I Just Changed The Way I Receive Windows Updates AND Here Is Why…

November 23, 2014

I cannot stress enough, from a computer security standpoint, the importance of the Windows Updates. Microsoft goes to great lengths to keep our PC’s safe; HOWEVER, this past week I had an experience on a brand new PC that I had customized to my liking where I believe a Windows Update caused me a lot of grief. I experienced similar symptoms, as reported at 404 Tech Support, where they made determination that a specific update on machines with the Avast Anti-Virus installed caused the following symptoms to occur:

  • Restarting or shutting down would never complete
  • Uninstalling a program would hang
  • Certain startup programs would never launch
  • Opening computer properties (Right-click on This PC, select Properties) would never open

In my case, I experienced the exact same symptoms; HOWEVER, was not the same cause(s). I did not (initially) install the update as indicated in the 404 Tech Support article and do not have Avast installed. My problem started out when I booted my Windows 81. box and was greeted with a message indicating that Windows was installing new features and telling me to wait. Of course I am scratching my head going, “What new features???  I didn’t install or ask for any new features”. Needless to say, the computer hung on that screen (and message) and did not move forward. I ended up booting into the Windows reset, refresh and restore options. I attempted a restore and that did not work properly, as well. I performed a reboot again, and the PC did start to the desktop; however, that is when I experienced the symptoms as reflected above. After a second start of the computer, the computer started to run properly (for whatever reason). I immediately ran a scan for malware and checked all areas (startup, processes, services, etc…) to make sure I was not hit with something.

The only thing that I could come up with was when I went to do the Windows restore, the restore point was showing that Windows updates KB2920189 and KB3011780 had been installed. Update KB3011780 was showing in the Windows Updates history that it had been cancelled at one point, but also showed on the same date it did install successfully. It is my thinking that this update may have caused the issues I was experiencing.

After getting things back in order and the computer running properly. I manually downloaded the update as reflected in the article 404 Tech Support had problems with (which showed as an optional update on my PC) and the update installed with no issue on my PC. Note: By the way, that optional update (KB8000850) is a large core Windows update.

Needless to say, after reading the article at 404 Tech Support and my own experience with a potential Windows Update that went wild, I now have my computer configured to “Check for updates but let me choose whether to download or install them…”.

Windows Update Configuration

I do not recommend this setting, but from a troubleshooting standpoint, I am going this route for now. There have been too many Windows 8 (8.1) updates that have caused problems and this will put me in control to monitor the updates more closely and to educate myself more about Windows Updates.

If anyone else experienced a Windows Update issue, please feel free to share your experience and comment below…

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Looking For An Online File Storage Option? Give OneDrive A Try

May 2, 2014

[FEATURED GEEK SQUEAK] Looking For An Online File Storage Option? Give OneDrive A Try– If you are looking for a reputable place to store online files, you may want to sign up for a Microsoft OneDrive Account.

OneDrive

You will automatically receive, for FREE, 7GBs of online storage space that can be used to store your files, such as documents, pictures, videos, etc…  If you [click here] and sign up today, you will get an additional 0.5GBs of space on top of the 7GBs.  Once you have signed up, make sure you download the OneDrive Software that will give you the ability to sync files on your computer with your OneDrive account. Once the software is installed you will see a OneDrive folder on your PC. OneDrive is also available for the Windows Tablet, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and Xbox.

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Learn a byte at a time, at What’s On My PC, with Geek Squeaks’ — featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it… I just plain love tech!


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[WINDOWS SOFTWARE] Reporting on Internet Browsing History by Site, Date, and Time – BrowsingHistoryView is a single executable that can, when run, retrieve and display browsing history information for visited URL, page title, time visited, how many times the page was visited, the web browser used, and the user profile doing the browsing. BrowsingHistoryView supports Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and SeaMonkey… @WindowsITPro

[TABLET ACCESSORIES] BlueMart ® 6Pcs Colorful Portable Foldable Smartphone and Tablet Stand – [click here]

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Watch movies, surf the net, read content on your device hands free. Suitable for landscape and Vertical View. Dimensions: 4.5″(L) x 1.25″(W)… @Amazon

[WINDOWS 8.1] Help, Windows 8 refusing to install major update! – Now on to this week’s topic from member Matthew, who has been having difficulties updating a few Windows 8 computers to Windows 8.1 and finds that attempting to do the update corrupts the OS. He has noted that all of these machines that are having problems were previously upgraded from Windows 7 to 8… @c|net

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Update Microsoft Windows Without An Internet Connection

December 8, 2011

There are still folks out there that I know personally that are on a dialup internet connection and not by choice. Broadband service just is not there and any mention of using a 3G, 4G or satellite connection is too expensive and besides those services can be sketchy at best, depending on the location and the environment.

What these folks run into, and I’m working with someone on this now, is that due to the dialup speeds in these remote locations not even being up to standard (due to poor telephone lines), downloading the Windows updates that they need for their PC’s ends up being nothing but pure process of drudgery. Think about it, if you are already on a slow dialup connection and you have your updates set to auto update, when those weekly auto updates kick in,  the connection speed slows down that much further. Couple that with other security software updates and general software updates and I think you can see what I mean about a pure process of drudgery.

To workaround this problem and get the Windows updates, I use a program called WSUS Offline Update. You will need to find someone with a broadband connection who is willing to use WSUS Offline Update software on their PC and willing to download the updates for you. You will also need to know what operating system you are using (i.e. Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7).

With WSUS Offline Update there are two components to the software. One is the “Generator” interface that you use to select the what language and Operating system you need the updates for.  You can even tell the “Generator” to copy the updates to a flash drive; which, you can then use to update the target computer.

image

When downloading the updates, a command console window (see below) will appear and you will see the software going to work to pull down the updates. Do not be alarmed if the first time you perform this process that it takes a long time (even on a broadband connection).  A long time can be an hour to several hours, but you have to do what you have to do.

WSUS Windows Update - Console Window

The second component built into WSUS Offline Update is the “Installer” that you use on the target computer.  To start up the installer look for the file “Updateinstaller.exe”, double click on it and the “Installer” interface will initiate with various selections to help you through the update process.

WSUS Windows Update - Installer

There are other options out there to download the Windows Updates; however, I have found the WSUS Offline Update utility to be the winner.

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Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#44)

January 20, 2010

Welcome to the 44th round of Geek Squeaks’.  If you have a passion for information technology and computers, then you are at the right place.  Geek Squeaks’ is a weekly roundup of links to articles produced by bloggers (and site owners) associated with the What’s On My PC blogroll community.  I encourage you to pay a special visit to each of these sites to support their incredible work…

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Tech-for Everyone
What is Mobsync?

thePC Security
HDD Password Removal –
Crack, Clear, Unlock, Reset a Locked Hard Disk

Lifehacker
Seems Like Everyone’s Getting Faster Internet but the U.S.

Rarst.net
Colorjive.com – online image editor to paint walls

AskBillFirst
Microsoft urges Windows XP users to ditch old Flash version

Free PC Security
Malicious Sites January 19

Snakebytez
Create a System Restore Point in 1-click with Quick Restore Maker

TTC Shelbyville
Online Network Tools

I Love Free Software
RegKey Backup – Free Software to Registry Backup

Worthy Tips
Download ‘Your Guide to Windows 7′ EBook

Mrintech
Help Haiti People: Donate Online or via Text

Canadian Tech Blogger
Firefox 3.6 RC2 Out

AKS-Feel The Change
What’s My Computer Doing?

Carol’s Vault
PDF Password Remover – remove your PDF’s restrictions

411-Spyware.com
How to Remove Win Security 360

Plato On-Line
World Netizen’s Day

Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts
Safe, Secure Browsing, with Free WOT Browser Add-on

Big Geek Daddy
How to Control Startup Programs

Computer Maintenance
How To Set Windows Automatic Update

Technogran’s Tittle Tattle
Windows Live Mail Wave4, it’s all looking good!

TuneUp Blog
Get More Privacy! How to Remove Personal Information from Files

Internet Security Blog
Auto Lock Computer Screen With USB – Free Download

Geeked Up
6 Important Steps on How to Maximize Firefox Screen Space

Technize
Find Your Files Faster with Windows 7

Whats On My PC
The Ultimate Clock for your Windows Desktop

StumbleIt

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Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#41)

December 30, 2009

After a month of moving and no Geek Squeaks’; it is time!  I present to you the 41st version of Geek Squeaks’.  If you are new to the blog, Geek Squeaks’ is a weekly roundup of articles from the author’s associated with the What’s On My PC blogroll community.  This community consists of a group of people, from around the world, that bring to us a vast sea of computer and technology information.  I encourage all of you to bookmark these sites and pay them a visit on a regular basis.  You will not regret it…

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Snakebytez
Hide Windows Drives with NoDrives Manager

Carputers News and Computer Tips
Load and Help Campaign by SoftMaker

TTC Shelbyville
Data Recovery Freeware Roundup

The Abbey Rose
Windows Update Broke?

I Love Free Software
gDoc Creator: Convert Word to PDF and PDF to Word

Technize
Customize And Personalize Your USB Pen Drive

Worthy Tips
Photovisi – Lets You Create Your Own Photo Collage Online Free

Canadian Tech Blogger
Windows 7 Going Over Well With IT Community

Computer Maintenance
Uninstall Unwanted Programs

Technogran’s Tittle Tattle
Windows Live, its not the same……

TuneUp Blog
Enabling DirectCompute for Windows Vista and 7

Free PC Security
Three Words For 2010

AskBillFirst
Dragon Naturally Speaking

Tech-for Everyone
Tech-for Everyone – Computer Shopper Blogs We Like

Rarst.net
Rollip.com – collection of graphical filters for photos

Lifehacker
You Don’t Need to Regularly Reinstall Windows; Here’s Why

Crazy World of G
Truth or Consequences

thePC Security
Data Encryption: A Free, Open Source, Portable, Simple Tool for Windows

AKS-Feel The Change
Change your Drive Icons and background Image

Carol’s Vault
A look back at the past 10 years: the bloody decade

411-Spyware.com
How to Remove SystemCleanerPro

Teck~Line
Happy Holiday to Everyone

Plato On-Line
Top 10 Consumer Web Apps of 2009

Evilfantasy’s Blog
The Ultimate Geek TaskForce!

Geeked Up
15.4″ LCD Screen Resolutions

Bill Mullins’ Weblog – Tech Thoughts
Spyware Doctor with Anti-Virus 2010 – Free License Giveaway

Freeware Pharmacy
JPEG Lossless Rotator

What’s On My PC
Double Desktop – Like having two monitors in one…

StumbleIt

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April Fool’s Day – Conficker hot topic…

March 30, 2009

While enjoying lunch today with my parents my Mother asked me if I knew about the Conficker worm.  I nearly fell off my chair and was thinking; “Mom is becoming a techie?”.

Conficker

Sometime back I did (3)-three posts on the Conficker worm:

Worm Bounty Set By Microsoft ($250,000)

Downadup (aka: Conficker, Kido) is using AutoRun
to spread “like a can of worms”…

Is your system infected by the Downadup Worm, Conficker or Kido?

I found that Mom had been following the news on the Conficker worm on one of the national TV networks. The news media is taking Conficker and really running with it. Remember hot news keeps an audience. Create a panic and they will come… Too bad they do not carry special “daily” segments on the other security threats on the internet where people are having their money and privacy taken away.

To keep you up to date, the Conficker worm virus, which has literally baffled the IT experts, has infected over 10 million PC’s worldwide since November 2008  The conficker worm takes advantage of a vulnerability in Windows that Microsoft patched back in October 2008. If your PC is patched, then do not worry.

The April 1st threat (or any date for that matter) is speculation that the network of computers, already infected by the Conficker program, will start scanning thousands of websites for a new set of malicious instructions. In essence, these computers would become part of a network of robots (called a botnet) that would execute the instructions, once received. For example, if instruction were received by 10 million computers to attack (flood with data), specific websites, it could bring the sites down and even affect the integrity of the internet.

As always, keep the software on your computer up to date; especially your Window’s updates and your system security software.

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Worm Bounty set by Microsoft ($250,000)

February 16, 2009

Remember the Conficker worm that you recently read about here on “What’s on my PC…” [ click here ] ?  In summary, Microsoft is going on the offensive by offering a quarter of a million dollars to track down the author(s) of the Conficker worm (aka: downadup, Kido). Conficker exploits a Windows vulnerability; patched by the October ‘08 Microsoft security update. If you had your PC configured to receive Microsoft updates automatically, you would have received the patch (or fix) this past October.  Numerous reports are indicating that, as many as, 10 million PC’s have been infected.  Being a former IT Manager, I have to wonder how many business and government entities were standing with their pants down on this one.  No excuse in missing Windows updates, on the business or government level, in my opinion.

Wanted Conficker Worm

clipped from www.foxnews.com

Microsoft Posts $250,000 Reward for PC Hackers


Friday, February 13, 2009


Look out, computer hackers– there’s a new sheriff in town.


Microsoft announced Thursday that it had placed a $250,000 bounty on the heads of the developers and distributors of a nasty computer virus that’s been worming its way worldwide for months.


Known as the Conficker (a pun on “configure” and a four-letter German swear word) or Downadup worm , the virus has infected at least 10 million Windows-based computers since it first appeared in October. It’s forced the British and French navies to take some systems offline.

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