Office updates restarting app

Hi there!
I’m (my users) facing a problem I don’t really find a good solution. Some of the updates of Microsoft Office involve restarting the app. Automox can notify users when a system is going to reboot. But seems to be no way to either stop restarting the app or notifying users in a proper way.
The most we can do (and this was the idea that Automox team told me) is to notify users that there is an Office update and that they have to be careful because maybe the applications shuts down.

As you can imaging, this is very important as this can result in loosing hours of work in a document.

Does anyone faced this problem? What ideas you suggest?

Hello amj,
There is one more thing you could do as well within Automox. It would involve a bit more work and a second policy but what you could do is build a patch only policy built specifically to handle Office.
You would add the filter “Everything Office” and it would look like this

Then you would change your primary policy to an Everything But policy and setup a filter to exclude “Everything Office”

You would still need to setup a notification that would warn users that the policy for Office is about to run but this would allow the policy that runs for Office to run much faster and the users can get back to using Office sooner.

2 Likes

Yesterday a user complained about this. The workaround seems decent, but the problem in our case is that we have automatic (no approval needed) patching only for high/critical patches. For anything else we manually approve them. If we used this workaround, it would be back to automatic again for at least Office. I havn’t found a way to make a Manual Approval policy, but with a filtered list, like having a Patch Only policy, but with an approval needed option.

Yes, this is exactly what I have now. I think the problem is more in the side of Microsoft, that it just restarts the application instead of warning the user…

maybe, but I don’t recall any of the regular office automatic updates ever restarting the office apps without prompting first. Could be wrong though

We’re experiencing this too. Happened to my CEO this morning before a board meeting. I’m eager to find a solution if anyone has one.

Have you thought about looking into disabling automatic updates via Group Policy? This would then allow Automox to apply the updates for you at your own discretion and prevent these silly things from happening.
Quick Google-Fu search and found this. Might be helpful? I know everyone’s environments are different so if you don’t use Group Policy; you can probably still get away with deploying a registry change via Mox.

You can use Group Policy Object Editor to create a policy setting to disable the automatic updates feature for Office. In that way, Office 365 won’t check for updates. And to prevent users from clicking Enable Updates in the File-> Account->Office Updates , you can also disable that button via GPO. In addition, you can enable these features in the future when you want Office to updates automatically. There is a reference about using Group Policy to configure update settings for Office 365.

To disable the automatic updates feature for Office, please try the following group policy settings:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\software\policies\microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate
Value Name: enableautomaticupdates
Value Type: REG_DWORD
Value Data: 0

To hide the option of enable or disable updates, please try the following group policy settings:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\software\policies\microsoft\office\16.0\common\officeupdate
Value Name: hideenabledisableupdates
Value Type: REG_DWORD
Value Data: 1

Source: https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/9124a98f-50c8-4bde-8104-5d18200a31b4/office-365-how-to-temorarily-disable-the-update-feature-for-all-users?forum=Office2016ITPro#:~:text=You%20can%20use%20Group%20Policy,disable%20that%20button%20via%20GPO.

  • Westyy
1 Like

This seems to be a behaviour change on Microsoft’s part. Previous updates would not cause Office apps to shutdown. It would give a dialog box to the user to confirm that apps will be shutdown for the update to proceed.