How to Update Group Policies Faster

How to Update Group Policies Faster

Using group policies, administrators can control necessary computer and user settings from a central point. They can then spread these settings across the network.

Any changes made to the Update group policies that are present on computers in Active Directory will be applied automatically, either within 90 minutes or after a computer restart. And the good news is you can also speed up this process.


Update group policies from the command line with gpupdate

The easiest and fastest method is reapplying group policies via the command line. If you are sitting in front of the computer or connected via remote maintenance, the command will help you gpupdate further.

The /Force parameter reapplies any policies that have changed since the last run.


Other important parameters of the command gpupdate are:

  • /Target:{computers | users}
    With this switch, you can control whether only computer or user policies are reapplied. By default, both are updated.
  • /Boat
    After applying the group policy settings, the computer will restart automatically if extensions requiring reboot are called.
  • /logoff
    When this parameter is set, the currently logged-on user is automatically logged off if this becomes necessary for processing.
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You can find all parameters under:

Group Policy update via Group Policy Management

However, the group policies can also be applied remotely to all computers in the Windows domain. You can find the corresponding option in the group policy management of the domain controllers.

You can apply the manual group policy update per organizational unit (OU). To do this, right-click on an OU and select “Group Policy Update”. A window will then open where you will be shown how many computers the update should be on.

If you confirm this dialog with “Yes,” all clients within this organizational unit receive the command to update the group policies. In the following window, you can follow the group policy update results.

You can even save the results of this process in CSV format for evaluation or archiving.

Important: With this method, the group policy management of the server creates two temporary tasks in the Windows task scheduler on the target computers (update the user and computer policies via gpupdate /force). If the Windows Task Scheduler is disabled on a client (services), the group policies will not be updated on this computer.

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Update group policies via PowerShell

Group policies can also be updated on remote computers using Windows PowerShell. Here, the cmdlet Invoke-GPUpdate is used. However, only one computer can be managed per run. For example, to set the computer policies on the above machine (RA-TS01.ra.local), the command is:

Invoke-GPUpdate -Computer RA-TS01.ra.local -Target Computer

The cmdlet Invoke GPUpdate is available from Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012. The command can also be used on Windows 7 clients.

As before, the following applies here: The Windows task scheduler must not be deactivated on the target computer; otherwise, the update of group policies via the network will fail.

Rohit is a certified Microsoft Windows expert with a passion for simplifying technology. With years of hands-on experience and a knack for problem-solving, He is dedicated to helping individuals and businesses make the most of their Windows systems. Whether it's troubleshooting, optimization, or sharing expert insights,