How essential are the security patches in Windows updates? Are they optional to antivirus alternative?
Windows updates are extremely important and should be installed in addition to using solid security software. Microsoft releases these because a vulnerability has been found, and not just for their own amusement :)
if you use microsoft security essentials then security patch updates are more than essential; sometime windows will force you to install very important patch. Patches are not very important for Windows to work properly, but they are important in order to prevent unauthorized users from exploiting flaws in Microsoft software and thus to do bad things such as to access your computer.
Thanks. I understand
When it concerns security, updates and antivirus, antimalware, and a firewall work in conjunction with each other to help keep your computer as secure as possible. All of this would be only be as safe as the user, so safe web browsing and downloading habits would be best.
All of this is similar to the security for the home; if the doors and windows need to be updated or fixed for safety and security, would you keep them as is and use an alarm system instead? An alarm may notify of an attempted break in or after someone breaks into your home, but fixing the windows and doors may have prevented it from happening in the first place.
This holds true for any operating system, including Mac OSX and Linux. Just because "break ins" don't happen often does not make it safer, just less likely to happen. Just because it hasn't happened or it's less likely to happen doesn't mean that at some point it won't happen, so it would be best to take necessary general steps to prevent and protect against the potential occurrences.
Just as they're rated: the ones marked "Critical" are critical, the "Important" ones are important etc.
Thanks. Please tell , that if windows updates list in windows xp , does not show the category of importance of updates , then how to know?
Every patch has a number associated with a Knowledge Base article (hence the "KB" prefix). You can Google that number to find the article, which will explain in detail what the patch does, and also how important it is.
I'm not sure why you are asking the question, but my own take on updates is to install all bug fixes and security updates. As for feature updates, I exercise some discretion as some "features" will not benefit me (e.g. smartcard support) or may even be a hassle (Desktop Search 4.0).
Thanks. Nice reply! I asked because , it is preferable not to install "Not very important" patches and updates to avoid unnecessary hogging of data speed , while doing for eg., video meeting
Like I said, my own preference is to install any updates relating to security, but to check the feature upgrades on a case-by-case basis. One could generally criticise an industry which makes systems bigger and slower as time goes on, but we simply have to accept that's how things are.