Windows Update Ruins Lives

Windows Update Ruins Lives

Windows Update is frustrating as shit at the best of times. Windows 10 updates are even worse. Windows 10’s big-ass Anniversary Update? That takes the cake.

Over the weekend, it took out Antony Green in the middle of the ABC’s coverage of the ACT state election. We’ve had exactly the same thing happen in our office — again and again — over the last couple of weeks, knocking laptops and desktops alike out for as long as an hour while the Anniversary Update worked its devilry behind the scenes, so we can sympathise.

The problem with Update in Windows 10 is that it’s pushy. It gets in the way. We understand that it has to be slightly aggressive or most people just wouldn’t update, but c’mon, guys. There needs to be some “stop this update from happening just this one time, I promise” button that you can click to banish updates for at least a couple of hours or to let you restart your PC without losing all functionality for what could be half an hour or more. It just feels like punishment.

Here’s a few other great moments in Windows Update that we’ve found literally in the last two hours:

Go on, tell us some of your horror stories. We know you have them. This is a safe space.

This article originally appeared on Gizmodo Australia


  • I’ve had lots, but the best was a client who had traveled to China, left it running overnight because it was doing the update, got up in the morning and found it had finished but also somehow uninstalled ALL of his software. There were 3 entries in Programs and Features – all microsoft runtimes – and no restore points to go back to.


  • rolled out 200 sp4s at the new year. and 200 macbooks. guess which ones i prefer. guess which ones work without any hassles.

  • I’ve not seen so many bricked systems since Windows ME. ME made Vista look good.

    Microsoft are trying to respond quickly to updates. However, this is leading to increased instability.

  • I was working as a contract developer on site with a client. I charge by the day and came in one day to find a unstoppable update on the only machine provisioned for my use. Together with a slow network and a slow computer, I was helpless for 4 hours. I charged them half a day to watch a progress bar.

  • Maybe these people should have paid for either Pro or Enterprise editions so they could defer upgrades.

  • Why don’t they just let you choose when to install it? It’s not that hard. MacOS system updates give you a choice of when you’d like to do it.

    • Yep, this. ^^^^^

      Stop complaining everyone. 10 seconds of Googling will give you the answer you seek. If it’s really annoying you that much there are two ways to disable updates:

      Method 1

      1. Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services
      2. Double click Windows Update
      3. Under Startup Type, select Disabled. Click OK.

      Method 2 (only works on wifi, this is not available on physical, cabled connections without editing your registry)

      1. Settings -> Network and Internet -> Wi-fi -> Manage Known Networks
      2. Find your wifi network -> Properties -> Set as metered connection. Click OK.

      Just keep in mind that disabling updates with either method will, funnily enough, disable updates. You’ll need to re-enable them every now and then to install updates when it’s convenient for you, then disable them again.

      Googling is hard guys.

  • I’ve done a full release level upgrade on my Mint machine while still using it with no functionality loss. Reboot at the end when it suited me.
    Windows is fundamentally broken by design if it cannot do this stuff smoothly.

    • Honestly most of the time, it is pretty seemless and smooth. For me, the only issues come up when, after the update (like the anniversary update), that the UI has changed and I need to figure out where things have moved to.

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