Windows 10: Update Your Operating System

The University pushes out new Windows 10 branch updates to all University-owned computers late Fall and to pilot devices late Spring on an annual basis. This article describes the two methods for installing the update. Note: If you are off campus, you will have to use Virtual Private Networking (VPN)

If you are using Windows 7, contact Technology Help.

The timing of the update process

From start to finish, the installation process can take up to 3 hours. Because it occurs in the background, you can continue to use your computer. However, at the end of the process, you will be prompted to restart your computer; plan at least 30 minutes for the restart.

Each branch update will have a deadline by which it must be completed.

Note: If the deadline has passed, the update will automatically install and automatically restart your computer, potentially resulting in data loss. To prevent this, follow the instructions below ahead of the deadline.

Updating through the system tray

Once the update has been pushed to your computer, the system tray will contain a new icon. 

  1. Click Show hidden icons  in the system tray in the Windows Taskbar (lower-right-hand corner of the screen).
  2. Click the small icon of a drive with a red x next to it (KB0025692-drive-icon-with-x-20200103.pngx), then select View Required Software.
    Show hidden icons pop-up menu; drive icon with x selected with view required software pop-up text
    The update screen appears. 
  3. Choose one of the three update options.
    • Right now (recommended)
      • Starts the update right away. The installation can take up to 3 hours.
      • Requires a restart. The restart can take up to 30 minutes.
        • If you are able to restart right away, select Restart my computer automatically if needed checkbox.
        • If you are NOT able to restart right away, you will have to manually restart the computer when the installation has completed. (See Step 4 below.)
    • Outside my business hours
    • Snooze and remind me
      • Prompts you again with all of these options at a later date.
      • If you snooze the update past the deadline, the update will start at the time of the deadline and automatically restart during the maintenance window, regardless of what is running on the computer at that time. 
        • All unsaved data will be lost.
  4. When the installation has completed:
    • If you selected Restart my computer automatically if needed, the computer will restart and the update will be complete. You can return to your work.
    • If you did NOT select to restart automatically, the Restart your computer dialog box appears listing 2 restart options.
  5. Choose one of the options.
    KB0025692-restart-your-computer-dialog-box.pngx
    • Restart now (recommended)
      • Restarts the computer right away. The restart can take up to 30 minutes
        • Save your work to avoid losing data.
        • Notify users logged on to the computer that they should log off immediately for a pending restart.
    • Snooze and remind me again in 1, 2 or 4 hours:
      • Prompts you again after 1, 2 or 4 hours
      • If you snooze the restart past the deadline, it will automatically restart during the maintenance window
        • All unsaved data will be lost.

Updating through Software Center

  1. Open Software Center.
    1. Click on the Windows Menu, also known as the Start Menu.
    2. Search for "Software Center".
    3. Click the Software Center app.
  2. Click Updates. The Update details appear.
    1. You should see Feature update to Windows 10 (business editions), version xxxx, en-us showing a Status with your installation deadline.
      • If the deadline has passed, the status will say past due.
    2. If no update listed, verify whether the update has been installed.
  3. Double-click the update to open it.
    Feature update to Windows 10; with Install and Schedule buttons; text: Install the latest update for Windows 10 ; Status highlighted
  4. Click Install. A confirmation dialog box opens.
  5. Click Install. The update will begin to download and install.
    KB0025692-software-center-updates-feature-update-to-windows-install-install-20200103.pngx
    Once the installation completes:
  6. Click Restart on the update page. A dialog box opens saying "Your computer must be restarted."
    1. Save your work to avoid losing data.
    2. Notify users logged on to the computer that they should log off immediately for a pending restart. 
  7. Click Restart OR 
    • Click Cancel if you need to restart later.
      • If you do not restart your computer before the deadline, it will automatically restart during the maintenance window
      • All unsaved data will be lost.
        KB0025692-software-center-updates-feature-update-to-windows-restart-20200106.pngx

Once the computer has restarted the update will be complete.

Verifying whether the update has been installed

Follow the instructions in Which Windows operating system am I running? to check the Version of your computer.

  • If the version is the same or newer than the version listed in Software Center, you have already updated and do NOT need to install the update.
  • If the version is older than the version listed in Software Center, you will need to install the update. 
    • If you are unable to update, contact Technology Help.
    • If you are having trouble updating Windows 10 on your personal device, please visit a local repair store.

Resetting your default applications if necessary

Feature updates will sometimes reset default application preferences. You can change them back as follows:

  1. Click on the Windows Menu, also known as the Start Menu.
  2. Type Settings.
  3. Click the Settings App. The Windows Settings interface appears.
  4. Double-click Apps. The Settings Apps window appears with an Apps menu on the left. 
  5. Select the Default Apps menu option. A list of the default apps appears.
  6. Click an app. The Choose an App pop-up menu appears. 
  7. Select a new app from the list. The Default Apps list refreshes.