Q: I received the following notification on the screen of my Windows 10 computer: “Your device will restart to update outside of active hours. Leave it on and plugged in. Open Settings to adjust your active hours and whether you want reminders.” There is then a place for me to click either “Restart now” or “OK.”
My questions are:
1. Upon receipt of this notification, is there a way I can find out WHAT update is ready to start?
2. Is there a way to stop or cancel the pending update if I decide I don’t want that update?
— Richard Beckenbaugh
A: Yes, and yes.
Go to the Start button and click on Settings. Next click on “Update and Security.” The display that opens will show you all pending updates and will offer a button that will take you to more details about just what is in the update.
The Update and Security utility also offers controls over when updates will take place.
As for canceling updates altogether, Windows 10’s Update and Security utility allows you to pause them but not indefinitely. That’s in the interest of making sure Windows computers are as secure as Microsoft is able to make the operating system with its not-infrequent security updates. Warding off hackers trying to exploit newly discovered OS vulnerabilities is an ongoing game of whack-a-mole.
If you want to permanently disable updates, you’ll need to dive into the Windows Registry or the Group Policy Editor. Detailed steps for doing so are here: st.news/stop-updates
That said, I have two cautions I feel duty-bound to offer. First, editing the Windows Registry and using the Group Policy Editor can be tricky for inexperienced users and may result in unintended consequences. Secondly, I really advise against declining OS system updates unless there’s a specific issue you’re aware of that will impact your computer. Many of the updates provide important security patches.
Q: I’ve got a wireless connection question. In June I kept Comcast for the internet but dropped it for TV. I’ve switched to YouTubeTV, which comes in wirelessly via our home network.
I’m wondering if you can explain why the TV displays a download speed between as low as 23 Mbps to as high as 50 Mbps. By comparison my iPhone X, in the same room and on the same Wi-Fi network, consistently displays 50 Mbps and higher. The TV reports signal strength as excellent, but download speed only as good, which can result in latency when Mbps is in the low 20s.
Of course, Ethernet would be way faster (I’m paying Comcast for 200 Mbps and get it on my hard-wired desktop), but the cost of running Ethernet from our cable modem to the TV will be about $500.
Any ideas to explain — and hopefully overcome — the download discrepancy between cell and TV?
— Peter Lewis
A: The download speed depends on the devices at both ends of the transmission. If, for example, you have an older laptop that supports 802.11g, it will never get the same download speed from an 802.11ac router as will a newer computer that supports 802.11ac. The older computer will max out at the maximum speed of 802.11g.
So I’m guessing that your TV supports an older Wi-Fi standard.
There are, of course, a host of other factors that can affect Wi-Fi performance, including especially distance of the device from the Wi-Fi router. It’s also possible that the Wi-Fi client in the TV is being impacted by interference from something inside (or outside) the TV.
The bottom line: The one-time cost of running Ethernet to your TV might be worth it if you find yourself frequently irritated by latency issues.