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Windows 7: Reboots after Updates - really needed?


05 Oct 2012   #1

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 
Reboots after Updates - really needed?

I was a very happy user of Win 2k. I guess I had to reboot it no more than 2 or 3 times each year.

Now, in 7, every single time an Update (Windows Update) is performed, system asks to be rebooted. Hiding its requests or keep postponing every 4 hours is tedious.

But today I am really "angry" because of today's updates: I recently switched to MSE (Security Essentials), and the installed update was ONLY a MSE update. In general, it's just an antivirus! Why 7 wants to be rebooted even for something like that?

It really seems that, besides any logic, 7 simply asks for reboot every time. No matter if needed or not. And for me that IS a problem.
I am a developer, and it happens so often I have hundred files opened. It happens i need to remind myself what I changed 5 days ago into a specific sourcefile.
Rebooting means losing the entire undo history, temp files I simply use as reference, and a number of other things I don't need to bother you with.

The only "solution" I can apply now is to simply ignore updates till I'm ready to lose everything, but sometimes this may mean MONTHS. So not really a perfect-world one, I'd say.

I think 7 is a great OS, but this rebooting things is really pissing me off.
I know there's no solution because it isn't properly a technical issue, but I'd really like to understand if there's a single valid reason for this absurd behavior.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

06 Oct 2012   #2

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

You can go into services.msc (Search for that in the start menu), find the Windows Update Service, double-click on it, then click Stop then Disable the service. Click OK then from that point onwards, Windows Update will no longer prompt you to restart your computer. If you want, you can disable the Security Center service as well. I disabled both security center and windows update on my computer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #3

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

HH2012,

Thanks for the reply, but I already knew about that (it's what I meant with "Hiding its requests").
My post is really about this Windows 7 policy: when security updates are released, I would be more than glad of installing them. And I can understand reboot requests when updates are changing something at kernel level. But I cannot about anything else.

Since Windows 7 is out, I saw threads (both here and around the internet) of many peoples complaining about this. And I saw Microsoft promised not to do the same on Win8. But why can't they release an update that will fix this even on 7?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


06 Oct 2012   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)
 
 

The whole rationale behind Win8 is to compartmentalise the system in such a way as to allow 99% of updates to succeed without a reboot - and it has required a massive change in the way the OS works (although not as great as the chenge from XP to Vista).
Windows 7 requires far less reboots than XP did - the problem has been that because of the much harsher external environment, there are many more patches being installed, so it actually looks worse than it is. If you look at a minimal Server install, reboots are relatively uncommon - it's the ancillaries involved in things like browsers (and not just IE) that tend to require reboots as well, which bring the numbers up. It remains to be seen how effective the strategy in Win8 will be once real-world things intervene.

I've noticed that many times people complaining about reboots have been working while doing updates - if you want to avoid reboots, the best thing is to have nothing but the OS running at the time (which is typically impractical, I know), since it can be those running apps which prevent the replacement of files in the system.

Almost all of the time, it's possible to delay a reboot for a convenient time - if that's not the case, then you shouldn't be running with Updates set to automatic, anyhow. Win 7 does occasionally force a reboot, which is something IMHO, it should never do, but if you don't take appropriate action on the warnings on-screen then you may as well give up anyhow. I know of no normal user systems that can't be scheduled for maintenance shutdowns at least once a week if the shutdowns are of only 10 minutes or so duration, which is typically all that is required for Windows 7. Some mission-critical systems will have periods where it's not practical for various reasons - but they are the exception rather than the rule, and proper system management mitigates the requirements there anhyhow.

Attempting to 'fix this' in Win 7 would be a waste of resources better applied to making Win9 a decent system for the PC user, rather than being optimised for the tablet user, IMNHO.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #5

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

I understand what you're saying, but I have to disagree.
I've already disabled any automatic update: I am alerted when updates are available, and I install them whenever I want. I removed ever possibility for the OS to reboot automatically, so that's not a problem.
In general, when new available updates are notified, I first look at what they are. If big ones, I simply do not perform the update because an update there would be expected.

Windows Update is not helping at all there, as it always says that computer MAY NEED rebooting after the update. Why WU can't expilicitly say which updates requires reboots and which do not will always be a mystery, for me.

But this time I felt to write something about this because of the kind of update: it was only a MSE update! I mean, it was a virus database definition update, nothing more. And I'm positive something like that would had simply needed a service restart of MSE itself, not a full system reboot.

I don't know about XP, as I switched directly from 2k to 7. But in these years, I cannot really remember a single update that hadn't asked for a reboot. Not a single one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)
 
 

The latest MSE update is a major change to the engine - I know of no AV that doesn't require a reboot after that sort of process.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #7

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

I used to have AVG (had it for years), and I can't remember a single time a reboot was requested because of it.
AV tools are integrated, but still services. They can be restarted, and doesn't need the full OS to restart for this.
However that was a specific case, if you want. But am I really so unlucky that I've never been able to apply an Update without reboot requests?

I understand I may not be a average user, but the fact is that those reboots are always required, whichever is the reason. Tricks to avoid notifications are just workarounds.
At least 2K used to tell me if a specific update would had needed rebooting.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)
 
 

One of the reasons I stopped using AVG was bloat - it was getting as bad a Norton (almost). At one time I sold AVG, but felt the value-for-money was going downhill rapidly three or four years ago. It rebooted on upgrades.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2012   #9

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

I gave up on AVG for the same reasons. But its updates just required service restart, no reboots
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Oct 2012   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by HH2012 View Post
I disabled both security center and windows update on my computer.
Worst advice I have ever seen here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Reboots after Updates - really needed?




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