Updates are software changes issued by the platform or application vendor. Most of the time they are free and contain bug fixes, security fixes, and occasionally new functionality. But unfortunately, an update can introduce new bugs and/or new security holes. Therein lies the rub. Certainly if you install an update you will be improving the associated software, but you might also break it in unexpected ways.
Before installing any update, make sure your backups are current. It is best if your backup strategy includes creation of system image backups, but at a minimum, be sure your file backups are current.
In general, it is best to not install updates the moment they become available and to instead wait a few days or weeks for any unintended consequences to be found and resolved. The one exception to this guideline is if the update closes a critical security hole.
When you get an update notification, make sure it is legitimate. If it comes from a major vendor such as Microsoft or Apple or from a vendor whose software you have installed on your device, you can be fairly certain it is legitimate. If you aren’t sure, Google the update reference number and read the resulting information.
As I discussed in a previous blog, Microsoft is ending support for Windows 7 on January 14th 2020 and will therefore cease issuing updates for that version of Windows. Therefore, it is imperative that you either upgrade to Windows 10 or take the opportunity to purchase a new computer to replace it.