Everyone that has ever used Microsoft Windows XP for any length of time as likely been in the middle of something important when Windows XP wants to restart after an automatic update. Here is how to temporarily turn off the restart so you can continue uninterrupted - or worse yet, return after getting coffee to find your computer has restarted losing all of the information you were working on.
You can temporarily turn off the restart after automatic update two different ways. By the command line, simply type in: net stop “automatic updates” Make sure you include the quotes. This will turn off the automatic restart after Windows XP updates until the computer is restarted.
The second way is to stop the service. Open computer management. You can do this by right clicking on the Start icon (lower left) and then Explore. When windows explorer opens, right click on computer and select manage. Open Services under Services and Applications. Select Automatic Updates (it's called Windows Update in Vista) and select Stop. Do not disable. When you reboot the computer, the service will restart.
This will work with Vista too although Vista has the option to not remind again or remind at a later time (up to four hours) so it is not necessary for the Vista operating system.