Loyola University Chicago

Information Technology Services

Patches and Updates

In order to keep your computer’s operating system running safely and efficiently, it is important that you regularly install the latest software patches and updates.

What do patches do?
After software gets released to the public and it is being used with a greater frequency, people may begin to notice small problems that were not found during testing. Also, old software may have compatibility issues with newer hardware and new software might not run properly on older hardware. Patches are then released to fix these problems.

Why should I care about patches?
Software patches and updates don’t just fix small problems; they often also fix serious security issues. Malicious users can exploit vulnerabilities in software to gain access to your system. By keeping your software up to date, it becomes much harder for someone to gain unauthorized access to your system.

How can I keep my software up to date?
The best way to keep software up to date is to regularly check for updates from the software company, and install all that are found. Microsoft has an update feature built into its operating systems and software which, when turned on, will automatically check with Microsoft for updates. Here at Loyola, computers in the labs, classrooms, and faculty/staff desktop PCs are monitored by network software. Updates are sent to them from a main server once the update has been tested and approved by our Desktop Services team. All those who bring their own computers to campus are required the keep their operating system and antivirus solution up to date.

It is just as important to keep your other applications up to date. Many applications have options to turn on automatic updates. If such a feature is not present, it is important that you check for updates regularly.