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Most often, you'll want to take the updates offered by Windows Update. If you want to delay or completely avoid an update, I'll show you how to hide it.
The Windows Update notification INSISTS that I must install Internet Explorer 9. Sure, I can ignore it, but the notification just won't go away.
Actually, it can.
In fact, you can tell Windows Update to ignore any of the updates that it offers you.
Naturally, it's not obvious, but the option is there. I'll show you how.
Start the Windows Update tool. In Windows 7, that'll be on the All Programs menu as Windows Update. You can also visit the Windows Update site in older versions of Windows.
As you can see, the example machine that I've selected is in need of some updates - five important ones and one optional.
Click on the "Important Updates" item to see the list:
Internet Explorer 9 is shown and checked for installation.
If you want to avoid Internet Explorer for now, you'll uncheck it. However, it'll still remain present in the list.
Uncheck the item that you don't want - Internet Explorer 9, in this case - but then, right-click on it as well:
Click Hide Update. (The shield icon indicates that you may need to confirm a UAC prompt.)
As you can see, the item turns grey.
In this case, I'll take all of the other updates. After a reboot (or two [or three]), the list of important updates has changed:
As you can see, Windows Update has decided that I need Service Pack 1, but Internet Explorer is nowhere to be seen. And this machine still has IE8.
So if the update is hidden, what happens if you change your mind? How do you get Internet Explorer 9?
Back on the Windows Update screen is our hint:
Click Restore hidden updates and you'll be presented with a list of all the hidden Windows Updates:
Apparently, I've been here before and hidden all of the language pack updates that I don't need.
Check the items that you want to un-hide and click Restore. They'll be placed back in the list of available updates for you to select and then presumably install.
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