If you have Windows 10 and you haven’t yet received the Windows 10 Anniversary Update (Win 10 AU), you may be in for a nasty surprise soon when you turn on your PC. You may find it takes a long time to start. I know someone who had to wait two hours for his computer to startup when Microsoft was doing the automatic update. Two of my four Windows 10 PCs have gotten the update so far. One took nearly a half hour to boot and the other took an hour and a quarter.
After the update is installed, your boot times will probably be normal, but when the update is being installed, it can take hours before it boots. This could be a very nasty surprise if you need your computer quickly but can’t logon.
There’s no way to know when you’ll get the update. Two of my four PCs have not yet gotten it. They could get it tonight or maybe not for weeks. When it’s time, your computer will be scheduled for an update – in my case it was 3:30am the next day. If your computer is on at that time, the update will take place. If the computer is not on, then it will happen the next time to start it. That’s when you get the nasty surprise that you won’t have access to your computer for up to an hour or two, depending on how fast your computer is.
The following shows you ways to control when your Windows 10 PC restarts itself for any update, not just Window 10 AU.
Ways to avoid a long start time for the Windows 10 AU
The Windows Update panel provides ways to control when the update will occur. To get to the Windows Update panel, left clicking the Start button, then selecting Settings, and then selecting Updates & Security in the popup panel. It’s the last entry, so if you have a small screen, you may have to scroll down to it.
- Tell Windows to notify you before doing any updates. Click Advanced Options in the Windows Update panel. Click the box below Choose how updates are installed. The default is Automatic. If you change it to Notify to restart, then it will notify you before doing a reboot for an upgrade.
- Don’t turn your computer off. The update will probably happen at night and shouldn’t affect your daytime access to the computer (I haven’t yet tried this to confirm it).
- Defer upgrades (available only on Windows 10 Professional, Enterprise, and Education editions, This iss not available for Windows 10 Home). Under Advanced Options, put a check mark next to Defer upgrades. This allows you to defer all non-security upgrades for several months.
- Schedule a specific restart time. This is only available if Windows is ready to install an update. To find out whether an update is scheduled, go to the Windows Update panel and click Check for updates. It will search for updates and then either display “Your device is up to date.” or it will list updates that are scheduled.
If you see A restart has been scheduled, you will also see the following:
This gives you the option of either allowing it to restart automatically at the scheduled time, or specifying your own restart time, or making it restart immediately. It’s not possible to defer the restart.for more than 24 hours.
If Windows 10 AU is scheduled to install, then you’ll see the following under the updates: “Feature update to Windows 10, version 1607”. Currently this is the only one I’m aware of that might cause your computer to take several hours to reboot.