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Enabling Microsoft Update to keep Office 2003, Office XP, and other Microsoft Products Secure and Up-To-Date

Enabling Microsoft Update to keep Office 2003, Office XP, and other Microsoft Products Secure and Up-To-Date

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Hi Folks –

We want to remind everyone that enabling Microsoft Update and keeping your computer up-to-date will give you the best possible experience with Windows.   Are you wondering about the difference between Windows Update and Microsoft Update?  Windows Update offers updates for Windows and drivers for your hardware and devices.  Microsoft Update offers updates for Windows, other Microsoft software, and drivers.  So, if you have any version of Microsoft Office installed on your computer, or any other Microsoft software, then you should enable Microsoft Update. Otherwise you won’t even get security updates for your other Microsoft software.


Enabling Microsoft Update gives you updates for more software, it doesn’t change how you get updates.  If you use Windows XP, you can find the updates through Automatic Updates or by visiting the Microsoft Update Website.  If you use Windows Vista, you can find all available updates in the Windows Update control panel.


So, you’re probably wondering how to "opt-in", or "enable" Microsoft Update, or check your configuration and stay up to date.  It’s very easy, just follow the steps below:


1.  To enable Microsoft Update and verify your update settings, click here:

Note:   If you’re a Windows Vista user, this link will take you to the Windows Update Control Panel “applet”.


A.  On Vista, on the Control Panel App, if you have not enabled Microsoft Update your Control Panel Windows Update screen will look like this and you will see the Get updates for more products link in a yellow highlighted area.  Simply click Get updates for more products, to start the Microsoft Update install and scan process: 




B.  On Windows XP, clicking the above link will take you to the Microsoft Update page.  If Microsoft Update is already enabled you can check to see if you need updates for Windows, other Microsoft programs, or your hardware of devices from this page.  If you have not yet enabled Microsoft update, you will see this page.  Simply click Start now and follow the steps to install Microsoft Update.






2.       Regardless of your Windows version or your automatic update settings, you can always check for new updates and new software available through Microsoft Update.  If you are a Windows XP user click here: If you are a Windows Vista user (or Windows 7 Beta user), you can open the Start menu, click All Programs, and then click Windows Update.



Thank you!

The MU Team

  • Hi all.

    What about new beta program for MU? I listen that you invite some MU CTP program member to new beta program but I don`t see new nomination survey & download section is not available for me too.

    Best regards


  • Hello,

    I'd like to activate microsoft update, but I need to  automate this process on windows XP pro. Does anybody know about a "microsoft update agent" which is possible available? So that I don't need to click to activate microsoft update (not windows update) over internet explorer. Just setup.exe and go.. like windowsupdateagent30-x86.exe...

    best regards


  • Our friends on the Microsoft Update team have posted a reminder on their team blog that opting in to

  • Hi MU Team!

    Is there any reason why Microsoft Update isn't on by default? Why do we have Windows Update and Microsoft Update? Surely everyone would be more secure if there was only MU?

    Thanks, Alex.

  • Hi folks, I'd like to give some feedback on a reproducable problem which I believe is a bug in Windows Update.

    Basically, everytime I do a complete system restore in Vista (with or without SP1), then Windows Update looses it's settings for other product updates.

    Yes, Windows Update works fine for Microsoft products - but somehow it looses the fact that I also opted in to receive updates for Office and other products!

    Also, when I click the lightbulb in Windows update to opt-in .. I get sent to the windows update site and receive and error. The KB to fix the error suggestions I delete the software distribution directory in windows and restart the windows update service. This of course deletes all my history of windows update but STILL the same problem exists!

    I've been able to repro this 3 times now. The solution to get it fixed - after I spoke to PSS - was to reset internet explorer and delete all my cookies and settings. Now I do NOT want to do this a 3rd time -- all of my passwords and settings are in my cookies and I do not want to have to reauthenticate on 15+ websites etc.

    Please can you look into this -- it's simple to repro -- just opt in to all updates, complete backup and complete restore -- and see that the Opt in for other products feature is broken!

    Alternatively, is there any way I can identify just the cookies that WU uses in my IE cookies so I can fix this?

    Many thanks...

  • Thanks for sharing your feedback!

  • Like Matthias, I would also like to know if there is a way to configure this without visiting the website.  Can this be accomplished with a reg tweak or replacing WU related files?  Or at least a stand-alone installer?

  • This thread is priceless, I'm glad I found it. Happy returns!

  • Yeah I'm glad I found it too. Good to know useful stuff is always there when you need it!

  • How can I enable Microsoft Update by using Group Policy?

  • How can I enable Microsoft Update by using Group Policy?

  • How can I enable Microsoft Update by using Group Policy's?

  • Thank you for useful information, my friend

  • something nice to have Office 2003 and Office XP updateleri The effort was good in the hands of expression thanks to the health

  • I have installed windows its gr8 man but facing problem while updating office 2003 from net it downloads packages but dosen't installs them plz help



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