Friday, November 18, 2011

Disabling Auto Restart After Windows 7 Update

I have recently choose Windows 7 as the Operating System for my home NAS. After testing FreeNAS, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Windows XP and Windows 2003 Server, I must say that there are many reasons that pushed me to this difficult choice and there are a lot of advantages to use Windows 7 as a File Server.

However I am not going to talk about this right now.

What I wanted to talk about is NAS availability: if there is one thing I expect from my NAS, it is it to be on and ready to serve all the time. Not a minute less.

Unfortunately this Microsoft OS is too often trying and sometimes succeeding in rebooting my home server in the middle of the night, when I less expect it. And this is something I don't like at all, not even to apply critical security patches that clever people at Big Brother Microsoft have crafted for me.

That's why I want to share a not-so-secret hint on how to stop Windows update from restarting your system once and for all. It is a easy painless method which, as usual under Windows, consists of adding a registry key.

Here's the procedure:

  • Open up regedit.exe through the start menu search box or run dialog, and navigate down to the following key: HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU
  • In the right pane, right-click into the white area and select New – DWORD (32-bit)
  • Enter the name NoAutoRebootWithLoggedOnUsers 
  • Double-click on NoAutoRebootWithLoggedOnUsers and enter the value 1
  • Close the Registry Editor

It's done. Easy, isn't it? Windows Update restarts have gone forever. My NAS can live peaceful and untroubled. I'll take care of restarting my system when I, and only I, will think it necessary.

1 comment:

  1. This has been bugging be too. I run a few VMs on Win7 x64. I found the Auto Update key here:

    HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\WindowsUpdate\Auto Update\

    I am using x64 Ultimate is the US.



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