computers will download the updates but not install them right away.  They will eventually install if your computer is left on overnight, so when you come in the next day, your computer may tell you that you may need to restart.  This is a clear indication that the updates were installed.  Most updates require a reboot after they are installed so be aware of that if you manually choose to install them.  Clicking on the yellow shield, this will pop up and allow you to manually install the updates.

 installupdate

If you manually choose to install the updates just to get it out of the way you will still be able to work and then reboot your computer afterwards.

 installing 
 
So, you may now ask “What about my computer at home?”  The answer is, Yes, it is very important to install updates at home, however, we will save that for another blog article.

Thanks,
John

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