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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    How do I determine if I should install optional updates?

    Currently I have 16 optional updates showing in Windows Update, as follows:

    Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5.1 for Windows 7 (KB2858725)
    nVidia - Graphics Adapter WDDM1.1, Graphics Adapter WDDM1.2, Graphics Adapter WDDM1.3 - NVIDIA GeForce GT 220
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2574819)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2592687)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2800095)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2830477)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2843630)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2847077)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2891804)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2908783)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2913152)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2913431)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2918077)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2919469)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2928562)
    Update for Windows 7 (KB2929755)

    As an average PC user without lots of technical knowledge, how am I supposed to know whether or not I need to install these updates?
    Am I correct in assuming that as they are optional my PC will continue to operate perfectly well without them, and if so then why does Windows Update even list them as optional?

    Thanks for any information anybody can provide.

  2. #2
    Platinum Lounger
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    You could follow the recommendations in the Windows secrets newsletter - this is a subscription, but it's cheap.

    cheers, Paul

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  4. #3
    4 Star Lounger
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    Paul brings up an excellent point. I myself do refer the recommendations in the Windows Secrets Newsletter
    --- I usually wait for 2 weeks after patch Tuesday which I dub as Patch Tuesday 2
    --- In the examples you provide, unless there's a reason not to install any of the above, I would install the 14 Updates for Windows 7 as a group and then use the computer as usual
    --- Later on in the day, if there aren't any issues, I would install the nVidia update and again use the computer as usual
    --- Then I would do the .Net Framework the next morning and continue using the computer as usual
    ------ I would like to add that not all .Net's are needed but in my case I include them anyway
    ------ It's only happened to me once over the years, but at that time I needed to install some .Net version for some reason that I don't recall and since then I just do them when they are available
    I have an 8 1/2" x 11" notebook to handwrite what I do but with short descriptions and then check them off when completed
    --- On the example you provide, I would write 12 optional updates for Windows 7, 1 nVidia & 1 .Net
    --- If any of the updates are noted in the Windows Secrets Newsletter for whatever reason, I include that in my notes and follow the recommendations
    --- This may seem like overkill but that's a habit I took up during my XP days
    Then there are some optional updates that are user decisions
    --- For example, many of my friends do not use MSN, so I show them how to hide them
    Note that I use an 8 1/2" x 11" notebook and not scraps of paper
    --- I'm so used to writing my notes that it's become 2nd nature to me
    Those are my approaches but to each his/her own plan is what counts

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    Garpet (2014-04-21)

  6. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    The subscription method mentioned by Paul is your best bet, but you could also do a little work on your own here too;

    Research the individual updates to determine if there is anything that will be pertinent to your situation.
    For example: Update for Windows 7 (KB2574819)
    This might be a worthwhile update if you use remote desktop on your system.

    Generally, if these optional KB updates are light weight and non intrusive, I'll just install them irregardless.

    As for the GPU driver update, you'll only need to consider it if you have an issue that it reports it can fix.
    Hide this update if you don't intend to install. WU usually installs these GPU updates in their entirety, meaning, you'll get
    unnecessary features one would normally exclude by doing a custom install.
    (Always avoid GPU updates from WU for this very reason*GPU updates should always be sough directly from the vendor's site
    This way a custom install can be done and only the driver selected for install)

    As for the .NET Framwork, if some application or component needs it, it will certainly "bark" for it in an error message.
    So there is no rush in this one, unless you know for certain you've got something that relies on it.
    Last edited by CLiNT; 2014-04-21 at 13:47.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

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  8. #5
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Garpet,

    Be adventurous and install them all! Of course before you do this take the precaution of making an Image Backup of your system partition (usually C:) if not your entire drive. That way if the balloon goes up you just do a quick restore and you're back to your old normal. HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    VBA Rules!

    My Systems: Desktop Specs
    Laptop Specs


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    cmptrgy (2014-04-21),Garpet (2014-04-21),mrjimphelps (2014-04-21)

  10. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Yeah, I did that too recently with an updated NVidia driver. (direct from NVidia though, not WU)
    (I'm 3 or 4 versions behind and didn't want to go through the hassle of reading the spec/fix sheet)

    It works out well too, and if the system remains stable and everything is working as it should, I may consider deleting the old image
    and creating the new one.

    With drive imaging one can be far more adventurous without having to worry as much about potentially disastrous consequences.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

  11. #7
    New Lounger
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    Thank you everyone for your helpful comments.

    As Paul suggested, I will certainly check recommendations in the Windows Secrets newsletter, and also adopt some of the other suggestions.

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