Why Windows 7 updates take so long to install?


I don't understand a phenomenon that Windows 7 produces. Why updates installed through Windows Update take soooooo long? For example Windows 7 Service Pack 1, or more recently this Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Service Pack 1, or any .NET Framework updates took ages to install: first TrustedInstaller or other similar processes worked in the background for about 3 hours - I could still use my computer but everything worked quite slow during this time. Then, when I turned off my computer I took another 2 hours to turn off. Then, when I turned on my computer it took another 1 hour to install and "configure Windows" and only then I could start using my computer again. Then, even when finally Windows was fully started it took another almost 2 hours until TrustedInstaller and other similar processes finally stopped using loads of CPU and HDD time... That is about 8 hours!!! To completely install Windows 7 from install DVD on a new computer it takes about 45 minutes. So why on earth an update takes 10 times longer than that?! Also, I can hard format a 320GB HDD in less that 4 hours, or can completely fill it up with stuff within hours - Windows could have completely delete and rewrite everything on the HDD twice in 8 hours... (But as C operating system partition is only 60GB, it could have that that probably 10 times in 8 hours...). So would you please explain this to me? I really would like to understand.

Also, it is very annoying, that although I bought my laptop 2+ weeks ago and used (or try to use) it every day, after two weeks it still installs and installs. I am fed up and pondering turning off the entire automatic updates completely. Or migrate to Linux. It is lightyears faster (why?).

Thank you.


Okay, a few more details: the laptop is an Asus, with 4GB memory, 1.9GHz dual core processor. It had Windows 7 Home Premium preloaded. I turned it on, burnt the recovery DVDs as it was recommended, then started to use it. Soon I noticed that things worked slow and that HDD LED was flashing all the time. I checked task manager and resource meter and I figured out that it was downloading and installing updates. I let it finish (hours) and the turned off the computer (took an hour or so, it installed some 83 updates). Next day I turned it on, it took approx another hour to start and then two hours or so to finish whatever it had to finish (30-60% CPU load and HDD LED flashing all the time). Then I was happy that it finished installing finally, and I could use my laptop. Then, two day later came the Service Pack 1 and took ages - it updated it automatically, I never went to Windows Update and never started a manual update. Then again, and again, every two or three days it installed more an

Update 2:

more and more updates. Now there are some 120 or so updates on it... I am wondering when it gonna finish?

The points that I am really interested in:

- When it will finish all the updates finally? How many more updates are there?

- Why on earth it takes this long to install updates? I could install the whole Windows 7 much faster than these updates take... Is it a programming bug in Windows 7? (Don't think it's the laptop. My wife's desktop (3+GHz dual core processor) computer has Windows 7 as well, and every few week it does the same slow updating. (And it is not the downloading, have 20MBit cable internet) Only difference is that her desktop computer installs updates once or twice every few weeks, whereas my laptop installs updates once or twice very few days...).

- Why Windows needs all these updates? I mean, compared to Linux, it is crap in terms of security. Linux seems a lot more safe system without security updates than Widnows (not just 7, but Vista, XP etc. too

Update 3:

too) with updates. Why there are so many Windows viruses and so few Linux ones. Did Microsoft designed Windows 95/98/ME/2000/Xp/Vista/7 (and the coming 8) with a flaw that provides viruses with a better chance to spread, infect and cause damage than Linux? Also Linux seems a lot faster. Applications start faster.Op system starts faster. From a live DVD it even installs into memory in approx. 3-4 minutes! I can't help but I have this feeling since Windows 98 or so (since I had internet and security issues) that something is wrong with Windowses. They are large, work slow, full with security issues and problems.

Sorry this simple questions is developing into something much more complex and complicated topic. The original question was why is an update taking 5x longer than a whole Windows install?

8 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Crap like that happens,

    when you buy an old computer with an outdated operating system,

    it updates to install the latest security fix's and patches.

    it does it as carefully as possible,

    so as not to damage the system.

    if you just installed the updates during shutdown,

    then you would not have a problem.

    installing updates while you are still using the computer

    is idiotic.

    a anti virus system such as Norton will cause the updates to install at a virtual standstill.

    i reckon your computer has been preloaded with commercial crap.


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  • 8 years ago

    right first of all you said something about the partition, if it's only a certain size that might have an efect on it/

    1st, make sure you put an hour or so aside or just updates, so update you laptop one a day let it install what it needs to, don't use your laptop, the more resources you use the less resources the installations use.

    I don't know why it takes this long to update and install the longest i had to wait was 30 minutes that was a complete download of 45+ updates including .net framework and visual C++ etc, there is something going on with your laptop i think. give it a good clean, defrag and run the chkdsk utility.

    when it took another two hours to turn off are you sure all the updates have finished etc.

    also i think if it running that slow i don't think the specs for you laptop are good enough although if you bought it 2+ weeks ago it should be more than capable (if bought brand new) nowadays windows 7 runs better on dual core processors or higher, at least 2Gb RAM for better performance doesn't quite matter on hard drive.

    but find out your make and model of your hard drive as the rpm of the HDD could affect the read and write speed of the HDD, this can slow down installations includin updates.

    hope this helps a little

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  • 4 years ago


    Source(s): Perfect Antivirus Protection Suite : http://MoveAntiVirus.com/?iOuV
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  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    All of these people telling you you are wrong, are wrong. Windows update takes an insanely long time to finish. I am a computer tech, and I have the same issue with i7's as I do with Celerons. While it shouldn't take all night, windows updates (if there are more than 1-2 of them) take eons to complete. When I load a new computer, and leave it over night I am always annoyed when I try to shutdown the PC to install it for a new user and it says "0/49 updates installing". Even on an i7 with an SSD you are looking at, at least an hour. It is annoying and absurd. I love windows, I don't want to switch, but this is a CONSTANT headache.

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  • 8 years ago

    If you feel Linux is better than Windows, by all means, install Linux. No one here cares what operating system you use, so they're not going to try to convince you to stick with Windows if that's what you're looking for.

    As for updates taking a long time, check the health of your PC. Clean out junk files, clean the registry, do a disk scan, etc. And like someone else said your anti-virus can cause updates to run slow so make sure you disable it before you try to run them.

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  • hemppy
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    hi attila, the first thing that you need to do is to find out what size your processor is so if it is not a 3.0 this is some of your problem a slow processor is a slow brain and needs to be upgraded to a 3.5. now here is a problem also but i have to tell you a story that i had a local dialup internet provider when someone across town got online i would get knocked off. so i had some phone problems and a repairman came out to fix it and i told him about my dillima he asked me have you ever thought about dsl broadband. well i thought okay here comes the commercial about something else that is going to give me a problem. well other issues pushed me to get dsl broadband that was eight years ago it is great. not one problem in eight years when ever i had a problem a telephone call corrected the problem. and that is what i recommend for you. if you have a slow download this is usually the problem. good luck i hope i was helpful to you

    Source(s): when you formated your hard drive did you delete that old partition if you had a virus this can slow your computer down too. and a format cannot fix it unless your delete that old partition. you will recieve a message that you may be deleteing a driver that you may need ignore it and continue delete that partition and hit next and it will install. if it is still slow consult your computer repairman. take care :)
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  • Yeti
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    You probably have something else wrong with your computer, such as a failing hard drive. That's not normal. If you think Linux is so hot, use it and have fun.

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  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    it depends...

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