Updates, and their installation - general question

  Brian-336451 09:00 23 Jun 03
Locked

I used to install updates religiously (praying they work? NO) because I believed that any update would automatically make things better.

Having done a clean install of XPHome recently, I sadly noticed that the machine defaulted to updates automatically - thats now turned off. Only virus definitions and Norton Internet Security have 'free rein' now.

It is my perception that often our machines actually run worse after some updates - particularly that note in the latest issue of PCA mentioning Q811493's responsibility for a slowdown.

Having re-installed all my software again, I'm now of the opinion that if I have no discernable problems, then I don't update that software. This leaves the OS and software in a state envisaged by the designers rather than the hotch-potch we end up with after the product matures.

This seems particularly accurate regarding NVidia upgrades, I've gone back to the original xp drivers that came with the card and now don't get crashes caused by new drivers (remember I'm talking about my PARTICULAR machine).

Anyone care to discuss their experiences (FE, would this make a good article for the mag - I believe it would)?

  Jester2K II 09:07 23 Jun 03

Personally i install every MS patch that applies to my machine. I still have problems with Q811493 repeatedly trying to install!!! HGowever i always run Goback too so i can easily back out should i find any problems (such as when AVG released an update in October 2002 that caused Resident Sheild to effectively lock the machine up)

Update 400 available. Fixed problems with Resident Shield.
- October 10, 2002 -

Update 399 was withdrawed because of problems with Resident Shield on Windows NT or higher systems. Repaired update will be available soon.
- October 10, 2002 -

A lot of these patches are Security fixes and would be worth your while installing. Just because your houise seems ok doesn't mean the back door isn't wide open!!

I would at least install the Critical updates (maybe ignore Q811493!!!) to get your PC secure.

"FE, would this make a good article for the mag - I believe it would" - me too....

  -pops- 09:24 23 Jun 03

I used to have my Windows updates set to automatic until one of then got its knickers in a twist, wouldn't download and stopped Windows working properly (this was some time ago on W98).

I now never let M$ free in my machines. Yes, I check for updates but many of them I ignore, even the critical ones, because they have no relevance to me or my setup. I certainly don't download just because an update is there, even if it is relevant. I wait until there is some indication on here before I do anything. If there are no adverse comments after a week of it being issued, I might consider downloading, otherwise, like with the 811493 fiasco, I leave well alone. Remember that M$ aren't as clever as they like to think they are and it is all too common for them to issue duff patches - even XPSP1 causes problems for a lot of people.

With driver updates for anything at all, I ignore. As long as my system is working the way I want it to work, that's fine. I don't want to wreck the setup just for the sake of getting an update that all too often turns out to be a disaster, as Not THAT Brian May has experienced. As for this predeliction of many to want to update (flash) their BIOS without a very pressing reason, that is for those with suicidal tendencies only.

I do check updates to A/V, spy traps and firewall as these are constantly evolving and it is necessary to keep them in touch with the latest set of nasties that are always being thrust upon us.

Brian

  -pops- 09:29 23 Jun 03

I should have said that the above is true for my current working machines. New ones I load up with all the updates and patches there are going. It doesn't matter very much with them if it cocks up as they can easily and quickly be re-installed.

I know I can do damage limitation with System Restore and whatever on current machines if something does go wrong but, I'd much rather not have to be put through the hassle and risk of doing this.

Brian

  -pops- 18:56 23 Jun 03

I'm surprised there haven't been more responses to this so I will elevate it to the top.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 19:22 23 Jun 03

Never install any MS or OS updates. Never install programme updates. The only thing that is updated on my computers is AVG. Driver and BIOS updates are only for the truly bewildered....if your machine is running OK leave well enough alone...esp. BIOS updates.

Most updates really only apply to networks (including the dreadful MS *ahem* security fixes *ahem* and I get the impression that some people only d/l them because they are free.

It goes without saying that my computers running XP, 98SE and ME never have any problems, they have not blown up and they are not in control of Mungo the Hacker from planet Zog. ;-)))) Forget the updates....they are not needed and can cause more hassle than they are worth.

It is interesting to note that many W95 computers that I work with, have naff all updates, nor have they had any for yonks....there is never a problem or a mass of hackers at the BIOS doors....think about it.

G

  Brian-336451 20:30 23 Jun 03

Most interesting, so, it seems that I've FINALLY discovered something you guys have known all along.

WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME???? (when your parents get married - send me an invite!!! :))

Seriously, this is why I reckon it'd be a good topic for an article.

Its my personal belief that most of the conflicts are caused by US (inadvertantly) updating software or hardware drivers when the ones we've got on EACH of our machines (if not displaying symptoms) replacing ones that are perfectly adequate.

  Brian-336451 20:33 23 Jun 03

Sorry about the grammar in that last sentence, I think I know what I meant to say - anyway pick the bones out of it and you have my drift.

Metaphores are great aren't they, especially mixed like dolly-mixtures :)

  powerless 20:42 23 Jun 03

Does it apply in this case?

Is windows "broke"?

  Brian-336451 22:52 23 Jun 03

These old adages survive.

I'm rather hoping PCA pick up on this thread to talk generally about the subject.

On this forum are some quite knowledgable people who've discovered (re-) this adage. Perhaps a word in the mag may save lots of people out there tearing their hair out unnecessarily.

  researcher 22:25 24 Jun 03

Just adding I agree this is a great topic for PCA to do some research on.

I usually check the critical updates, most are for networked machines and not too relevant to a single pc.

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