Texas Tech University.
TTU Home Safe Computing Practices
logo small

Automatically Install Critical Updates in Microsoft Windows

NOTE:  In order to perform these steps, you must have Administrator privileges on your Microsoft Windows computer. 

This process will run in all user profiles, regardless of permission level, once these steps have been completed by the system administrator.

Step 1.  While pressing down the windows key , click the R key to make the Run window appear.

Note:  If your keyboard doesn't have a windows key , you can click on Start -> Run instead.

The Run window allows you to type in commands to be executed by Windows. 

Step 2.  In the Run window, type control (as shown above) and then click the OK button.  This will open the Control Panel window (below) which contains the icon to be used.

Step 3.  Note that in Windows XP, it is possible that your Control Panel windows resembles the above image .  If this is the case, click Switch to Classic View in the upper left corner of the window to return the Control Panel window to the classic view.  Otherwise, proceed to the next step.

NOTE:  Windows 2000 computers already use Classic View so for these computers, this step is not necessary and you can proceed to the next step. 

Step 4.  In Windows XP, double-click on the System icon in the Control Panel window.  Click on the Automatic Updates tab in the resulting System Properties window.

In Windows 2000, an icon named Automatic Updates is visible in the Control Panel.  Double-click on the Automatic Updates icon, then continue to Step 5 below.

Step 5.  In the System Properties (or Automatic Updates for Win 2000) window (shown above) proceed with the following steps:

A. Check the box next 'Keep my computer up to date'.
B. Select the Option to "Automatically download the updates...", and install them...'
C. Select Every Day, and a convenient time during the day when your computer is running.
D. Click the 'OK' button to close the System Properties window..

Step 6.  Close all windows opened during this procedure to finish.  Windows will now automatically download and install critical updates on your computer whenever the updates are available.  After the updates have been installed, you may be prompted to save your work and reboot your computer.

Step 7.  On a regular basis, you should follow the below manual update procedure:

         A. Go to http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com
         B. Scan for updates
         C. Apply ALL Critical Security Updates and Service Packs

If the Windows Update site is unavailable, Windows 2000 SP4 and Windows XP SP2 can both be downloaded from the Microsoft website.

Windows XP - Service Pack 2
Windows 2000 - Service Pack 4