Windows Automatic Updates

Available To: Faculty, Staff

President Haeger and his cabinet have tasked Information Technology Services with implementing a new security policy that will apply critical and security updates to all computers logging on to the NAU domain.
Effective Wednesday, September 3, 2003, updates that apply to your workstation will be downloaded to your computer.

Effective Tuesday, August 9, 2005 Windows product updates that apply to your workstation will also be downloaded to your computer.

When the download is complete, you will be prompted by the Automatic Updates service to install the updates. You may install the updates at that moment or allow the Automatic Updates service to perform a scheduled installation at 3:00am. If you shutdown your computer after the updates have been downloaded, but you didn't choose to install the updates, you will be prompted to let your computer install the updates and shut down itself when the install is finished.

Automatic Updates can be used on Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2003 family, and Windows Server 2008 family.

If a Service Pack is needed on your machine, it will be installed upon computer startup. You will notice a message box stating “Installing Windows ?? Service Pack xx.” Do not reset your computer while this message box is displayed. The installation may take up to 20 minutes. Historically, Service Packs are released no more than twice a year.

Support Information

Installation Behavior:

Automatic Updates can occur under different conditions. The most common scenarios are outlined below.

Available Updates During the Day:
You may notice a "balloon" popup in your lower right hand corner of your taskbar indicating new updates are available to install. If you click on the "balloon", a dialog box will be displayed asking you to install the updates now. You have the option of clicking on the "X" in the right hand corner to dismiss the message and wait for the scheduled installation to occur at 3:00am.

When No User is Logged On and Computer is On:
If no user is logged on at 3:00 am, Automatic Updates will automatically install and reboot the machine if required.

When Someone is Logged On (workstation could be locked) at 3:00am:
Automatic Updates will not restart a computer automatically during a scheduled installation if a user is logged in to the computer. Instead, Automatic Updates will prompt the user to restart the computer to complete the installation when the user returns to their workstation. To keep your system current on updates, the computer must be restarted in order for Automatic Updates to detect any additional updates that might be applicable to the computer.

When the Computer is turned Off:
If the computer is powered off at 3:00am, when it is powered back on, Automatic Updates will wait 1 minute after the logon prompt is displayed before proceeding with a scheduled installation. A reboot will occur if the user does not login. If the user does login, they will be notified to install the updates and to restart the computer to complete the installation. To keep your system current on updates, the computer must be restarted in order for Automatic Updates to detect any additional updates that might be applicable to the computer.

Related Services

Available to studentsAvailable to facultyAvailable to staff

ITS will automatically apply critical and security updates to software.
Available to studentsAvailable to facultyAvailable to staff

ITS offers software support for Students, Faculty and Staff to allow the campus community to achieve academic and administrative goals and functions.

Training & Documentation


Frequently Ask Questions about Windows Automatic Updates