Operating System Updates – Windows

I thought I’d do a quick post on updating your operating system, Windows only I’m afraid, I’ll be posting a Mac and Linux one in the next few days.

Whether you’ve got a desktop, laptop or netbook – this guide will apply for all.

Windows Update – To keep things running smooth on your computer it’s important to try and keep your software up to date. Now first of all, before undertaking any updates on your system you should perform a backup of your computer, so that should the unthinkable happen and something go wrong you have all your data saved. (For more information on backups, check out my blog for an earlier article)

Once you have your backup we can begin updating your system, now depending on what operating system you’re running it can differ slightly. For example, users running Windows XP (Or earlier) will need to open up Internet Explorer, go to the “Tools” menu, and select “Windows Update” – if however, you don’t see “Tools” anywhere, don’t worry, it’s under the “Safety” menu as well. Now even if you don’t have either of those in view, you can of course go direct to the website by typing in this address into your address bar: windowsupdate.microsoft.com – this will take you straight to the site. Now for all you people running Vista or 7, it’s a lot easier, go to your program list, by clicking on the start icon, then select “Programs” and find “Windows Update” in the list.

Once the site/program has loaded on your screen, you’ll be confronted with some options, in XP it’s easiest to choose the “Express” method of updating as this automatically selects the important updates and security updates that your system is missing, in Vista and 7 it’s slightly different, you’re directly given the choice of installing just the recommended updates, or whether you’d like to add some optional updates – to play it safe you can simply apply the important ones.

Typically important updates will require a restart of your machine, but don’t worry – once the updates have installed the system will let you know with a handy reminder, so when it’s convenient – simply restart your machine and enjoy!

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