Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there a way in XP Pro SP3 to have the Windows Update service stopped after leaving the Windows Update website?

I have opted out of the Microsoft Update site for updates due to problems experienced with doing updates there - i.e. long scans, high CPU utilization, failed installs. Have turned off Auto Updates to stop the frequent scans and now do updates manually via Windows Update site.

Going to the Windows Update site via IE8 starts the wuauclt.exe service, which is as expected, however, when the site and IE8 are shut down, the wuauclt.exe service continues to be listed as an active service in Task Manager. Due to past experience where this service used large amounts of CPU resources and hanging the system, I would like to have this service stopped after I leave the update site. I now do this via Task Manager, but would like to know if there is any way to have this done automatically.

share|improve this question

I have found that the best compromise is to change Automatic Updates to "Notify me, but don't automatically download or install them." That minimizes the performance hit, and lets me control when to do the updates (I usually do them about once a month.) This also lets me check the "don't tell me about this update" for those that I don't care about.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.