As a licensed user of Windows Vista, you are entitled to software updates to the operating system periodically released by Microsoft. These include upgrades to Windows Vista features, updates that improve reliability and performance, and updates that provide new security protections against malware and other potentially unwanted software. Microsoft might also provide software updates to improve performance or reliability that are supplied by your computer manufacturer for other software and hardware components on your PC.
Windows Update determines which updates are applicable to your computer and can download and install them automatically if you choose, keeping your computer up-to-date and more secure.
- Easier. In Windows Vista, Windows Update can automatically download and install both High Priority and Recommended updates. Previously, only updates classified as High Priority could be installed automatically, and users had to manually select and download other available updates.
- Less disruptive. Updating occurs in the background, and flexible options are provided for completing the updating process. If an update requires a restart to complete installation, you can schedule this for a specific time when it won’t disrupt your work. You can also postpone a previously scheduled restart until your current work is complete. And when a software update applies to a file in use, Windows Vista can save the application’s data, close the application, update the file, and then restart the application.
To make sure your computer stays up-to-date, Microsoft recommends using the Automatic Updates feature of Windows Update. This ensures that both High Priority and Recommended updates are downloaded and installed in Windows Vista. This preference option is provided during the initial setup of Windows Vista, or you can set it at any subsequent time.
For users interested in taking a more active role in managing the update process, Windows Vista includes a range of preference options. These provide control over how you are notified about the availability of updates, as well the option to review and approve updates before they are downloaded or installed.
At any time, you can also proactively check to see if any updates are available for your PC. The Windows Update control panel allows you to scan for updates, review details about each one, access your updating history, and manage your updating preferences.