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From the Tips Box: Halting Windows Automatic Reboot, Enabling Unity Menus in Chrome, and Tabbed PuTTY Windows

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Once a week we open up the tips box and share some helpful reader tips. This week we’re looking at easily halting Windows automatic reboot on update, enabling Unity menus in Chrome, and putting tabs in your PuTTY interface.

Batch Files Offers One Click Reboot Halt

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Dave liked our halting reboot tip so much that he put together a little batch file to pause updates until next reboot. He writes:

One of the most annoying “features” of Windows Update (and others) comes when you have seven busy windows open and they keep popping up the reminder that you have to restart your computer for the changes to take effect.  That means saving everything, closing everything, and waiting for a reboot.  Then just try to remember where you were before you were rudely interrupted.

This appeared originally on HTG, but here is the ultimately convenient form.   Create a new batch file with the following contents:

net stop “automatic updates”

pause

and save it with an easy to remember name: GOAWAY.bat. One click and it shuts down the update service.  Don’t worry: it WILL come back next time you boot up, hopefully at a more convenient time before you get 11 windows open. 

Just drag and drop a shortcut on your desktop.  I changed to the “NOT” icon (red circle with a slash, to make it easy to find.  An unhappy face would also work.)

Thanks for sharing Dave! For readers with widescreen monitors (and taskbar space to spare) pinning it right to the taskbar might be worthwhile if forced reboots really bother them.

Enable Unity Menus in Google Chrome

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If you’re a Google Chrome fan using Ubuntu Linux, Caleb’s handy tip about enabling Unity menu support in Chrome is for you. He writes:

While sifting through the features in Google Chrome’s about:flags, I found a setting to enable the Unity menus for it.  Enter about:flags into the Chrome address bar, scroll down until you see an item called “Experimental GNOME menu bar support.“, and turn it on.  Restart Chrome and you’ll notice the change immediately.

So many neat things can be found in the about:flags/about:config menus within Chrome. Nice find Caleb!

Tabbed PuTTY Usage

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Mark writes in with a great application tip for PuTTY power users:

I use PuTTY a lot and can’t imagine using it without PuTTYTabManager. Essentially it’s just a GUI wrapper for PuTTY that allows you to open and manage multiple instances of PuTTY… perfect for those times you need to SSH into one box, telnet into another, etc. It’s a real time saver for PuTTY power users!

Thanks for the tip Mark! Readers who are interested in tabbed PuTTY should check out Mark’s suggestion and also a client we previously reviewed, Putty Connection Manager.


Have a tip to share? Send it to us at tips@howtogeek.com and you might just see it on the front page.

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 07/28/11

Comments (1)

  1. Xeogin

    Rather than a batch file, group policy can be used to disable the automatic restart and setting updates to run during times that are usually less busy are both pretty easy fixes. I personally just have Windows Update notify me when updates are available, which oddly checks every 22 (Not 24) hours by default!

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