Adding 5 Words With A 56 Megabyte Windows Update

Martin Brinkmann
Jul 11, 2008
Updated • Dec 6, 2012
Windows, Windows Updates

Lets talk about inefficiency. Microsoft just released an update that adds five words to the English dictionary file that has an impressive size of 56 Megabytes. The five words that are added by this update that is available through a Knowledge Base article and Windows Update are "Friendster", "Klum", "Nazr", "Obama" and "Racicot".

The update applies to all editions of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. Probably even better than having to download a 56 Megabyte file for five additional words is the fact that the computer has to be restarted after updating the operating system.

Install this update to add words to the English and German standard dictionaries. After you install this item, you may have to restart your computer. This update is provided to you and licensed under the Windows Vista License Terms.

The explanation on the other hand is quite boring. The update replaces the dictionary files with the updated versions meaning the user is actually downloading the full dictionary files and not just a patch that adds the five words to them.

Most users on the other hand will probably never use those five words anyway or if they do, make no spelling mistakes doing so, lets hope that this update will be optional and not mandatory.

Incremental updates are obviously the better choice for these kind of updates, considering that you do not need to download the whole application or data again when you add a couple of words to a dictionary. Instead, you could simply add the words and be done with it, which probably would not be a 100 Kilobyte download in total.


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  1. Babs said on July 15, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    I use Microsoft because it came with my computer, and I always read what the updates are for. This is one I did not bother install.

  2. David said on July 15, 2008 at 2:48 am

    That’s really terrible. You’d think they would have a setup whereby they could incrementally add new words to the dictionary without adding the whole dictionary again.

    I mean, if I had to download every single virus signature known to man whenever “one” new virus signature was available – my bandwidth limit would certainly be hitting the roof.

  3. chi said on July 12, 2008 at 3:27 am

    56mb is still bloody enormous for a dictionary.

    assuming that on average, there are 20 words per line in a book, and 65 lines per page, where each word is on average 5 characters long, then one page in a book takes up 6500 bytes. by my calculations, if the dictionary released by microsoft were made into a book, it would be 8615 pages long.

    and mind you, i pick some rather large numbers for these calculations.

  4. gokudomatic said on July 11, 2008 at 8:21 pm

    they’re: “see”,”how”,”we”,”mock”,”you”

  5. cyneuron said on July 11, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    what else could you expected from Microsoft….

  6. Escoson said on July 11, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    What are those 5 words anyways?

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