Samsung will stop blocking Microsoft software updates 'within a few days'

The Korean company will no longer block Microsoft's update service from running on PCs it sells

Samsung Ativ Book 9 (4)

Samsung Ativ Book 9 (4)

Owners of Samsung PCs will begin receiving automatic software updates from Microsoft again soon, after Samsung said it will end its practice of blocking automatic Windows Updates on its computers.

"We will be issuing a patch through the Samsung Software Update notification process to revert back to the recommended automatic Windows Update settings within a few days," Samsung said Friday.

It said it was committed to providing "a trustworthy user experience" and that it values its partnership with Microsoft.

It's a quick turnaround from earlier this week, when researcher Patrick Barker reported on an auspiciously named application called "Disable_Windowsupdate.exe" that runs on Samsung PCs as part of the company's SW Update service. As its name implies, the program disables automatic updates from Microsoft's software patching service, and requires people to manually install individual patches if they want to update their PC.

The Samsung program runs whenever a PC with it installed starts up, which means anyone who re-enables automatic updates will have them disabled again when the computer gets rebooted. It didn't come pre-installed, but users would want to install the SW Update app that installs it so that they can receive driver updates from Samsung.

At the time this came to light, a Samsung support representative told Barker that the service was needed to prevent Windows Update from installing default drivers that would break features like USB 3.0 ports. Moreover, the company said in a subsequent statement that it wasn't preventing Windows users from receiving updates, it was just allowing them to choose what updates they installed and when.

Microsoft said that it doesn't recommend anyone disable automatic Windows updates, since they provide users with up-to-date security patches that are needed to protect computers. At the time, the Windows maker said that it was in touch with Samsung about the issue. Now, it seems Microsoft has prevailed.

Anyone who hasn't already uninstalled SW Update will have their Windows Update settings reverted to apply updates automatically when the company patches its service, just as Microsoft recommends.

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Tags securityMicrosoftpatch managementoperating systemssoftwareWindowsSamsung Electronics

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Blair Hanley Frank

IDG News Service
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