Newsletter Archives

  • A possible solution to the forced “Upgrade to Windows 10” Windows Update dialog?

    In my earlier post, I asked for ideas about blocking the Windows 10 upgrade from Win 7 or Win 8.1, in a very late stage. For most people, running GWX Control Panel from Josh Mayfield will keep Win 7 or 8.1 from installing Windows 10. However, it doesn’t work for everybody. In particular, people in a very late stage of the Windows 10 forced march will see the dialog shown here whenever they go into Windows Update. It’s scary because it looks like you have no option except to install Windows 10.

    Two of you kindly chimed in with a possible solution. If you’re currently in the late stage – you see this dialog box in Windows Update – I’d like you to verify if this works for you.

    Per reader Erik:

    When I try to download and install updates, I get a downloading Windows 10 progress bar. However, it doesn’t download Windows 10. It actually downloads the updates I selected and installs them, but it doesn’t have the status bar (1 of 12 etc). So functionally it does work like it should, but cosmetically it looks like it downloads and installs Windows 10.

    Reader DeWayne:

    So as an experiment I unchecked all the updates and picked a small one clicked download. Downloading Windows 10 came on screen I watched for about 30 sec and it changed to updating. When I rebooted WU correctly identified a small critical update as installed. I went ahead and checked the critical updates available and installed and confirmed nothing related to Windows 10 was installed. But every since all WU updates the screen displays downloading Windows 10

    That’s a tremendous (and reassuring!) discovery, if I can get it confirmed on enough machines.

    If you have a Win7 or Win 8.1 machine that’s stuck in the “Upgrade to Windows 10” dialog – the one shown here – could you do me (and about a million other people) a huge favor?

    Click on the link to Show all available updates.

    Check the box on one of the updates.

    Uncheck the box that says “Upgrade to Windows 10”

    Install updates.

    Your machine should show that it’s installing Windows 10 – but in a minute or two or three, it’ll come back showing that it’s installed the one update you selected, and not the Windows 10 update. It may even show that one of the selected installations has failed – the Windows 10 update.

    (If the update goes on for more than a few minutes, the experiment failed – Cancel the update.)

    LarryH, on a separate thread, reported something similar. I’ve asked Larry to drop by here and see if this synopsis accurately reflects what happened to him.

    If you’re stuck in the final stages, or know someone who is, could you have them try this approach and see if it works?

  • Any solution to the “Windows 10 must update” problem?

    I’m getting more and more plaintive cries for help from Win7 and Win8.1 users who find that they can’t get Windows Update to perform any update, other than installing Windows 10. They can view available updates, they can even uncheck the “Upgrade to Windows 10” item. But as soon as they try to apply any updates other than Windows 10, their machines start downloading (and presumably installing) Windows 10.

    I’ve asked a couple of people who are in that position to move to an earlier restore point. Other than that, I can’t think of – or find – any solutions.

    Does anybody out there know how to derail the Windows 10 Update train? That is, to take a machine that won’t let you apply any updates other than Windows 10, and shake some sense into it?

  • It’s unlikely that Microsoft’s pushing Windows 10 files onto Windows 7 machines

    Another one of those rumors that’s bound to take off like wildfire. I’ve seen it already on Neowin and Business Insider, and Forbes can’t be too far behind.

    Stick to the facts, folks, if you can find them.

    InfoWorld Woody on Windows

  • Has AskWoody gone soft?

    Fair question from reader JN:

    Here’s the rub: for as long as I have been following ASKWOODY.COM, Woody has been firm about the automatic update issue and therefore has gone out of his way to provide the MS-Defcon ratings for the benefit of his readers.

    Since Windows 10 does not allow the user to turn off automatic updates, I expected you to take a negative position re. Windows 10. Am I wrong?

    And here’s my answer:

    So far, Win10 patches have been fairly good. I’m willing to give Microsoft the benefit of the doubt. 

    I also take a strong stance on personal privacy, and Win10 rubs me the wrong way.
    Still, there’s a lot to like about Win10.
    Rock and a hard place time, eh?
  • How to avoid Windows 10

    Just got an interesting question from reader CT:

    It looks like Windows 10 is coming down the chute and no way to avoid it. How does one stay with Windows 7 ?

    Thanks for everything you do!!!!!

    I’ve been hitting Windows 10, hard, ever since the first beta arrived in January. Writing the new “Windows 10 All-In-One For Dummies” has forced me to look into every nook and cranny. It’s hard to fill 1,000 pages without having a few things rub off.

    The main thing that rubbed off? Most people will arguably benefit from going to Windows 10, probably with some key privacy setting changes, but it’d be a very good idea to wait a few months to see what falls off in the process. We’ll also hear many more details about how Windows 10 is going to work. Unless you’re running Windows XP (if so, Win10 may or may not run on your box), I see no advantage at all to moving to Windows 10 this month or next month — and plenty of reasons to hold back.

    My answer to CT is simple: If you want to stick with Win 7 (or Win 8.1 or Vista), don’t do anything. Microsoft will dangle lots of carrots. They may swing some dire sticks. They’ll certainly spend hundreds of millions of dollars trying to convince you to switch to Windows 10. But you don’t have to do it. You shouldn’t, at least in the near term. And the best way to keep from getting Win10 is to NOT click on anything that says “Install Windows 10.”

    Unless you explicitly give your permission, Microsoft will not change the OS on your machine.

    Just say, click or tap NO.