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Whenever I install the .NET framework in a new Windows installation there is a huge number of updates to download from Windows Update.

I go through the Windows Update process once, reboot, then find there's more. Install every update again, reboot - oh wait, there's still more .NET framework updates. Install them, reboot again - but wait, there's still more! After the third time it seems to be done, but it's a huge waste of time, because it downloads about 3x the size of the original installer and has to ngen everything for every update as well. This is on XP x64, but I'm pretty sure even on Windows 7 there are at least 2 "rounds" of updates, each as big as the original installer.

Where could I download the complete installer that would install the latest version of .NET framework with all critical updates released at that time without any further downloads? (Even if it's "unofficial".)

  • As far as I know there is not one, you just have to endure the pain of .Net Hell. If you find one please share, you will be a Windows hero for sure. – Moab May 9 '12 at 15:29
  • This is about as close as it gets for 3.5, but there will still be some security updates and rollups to install...microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=25150 – Moab May 9 '12 at 15:34
  • Thanks, I already was using that one. There are still 2-3 rounds of updates after it. – EMP May 10 '12 at 4:07
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You can install the initial version of .NET and then try installing .NET via Microsoft Update with the command line tool WuInstall and its rebootcycle option:

WuInstall /install /rebootcycle

It should install all needed updates cumulative and reboot and the install again, until no more reboots are needed. Everything completely unattended. Afterwards, .NET should be on the latest version.

Maybe you also add a /match ".NET" but to only get .NET updates

  • WuInstall looks interesting, +1. The /download_to_directory might actually be better - maybe I can get it to download the latest installer and then install just that. Worth noting that both /rebootcycle and /download_to_directory are only in the paid version, which is $390 (minimum). – EMP May 19 '12 at 0:27

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