Windows Updates Best Practices for Dental Offices

Windows Updates Prevent But Can Create Bugs

Windows updates are an important part of a functional network, that said sometimes they need to be vetted.  Some updates in a dental setting come with bugs that may slow down or halt operations altogether. Trusting your IT provider to run updates is an important way to prevent installations that may bog down your network.  That said, you should be aware of how that process works and ask for confirmation that there is a plan in place to address your updates on a regular basis.  While we can't speak for all IT companies, we can give you a glimpse behind the curtain and share how we run this process for our clients.

Windows Updates Darkhorse Style

Proactive approaches prevent problems before they arise, that is our philosophy and as such we implemented a system for all clients when it comes to Windows updates.  When a practice engages with Darkhorse Tech, we install our clients on their systems.  The clients allow us to manually remote into their systems to provide top level tech support.  Once installed, our Agent allows us to examine details of our client's system without ever having to manually connect to them.   It also allows us to schedule windows update directly to their computers.

A key step in this process is to download the updates to our secure systems, examine them and approve the ones that are both safe and applicable to our clients.  We utilize a program called Automate, which allows us to schedule connection and update to computers without user interaction. These updates are usually scheduled after hours on a Saturday or Sunday, typically in the early AM so it does not impact business operation.

Normal Updates Include:

  • Microsoft Operating System (Windows 10, 11, 7, ect) updates
  • Recommended Driver updates (Drivers are small programs that allow your computer to use your internal devices like your graphics card)
  • Firmware Updates (hard coded commands that enable your internal system to utilize it's components, for example it tells the motherboard how to communicate with your processor, ram, or hard drive)

Benefits of The Darkhorse Approach

A successful update process launched from Automate will enable your system to be updated on a regular basis and will cut down on troubleshooting and resolution times for any issues that may occur.    The key with this process is Automate which, schedules and puts out approved updates and restarts at approved and scheduled times.  If you look at your windows update during a regular day, it may say that you have updates waiting to be installed.  This is because the system either was not online during the update window, or the updates were downloaded between the update windows.

If you investigate your update history: You may see that NO updates have been installed.  This is misleading since we use our Automate System to run the updates.  The log that is available to the user that shows your update history only detects if Windows itself ran the updates, while Automate uses behind the scenes processes that allow for as little user interaction as possible.  One side effect of this is that the windows log does not record the updates that are installed by automate.  Not to fear though!   Automate keeps a log of each update successfully installed to each computer that is on during the time frame and, like any responsible IT partner, we are more than happy to share these logs.

How You Can Help Ensure Successful Windows Updates

Automate allows us to service our clients as seamlessly as possible, however there is some user interaction required.  It is vital that the computers that are being updated be powered on at the time of updates.  For non-Darkhorse Tech clients, you may request that your IT partner institute optimal power settings so that your computers are accessible but not draining your bank account in off-hours.  Should the computer scheduled for an update be offline during the scheduled time then the update process fails.  If the update process fails, it does NOT restart when the computer is back on.  The process is attempted again during the next scheduled update window.  If the computers are offline for multiple scheduled updates, the updates do not get downloaded and installed on your systems and that will lead to out of date computers that slow down, get buggy, and affect your offices. The best practice we can advise is to speak with your IT partner (should they operate as Darkhorse does) and come up with a good power plan for your office to allow for the computers to be accessible during the maintenance and update windows.

Wrapping Up:

For Darkhorse Client: Windows updates are governed by the Automate System

Approved windows updates will utilize Automate to automatically download to the computers that require them.

Automate will install those updates during Set Update Time Windows only.  It is Vital that the systems be on during these windows.

Automate will not update the Windows Updater Log due to it's automatic nature, but we keep a log of all updates processed and installed on each system and are happy to share your data with you.

About Darkhorse Tech

Whether you're just starting out or a well-established organization, Darkhorse Tech has the experience and technology to help get you moving, cut costs, and streamline your operations via unlimited IT support. We are here to help you do what you do best: focus on providing top-notch care and service for patients - not dealing with IT problems, lag time spent talking with technical support, or complicated technological mishaps. Unlimited IT support services help the whole team work efficiently without worrying about significant system issues or constant interruptions.

Our additional security services include:

  • Unlimited Remote and/or On-Site IT Support of All Your Hardware and Software
  • Improved Network Performance and Security
  • HIPAA Compliant Off-Site and Local Backup Service (Darkhorse Secure Backup)
  • Managed Antivirus, Anti-Malware, and Anti-Ransomware (Darkhorse Security Products)
  • Compliance & Security Laws Standards
  • Microsoft Security Patch Management
  • Vendor Management: We will be on the phone, not your employees
  • Secure, Remote Access to Your Office
  • Firewall Management
  • Network Management
  • Long Term Planning and Budgeting

Contact us anytime if you want to learn more about our dental-specific solutions and unlimited support packages. Our friendly customer service team will get back to you in no time.

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Darkhorse Dental IT Is Here For You

We understand that caring for your patients is your top priority. Dealing with a computer issue, slow IT response time or HIPAA compliance requirements just aren’t high on your list of to-do’s. That’s where Darkhorse Dental Tech comes in. Our team of Dental IT specialists are experts when it comes to running a great, secure and successful practice —and so much more. Whether you’re looking for IT services for startups, or existing support and security services for your practice, Darkhorse can do it all for you, so you can get back to your patients.

Have questions? Looking for ideas? Just want to talk teeth? Drop us a line at to get the conversation started! Or head to our Contact page to send us a message. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram!

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