A Microsoft MVP learned while providing technical assistance to a Samsung PC user that the South-Korean company’s SW Update service deliberately disables Microsoft Windows updates.
Patrick Barker, an expert in troubleshooting and debugging MS Windows, found that some Samsung PCs and laptops actively disable Windows Update on reboot. Barker learned about the issue, which may compromise the security of devices, while helping a Windows 8.1 user who reported a WU issue. According to that person, Windows Updates were disabled “randomly” on every reboot.
Barker used Auditpol and did some tweaks in the registries to learn that an .exe file called Disable_Windowsupdate.exe ran on every reboot and turned off the precious updates. Barker also learned that the file was part of the Samsung’s SW Update software.
The expert explained that SW Update is an OEM updating software that keeps drivers and other software updated on Samsung devices. But SW Update is the only OEM updater to actively switch off Windows Updates.
Samsung update tool may disable Windows Updates on all Samsung devices that run Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 and 8, but the problem was spotted for Windows 8.1. Moreover, Disable_Windows.exe can be downloaded separately from the manufacturer’s website as a ZIP file.
Microsoft cautions that disabling updates may expose computers to malicious software and cyberattacks. WU provide users with security patches and tweaks that keep machines out of the harm’s way.
Unfortunately, the issue with Windows Updates on some Samsung devices cannot be resolved by users. Barker said that he couldn’t properly uninstall the application. He tried to remove it from Add/Remove list but on restart it kept resuming its disruptive work. As Samsung’s update suite was still active, the offending file continued to run from the Samsung Folder.
But the issue had been previously reported by at least one user. A couple of months ago, a Samsung tablet user said that Windows Updates refused to run on the device and he believed that Samsung had something to do with it.
As of now, we do not know what motives Samsung may have to turn off the OS updates. And the company has been very secretive about it. Experts recommend that you should install a very good security software suite if you have a Samsung machine which seemingly disables Windows Updates by default.
On Wednesday at about 17:20 EST, Samsung said that its technicians and Microsoft staffers were looking into Mr. Barker’s claims that Windows 8.1 updates are deliberately disabled on the company’s computers.
Image Source: All About Samsung