Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Stop That Windows Automatic Reboot After Updates

I just came back to my rebuilt XP laptop after a meeting and found that it had rebooted itself, losing some code changes I was working on. One of the most annoying things about Windows XP is the way it will automatically reboot after installing a Windows update. Every time I set up a new Windows machine I forget about it until I suddenly find my machine rebooted and all my work-in-progess lost or in a questionable state. Thanks guys.

But there's a way to fix it besides running Linux or Mac OS X.

There are two settings we can change. One is to disable the automatic reboot. The other is to slow down the popup prompt that keeps reminding you to reboot.
  1. Start->run "gpedit.msc".
  2. Go to Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Update.
  3. Change the "No auto-restart..." setting to "Enabled".
  4. Change the "Re-prompt for restart..." setting to "Enabled" and change the wait period to 1440 minutes (the max).

Now when an update requires a reboot, you'll get a popup reminder window only once a day and more importantly, no automatic reboots.

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