#1 By: Chris Hoffman, February 17th, 2014 06:40
Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/182817/htg-explains-why-does-windows-want-to-reboot-so-often/
If there’s one complaint nearly everyone seems to have about Windows, it’s that it wants to reboot so frequently. Whether it’s for Windows updates or just when installing, uninstalling, or updating software, Windows will often ask to reboot.
#2 By: Alistair Tudor, February 17th, 2014 11:09
Actually Windows can replace a file in use, but Microsoft chose not to use it. Raymond Chen explains here why: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/2008.11.windowsconfidential.aspx
I'd be interested to know how Linux handles this as it surely has the same problem as described in Chen's article?
#3 By: Rick P., February 17th, 2014 12:08
MS issues software updates on the 2nd Tuesday of every month so everyone knows when to expect them.
What's the big issue about taking a few minutes to update the system and reboot it if one has been fore warned that updating is due ??
#4 By: Alistair Tudor, February 17th, 2014 12:27
I Agree. To me it's not a big issue. My desktop is not a server and a few minutes downtime every month is hardly an issue. Especially now with Windows 8 giving me 3 days notice
#5 By: James Noord, February 17th, 2014 13:35
Simple really, Windows is inherently flawed by both a poor design and a legion userbase who is mor ethan willing to accept any remotely plausible answer concerning why presumably simple things are so obtuse in the windows world.
Bottom line the reason reboots are necessary is the security model (or lack thereof) of windows. Simply up until windows 7 and 8 (supposedly anyway) windows had a boiler plate security model. While the file system provides file level security, and the os does as well, the applications and developers of windows applications do not follow best practices and many applications require administrative access to install and use.
How this translates to rebooting is that the updates can not guarantee at any given time the context they (update software) is operating in, as the line beween administrator and users is somewhat vague. (this is why windows is so virus and malware porus)
Windows NT was supposed to allow updates without reboots. In fact OS/2 did that as well, and as a precursor to NT, the only remainin greason for a reboot is laziness on the part of developers and failure to motivate application developers to provide mechanisms to install theiur software without admin privileges.
#6 By: Don Gateley, February 17th, 2014 15:42
It couldn't be because of inept design, could it?
#7 By: John Chorley, February 18th, 2014 07:41
The main issue I have with Windows Updates is at one point it required 4 reboots, and each reboot took forever to load It would be nice if we had a choice to not restart our computer until we want like Linux does.
In my experience Linux reboots have been less painful simply because the boot time is faster and I don't have to wait for the "Configuring Updates" screen.
A word of caution. In the past I've had several computers break down because of me wanting to keep the system FULLY updated. They will break things they will give you a BSOD so only install the updates MS wants you to install, and leave the optional updates alone.
#8 By: John Chorley, February 18th, 2014 07:42
Windows 8 doesn't give me three days notice. It gives me about 1 days notice.
#9 By: Ringhalg , February 18th, 2014 08:14
In Windows 8.1, I get 3 days notice.
I want an option to Restart or Shutdown and not update.
#10 By: Xhi, February 18th, 2014 12:45
People who make comments like that have probably never written or designed a program.
#11 By: Robin Hahn, February 18th, 2014 15:10
For the desktop user, both OSes need rebooting at some point. It's just that the Windows reboot is a much longer, drawn-out process (on either my i3/16 gig RAM or i7/8 gig RAM, no difference in Windows update reboot times) vs Linux, which just shuts down and boots normally.
So it's not just the reboot itself which is annoying: it's the much, much longer time it takes. And for those who say: "well, just go and do what you need to do, and let Windows shut the computer down when it's ready"... sorry, been burnt by that, literally. The system did NOT shut down properly, I had left for work and came back in the evening to find the system hung and hot. This is a fire-danger.
Even if the system were to behave itself during shutdown, when you boot up again after an update, you might as well go make yourself a cuppa: depending on the update, it can take quite a while to finish.
And don't even get me started on the default behaviour - before you change the settings to something more civilised - of Windows to just reboot regardless of what you might be doing and so you end up losing a whole bunch of work. That to me is a far more critical behavioural flaw than if it just - by default - left it to the user's discretion (as Linux does, a far more polite, considerate approach) to reboot when the user has finished what she was doing. It's behaviour like that, and annoyances like having a fully legitimate, purchased copy of Win7 suddenly falling over due to a false-positive WGA process that makes me infinitely grateful for Mint.
Oh, I still use Windows... but it now runs in a VM (whichever flavour I want, XP or Win7, never going with that Win8 nonsense) and since most of the updates are security-focused, I don't bother updating at all. And don't run AV in those VMs... if for some reason the install gets corrupted, restoring from a VirtualBox appliance is trivial: WinXP takes about 1 minute!
#12 By: Don Gateley, February 18th, 2014 16:55
It's 40+ years of doing so that qualifies me to make the comment.
#13 By: Xhi, February 18th, 2014 20:50
Got you beat by 10+ years and I never wrote a perfect program certainly not one with a very dynamic operating system. Although I have written Operating Systems.
#14 By: Don Gateley, February 19th, 2014 03:06
@xhi: In all honesty I've got to say that I've written quite a number of
them. Decisions made at the starting point make all the difference in the
world, I've found, and that's where I think MS, and Gates himself, showed
themselves to be inept.
Do you still code and debug? I'm hard at it right now (in my 70th year)
for a product I hope to bring to market and find to my chagrin that I am
far more error prone and far less adept at debugging with many more fix
iterations than I remember when I was last active. I just hate it when
To be fair to myself, the platform I have to use is unbelievably quirky and
most of my bugs relate to its quirks. Damn near all of them now that I
think about it. Perfection is very demanding, as well.
#15 By: Rick P., February 19th, 2014 11:30
#16 By: Xhi, February 19th, 2014 12:24
I am retired. In my 76th year. Took my first programming course in 1962. Developed and sold College Administrative Software after retiring from the Army having worked on the beginning stages of the ARPANET, long before Al Gore invented the Internet, and developed programs for the World Wide Military Command and Control System (WWMCCS). Pronounced Wimix. So I am familiar with the difficulties in developing Worldwide systems to be used by a diverse set of users with differing requirements and keeping them safe and secure.
Having developed my original Academic Software for a diverse set of various manufacturers mini-computers, DEC, Wang, Data General, Prime to name a few, each time reprogramming it to these different Operating Systems, I was thrilled and will ever be grateful for Bill Gates development of a single Operating System for the new Personal Computers. I take great offense at those who do not appreciate this unifying accomplishment in our field, those who could not do a better job if they even understood the complexity.
#17 By: Rick P., February 19th, 2014 12:40
I AGREE TOTALLY with @xhi Above.
#18 By: system, February 27th, 2014 06:40
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