The Importance of Microsoft Updates

More than once I have had a customer call me with computer issues, one of the problems being they were not running their Microsoft updates and some unique challenges arose. It is important to run updates as they come out. Updates are published for a number of reasons and include required patches or updates to solve security problems in the software.  Some are optional, while others are critical updates.

If you don’t complete the required updates you are leaving your computer open to hackers. Take note that recent versions of windows (i.e. Windows 2000, ME, and XP) do have an Automatic Update feature. If you turn this feature on, the PC will check for, download and install critical updates at the scheduled time you set.  This eliminates the need for you to periodically check for updates yourself.


What types of Microsoft Updates are there?

  • Security Updates – Security update classifications include critical, important, moderate, low, or non-rated. Critical Security Updates will leave your computer or server extremely vulnerable to hackers and malicious code if they are ignored.


  • Critical Updates – The purpose of this update is to fix major Microsoft product issues that could cause software errors and other unexpected behavior. They pair with Security Updates and form the “High Priority” category of updates from Microsoft. Critical updates should be set to download and install automatically or be done manually if you prefer to initiate yourself.


  • Software Updates – This handles non-critical update issues such as added extended features and minor bugs.


  • Service Packs – Service Packs combine groups of patches to a specific date for a specific software or operating system. They also usually have additional feature changes (i.e. Windows XP Service Pack 3).

Tim Grier
Computer Magician
CET Computer Magic


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