A new or (more typically) rebuilt Win7 system requires some extra care to get fully patched.
The updating process can be long and tedious; here’s how to get through it as quickly as possible.
Windows 10 is rapidly becoming the preferred operating system, but there are millions of Win7 machines still in use. If you’re rebuilding a Win7 PC from scratch, or you’re setting up a new virtual machine, or you’ve looked around and found a new system to purchase, you’re going to have to install over 200 updates to get it current. That process is not just time consuming, it can also be tricky.
Here’s the quick list of steps for getting a Win7 system fully patched and working well. I’ll go into each step further below.
- Step 1. Start by determining whether you have the original release-to-manufacturer version of Win7 or you have Win7 Service Pack 1 (SP1)
- Step 2. If you need SP1, download it ahead of time.
- Step 3. Download an enterprise update rollup that is closest to SP2 for Win7.
- Step 4. Download IE 11.
- Step 5. Download and install the latest Windows Update client update.
- Step 6. Enable Microsoft Update to ensure that all remaining updates are installed.
- Step 7. Finish installing all offered updates.
Here are the details.
Determine whether you have Windows 7 SP1
If you built your Win7 installation from media on hand, it might not include the critical Service Pack 1. To check, click Start/Control Panel/System. The System panel notes whether Service Pack 1 is installed. If you’ve recently purchased a new PC with Win7, it will most likely have SP1. But check anyway. (If it doesn’t have SP1, take the machine back! It’s not new.)
If you don’t have SP1, manually download it to your machine. But first, there’s one more confirmation you need to make before you acquire it. Check whether you have 32- or 64-bit Windows. Most systems purchased within the past several years are 64 bit.