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A company windows PC can slow down from time to time. Antivirus, windows update, etc... How can a user detect that the currently a major (long) win update is being installed? A PC may be super slow and a user is desperately trying to find out the cause and after 30 min sees win update restart prompt and the cause is now clear. (it was not antivirus).

Is there a way to know win update is running? (in general (e.g., on all win XP or Win7 or Win8)

Consier a case when the user does not have admin rights. (company default these days)

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Press ctrl+alt+delete and click start task manager. Show processes from all users, then list by CPU usage. You will often see trustedinstaller.exe or msiexec.exe as processes running with high cpu usage when anything is being installed, windows updates or otherwise. This way you can see if your antivirus is updating as well as it'll show in the list as using CPU. The filename will differ between anti virus.

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Whenever Windows update is downloading or installing an update, there should be an icon in the notification area in the botton-right of your screen. If you have administrator privileges, you can set your updates to ask you before downloading or ask you before installing so you're completely certain when the install happens.

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This notification can be hidden on a corporate system – Dave M Jan 28 '13 at 21:45

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