Using the Pitt Software Update Service | Information Technology | University of Pittsburgh

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Using the Pitt Software Update Service


This help sheet explains how to use the University of Pittsburgh’s Software Update Service. The Pitt Software Update Service automatically provides critical updates and service packs for a wide range of Microsoft operating systems, Microsoft Office products, and Microsoft server products.

Why is it so important to install the latest Microsoft security updates and service packs? After a security vulnerability in Windows has been announced, new viruses begin to appear that are specifically designed to exploit that vulnerability. If you have not installed Microsoft's latest security updates, your computer or server is at greater risk of becoming infected. The Pitt Software Update Service installs both security updates (patches released on an as-needed basis to address a single security problem) and service packs (comprehensive, planned updates that correct multiple problems).

Advantages of Using the Service

You receive Windows and Office updates from the same source.

The Pitt Software Update Service automatically provides updates for both Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office. If you do not use the service, you will have to install updates yourself from both the Windows Update website and the Office Update website each time new updates are released.

You eliminate the need to constantly check for updates.

Using the Pitt Software Update Service means you do not have to check for updates each time Microsoft announces a new security vulnerability. Once you set up the service, it will continually identify new updates and install them on a daily or weekly schedule, depending upon how you configure the service. Pitt IT recommends that you select "Automatically download the updates, and install them on the schedule that I specify" and choose "Every day" from the drop-down box. Updates are also retrieved locally from the University's network, which means critical security updates are installed on your computer quickly and reliably.

You can update your desktop, laptop, or server.

The Pitt Software Update Service provides updates for the following Microsoft products:

Operating Systems
Windows 10 Family
Windows 8 Family
Windows Vista Family

Server Products
Windows Server 2012 Family
Windows Server 2008 Family
SQL Server

To determine which version of Windows you are using, click the Start menu and select My Computer. In the My Computer window, click the Help menu and select About Windows.

Configuring the Pitt Software Update Service (Windows)

  1. Launch the Software Download Service via My Pitt
  2. Download the Software Update Service.
  3. Once downloaded, double click the Pitt_Software_Update.exe file to launch the Pitt Software Update application. Note: Some users may see a "Security Warning" window. If you see this window, click Run.
  4. Click OK.
  5. The Software Updates Configuration window will open.
    Software Update Service screenshot 1

  6. Note: Your settings will also be displayed on the right-hand side of the window under the Current Settings heading. If you have not configured your computer to use the Software Update Service, the text under the Current Settings heading will read Your machine is NOT configured for Pitt Software Updates.
  7. Make sure the box next to Download updates from the University of Pittsburgh Software Update Service is checked. 
  8. In the Settings section, click the button next to Automatically download the updates, and install them on the schedule that I specify.
  9. Select Every day from the drop-down menu and then select the time of day you would like to have updates installed.
  10. Check the box next to Do not reboot if a user is logged on to the computer. Checking this box ensures the computer will not reboot if you or another user is logged on at the time that software updates are automatically downloaded. The software updates will not take effect until the user logs off and the computer can reboot.
  11. Click Apply to save and apply your settings.
  12. If your configuration was successful, a window will open with the text Your computer is now configured to receive updates from the Pitt Software Update Service. Click OK.
    Software Update Service screenshot 2

Receiving Updates

If you have selected the default setting, Automatically download the updates, and install them on the schedule that I specify, then your updates will be automatically downloaded and installed during the day and time you have specified. Pitt IT recommends that you use the default settings when configuring the service for your computer.

If you have selected Download the updates automatically and notify me when they are ready to be installed, the Pitt Software Update Service will download new updates automatically. You will be prompted with the following notice when they are ready to be installed.
Software Update Service screenshot 3

Click on the notice to review a list of the updates that have been downloaded. Check the updates that you wish to install and click the Install button.
Software Update Service screenshot 4

If you have selected Notify me before downloading any updates and notify me again before installing them on my computer, you will be notified before updates are downloaded onto your computer. Once you download the updates, you will then be prompted to install them. Check the updates that you wish to install and click the Install button.

Using Antivirus Software with the Pitt Software Update Service

The Pitt Software Update Service will help protect your computer against vulnerabilities in the Windows operating system, but it is not a replacement for the use of antivirus and anti-malware software. It is important that you continue to use antivirus and anti-malware software, and that you update the software frequently.