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Killing the Windows Update Nag Popup

June 2, 2011 | 1 Comment

After installing SP1 for Windows 7, it kindly reset my Automatic Update options from “manual” to “automatic” without informing me, which is why I was suddenly surprised by the all too familiar Windows Update popup window the other day.


It gives me the option to “Restart Now” or “Postpone.” The problem with this is even if I click “Postpone,” the nag window will popup again within 4 hours (the longest “Remind me in” option), and if I happen to be away from my computer or even *gasp* sleeping, it will automatically restart even if I don’t click anything.

So what can you do in this situation? Stop the windows update service! This will disable the nag popup until you manually restart. This can be done in several ways via the command prompt. (If you are using Windows 7, remember to open the Command Prompt with Administrator privileges.)

> sc stop wuauserv
This uses the SC (service control) command to stop the windows update service.

> net stop "windows update"
This uses the older NET command to do the same thing.

Both approaches yield the same result. SC allows you to query additional information about the service, which is nice. (Type SC without any arguments for help, or look here.)

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