If you’ve read my previous article, you already know what I’m talking about here. Microsoft periodically releases updates for its Windows Operating System. What this means, is that you have to periodically visit Microsoft’s Windows Update (or Microsoft Update as it is now known) site to download the latest updates and patches.
This might be nice and dandy, but what happens if you want to re-install these on a number of machines? You don’t want to waste your precious time on downloading everything again. Not to mention the bandwidth consumption.
This is where AutoPatcher comes in handy. AutoPatcher is a free online utility that will allow you to download all the latest updates for your Windows operating system since the last ‘service pack’ release. AutoPatcher currently supports Windows 2000 through to Windows Vista, in addition to the 64bit versions of Windows XP and 2003. AutoPatcher even supports your Office installation, versions XP through 2007.
That’s not all; AutoPatcher has a number of nifty little installs, including (but limited to) browser toolbars, tweak utilities and power toys. It even has add-ons for Office; one I like in particular is the ‘Calendar Printing Assistant for Microsoft Outlook 2007’ - shown in Image 1 below.
What you need to do is first run AutoPatcher’s Updater utility which will guide you through the download process - Images 2 and 3 below. After downloading all the updates needed for your Windows/Office version, you run AutoPatcher, will check your system for the updates/patches it requires and will outline them in a list of all available updates - Image 4 below. You can select or de-select updates/patches according to your preference and then start the installation process.
One word of caution though, AutoPatcher will sometimes detect updates/patches as not installed when they are. I think this is a bug and should be fixed. However, reapplying the same udpate/patch again should do your system no harm.
To install the udpates and patches on additional Windows machines, make sure you have downloaded the updates for that version of Windows and simply copy everything to the new machine and run AutoPatcher. If you have concerns for hard disk space, simply delete everything when you’re done.