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Windows Update - Alert domain users before restart.

Posted on 2008-10-24
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Last Modified: 2013-12-04
Hello Experts,

I have a Windows 2003 server with SP1. Windows Update is set to automatically download and install any updates, which I consider both good and bad.

Good because it patches any security flaws every day if available.
Bad because the server will restart itself after installing the updates automatically without any prior warning.

Question:
The auto download and install is handy, as it gives me peace of mind that the server is keeping itself up to date with the latest patches without me having to constantly login to every server and see which updates are available.

However:
The bad side of this is the server will decide to restart itself as and when it fancies without any prior warning to the people who might be using the server at the time, which can be pretty much 24/7 - not good.

Does anyone know of a way I can trigger a message using 'net send * Your server has just downloaded some updates and is going to restart in 2 minutes whether you like it or not, so save your **** make a cup of tea and hang around for 5 minutes and with any luck services will be back to normal soon (unless I've just downloaded Service Pack 3 or somthing stupid where upon it is most likely all your data will be lost forever) Hang loose - back in 5 (with any luck - Fingers crossed - Here we go...Eeek!)

I probably won't broadcast the message in that exact format, but a network message before auto re-boot would be nice.

Any one with any ideas?

Many thanks.
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Question by:Sci-Fi-Si
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Author Comment

by:Sci-Fi-Si
ID: 22797337
Doh! I meant to say SP2, not that it would make any difference to the method needed.

:)
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Accepted Solution

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arnold earned 250 total points
ID: 22797357
You can configure the GPO that manages the windows updates not to reboot the server even after the updates are installed.
It is often not advisable to configure the server for auto download and install.
open the GPO using GPMC.
Computer settings\administrative templates\windows components\windows update\
enable the no auto-restart with logged on users.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Sci-Fi-Si
ID: 31509694
Thanks for that arnold,

It's a shame I'm so lazy, but with your suggestion at least I know that updates have been downloaded and installed even if the server hasn't been restarted.

I take it though that with this method the server will restart itself as soon as it detects no one is logged on?

Many thanks for your help, good on ya' sport!
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