Run "Software Update" in Windows 8?
I've switched. Now how do I keep Microsoft Windows 8 fully up-to-date with all software patches, updates, etc? There's no Start menu, so there's no "Windows Update" option?
It's interesting how finding the windows update feature has become more difficult as Windows has evolved. Used to be it was an option on the Start menu, then it became an option in Internet Explorer, then people stopped using IE, and now in Windows 8 it's so subtle that you need to use your secret decoder ring to figure things out!
Fortunately, this site is a secret decoder ring. Boyah!
If you were a Windows 7 power user, you already know that Windows Update became a Control Panel, accessible off the Start menu by choosing "Control Panels" and finding it. Then a simple click on "Install Updates" would do all the work if there were any updates required. Easy.
In Windows 8, turns out that things are surprisingly similar. The trick is that you have to find the Control Panels area, so let's do that first.
Move your cursor to any of the four corners so that the icon strip appears. The lowest is the gear or settings button:
Click on it and a number of options appear, notably our friend "Control panel":
Click on "Control panel" on this Windows 8 view and you'll find that the actual Control Panels area is pretty darn similar to Windows 7:
What we want to tweak is under "System and Security", so click on that on the top left of this Window. And now another window that sure looks similar to the Win7 system security configuration area:
At this point you can "Turn automatic updating on or off" but instead let's "Check for updates". Click on that link and if you haven't done anything since your initial install to enable this feature, you'll get the big red warning that you've never updated:
Yikes! Definitely need to fix this. Easy solution is to simply click on the "Turn on automatic updates" button, at which point Windows 8 instantly starts looking for available updates for your system:
After a period of time that's defined by both your network speed and how busy the Microsoft servers are when you're running the scan, the system will ascertain how many updates are available and show them, also assuring you that automatic updates are now ready to go:
At this point, however, the updates haven't actually been downloaded and applied, so it's a bit confusing here. To actually install the updates, which is of course your goal, click on the informative text "4 important updates are available" (or however many you find available for your system).
Now you'll get a detailed listing of every single update including descriptions and download sizes:
Install everything. Click on "Install" on the lower right. Everything will download, install, your system will likely restart, and you're good to go. And next time you have automatic updates turned on so you can promptly forget about this task. :-)
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