I have gave up with never ending updates i have even turned the auto updates off computer works fine,no problems with XP i keep away from the dam things i have installed SP1 when it came out. I never have any problems with 98 or ME yes i said ME. What is not funny i don't think Microsft have given any thought to the time it takes to reinstall XP after a crash for what ever reason.
There is usually no need to load any updates. Personally I would wait for a few months until any problems have been sorted. Updates for windows or software rarely make a noticeable difference. Using W98SE I have never updated it and I have not gone doolaly-tap. I use another computer with XP which has never been updated and it runs as well as ever.