> In article <uBfk0l9lHHA.3264@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl>, tim says...
>> I have been told in the past that it is not always the best idea to download
>> windows updates (XP) just because they are available,as it can cause
>> problems.Is that the case with Vista as well? Or are the updates actually
>> fixing bugs etc and would definitely solve some problems?
> Depends whether you like leaving your PC wide open to exploits.
I'd have to say that the same general precautions apply.
I really don't like to see people use the Automatic Updates, unless
they take precautions to ensure that no patches get installed without
the user's express permission, given only after he/she has researched
each individual patch to ensure that it applies and is necessary. Due
to the nearly infinite number of possible combinations of hardware,
device drivers, and applications on any given PC, it's impossible to
guarantee that all patches will be 100% harmless. In a very small
number of cases, patches and hotfixes can cause conflicts or other
problems. So, as with all changes to an OS, caution is advised.
In the overwhelming majority of cases, all "Critical" updates
should be installed. These address serious issues that can affect a
large number of computers. There will be only rare occasions when a
Critical update will not apply. Of special importance are those that
address security vulnerabilities. If people had installed the available
critical updates to WinXP in July of 2003, the Blaster and Welchia worms
would not have spread throughout the Internet the following month. In
the unlikely event that problems do develop, you can always use the
Control Panel's Add/Remove Programs applet or a System Restore Point to
uninstall the troublesome hotfix.
For the "Recommended" updates, simply study the information
provided to see if these updates apply in your specific situation. If
they don't apply, or you're not experiencing the problem(s) addressed,
you needn't install them. For instance, I had no use for WinXP's
MovieMaker, so I ignored any updates to it. Again, in the unlikely
event that problems do develop, you can always use the Control Panel's
Add/Remove Programs applet or a System Restore Point to uninstall the
In general, though, I've found it best *not* to download the
"Driver" updates from Windows Update, unless they're for a hardware
device originally manufactured by Microsoft. Device drivers provided
by each component's manufacturer's web site are likely to perform
better and offer more features than will the watered-down, "generic"
drivers that those manufacturers provide to Microsoft for distribution
via Windows Update.
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