Updating your computer is almost complete - Restart Now?

Anyone who is running Windows XP SP2 knows what I'm talking about. That stupid, annoying, most ill-designed dialog box ever invented in the history of the computer science that asks "Updating your computer is almost complete. You must restart your computer for the updates to take effect. Do you want to restart your computer now?"

And there are only two options: Restart Now/Restart Later. "Restart Later" means that this stupid thing will ask you again in 10 minutes. Yes, if you're willing to work for the next 4 hours until lunch before rebooting, this means you'll need to answer this question 24 times. Did I mention that the dialog steals the focus?

Now, to get rid of it:


Go to Start -> Run and enter gpedit.msc in the dialog box that pops up and hit the enter key.

In the window that opens, go to:

Local Computer Policy -> Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Update -> Re-prompt for restart with scheduled installations. (They really make it hard to find huh?)

You can configure how often it will nag you (I re-configured it for 1440 minutes, which means I'll be asked once a day).

Oh, I almost forgot: this setting is only loaded when Windows starts, so a reboot is needed to effect it.

If you don't want to reboot, you can enable the setting right away by restarting the automatic updates service, or you can just go to Start -> Run -> Cmd, type in "gpupdate.exe /force" and hit ENTER. You should see the following if it is successful:

User Policy Refresh has completed.
Computer Policy Refresh has completed.

Note: This policy applies only when Automatic Updates is configured to perform updates. If the "Configure Automatic Updates" policy is disabled, this policy has no effect.

Finally, if you have Windows XP Home instead of Windows XP Pro, you will probably get the following message:

Windows cannot find 'gpedit.msc'. Make sure you typed the name correctly, and then try again. To search for a file, click the Start button, and then click Search.

 GPEDIT doesn't exist on Windows XP Home edition, since it's for Group Policy, a Windows XP Pro feature. However, you can set the key in the group policy area of your registry. Just download and double-click on the .reg file located here: aureboot.reg

By Brian Last updated: 1 July 2011, 12:57