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Automatically Install Critical Updates in Windows XP

NOTE: In order to perform these steps, you must have Administrator privileges on your Windows XP computer.  This process will run in all user profiles, regardless of permission level, once these steps have been completed by the system administrator.

Step 1.  While pressing down the windows key ÿ, click the R key to make the Run window appear.

Note:  If your keyboard doesn't have a windows key ÿ, you can click on Start -> Run instead.

The Run window allows you to type in commands to be executed by Windows. 

Step 2.  In the Run window, type control (as shown above) and then click the OK button.  This will open the Control Panel window (below) which contains the icon to be used.

Step 3.  Note that in Windows XP, it is possible that your Control Panel windows resembles the above image .  If this is the case, click Switch to Classic View in the upper left corner of the window to return the Control Panel window to the classic view.  Otherwise, proceed to the next step.

Step 4.  In Windows XP, double-click on the System icon in the Control Panel window.  Click on the Automatic Updates tab in the resulting System Properties window.

Step 5.  In the System Properties window (shown above) proceed with the following steps:

A. Check the box next 'Keep my computer up to date'.
B. Select the Option to "Automatically download the updates...", and install them...'
C. Select Every Day, and a convenient time during the day when your computer is running.
D. Click the 'OK' button to close the System Properties window..

Step 6.  Close all windows opened during this procedure to finish.  Windows will now automatically download and install critical updates on your computer whenever the updates are available.  After the updates have been installed, you may be prompted to save your work and reboot your computer.

Step 7.  On a regular basis, you should follow the below manual update procedure:

         A. Go to http://update.microsoft.com/microsoftupdate
         B. Scan for updates
         C. Apply ALL Critical Security Updates and Service Packs