How to Check for XP Windows Updates

By Editorial Team

Updated July 21, 2017

Windows Update makes it incredibly simple to receive new updates for your Windows XP operating system. These updates can range from new versions of programs, to patches and fixes for existing versions of programs. Windows Update automatically downloads these updates into your computer, but sometimes people like to see what is being downloaded. You can set your computer to tell you about existing updates, and also find them online yourself.

Windows Updates

Connect to the Internet. You have to have an open Internet connection, so that Windows Update can access the main Microsoft web site and transfer updates back to your computer.

Open the "Start "menu in the bottom left corner of your screen. Click "Control Panel" to open the "Control Panel" window.

Look for "Automatic Updates" in the Control Panel, and click it to open up the "Automatic Updates" window. There will be a list of options for how Windows should process XP updates.

Look at the list of options in the Automatic Updates window. The recommended setting is for it to be entirely automatic, but you can click "Notify me, but don't automatically download or install them," to have your computer tell you when updates are available. This allows you to decide which updates to install and which to ignore.

Open up your web browser, and go to the Windows Update web site. Here, you can find a list of all the possible Windows XP updates. Click the updates you'd like to download, and press the "Install Updates" button. These updates should go into your Windows Update on their own, but some people prefer this method.