How to Force Automatic Updates 2.2 to Perform a Detection Cycle

This article was previously published under Q326693
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By default, the Automatic Updates version 2.2 client performs a detection cycle one time every 17 to 22 hours. This article describes how to force the Automatic Updates 2.2 client to perform a detection cycle.
To force the Automatic Updates client to perform a detection cycle:
  1. Run Gpedit.msc to configure the Software Update Services server location by using Local Group Policy. Configure only the "Specify intranet Microsoft update service location" policy. Do not configure the "Configure Automatic Updates" policy. This permits you to turn the service on or off by using Control Panel.

    NOTE: If the policy settings are applied from the domain level, the settings cannot be overwritten by Local Group Policy
  2. If the client is Microsoft Windows 2000-based, start the Automatic Updates tool in Control Panel. If the client is Microsoft Windows XP-based, right-click My Computer, click Properties, and then click the Automatic Updates tab.
  3. Set the options the way that you want them. Click to clear the Enable Automatic Updates check box, and then click Apply.
  4. Wait a few seconds, click to select the Enable Automatic Updates check box, and then click OK. This forces a detection cycle.
After you follow these steps, a detection cycle should occur in approximately 5 to 10 minutes. To verify that a detection cycle occurs:
  1. Start Regedit.exe. Locate and then click the following registry key:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\WindowsUpdate\Auto Update
  2. Verify that the AUState value is 2.
  3. View the DetectionStartTime value. It should have a time stamp of approximately the time that you last used Auto Updates.
  4. If you watch the DetectionStartTime value, the value is deleted after the detection cycle occurs. This may take from 5 to 10 minutes, but typically occurs within 5 minutes.
  5. View the log for entries that indicate contact with the Software Update Services server.
Important The procedures in this article work only if the Automatic Updates client has been configured manually. The procedures do not work if the Automatic Updates client has been configured by using a Group Policy setting. If the client has been configured by using a policy setting, you cannot change the client's settings without first removing the client from the organizational unit that has the policy applied.

Article ID: 326693 - Last Review: 12/07/2015 11:58:58 - Revision: 4.2

Microsoft Software Update Services 1.0

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