How to Repair Windows Update Errors

Windows Update is an essential feature that keeps your system secure and running smoothly by providing updates for the operating system, drivers, and software. However, sometimes errors occur that can prevent updates from installing correctly. Here’s a comprehensive guide to troubleshooting and repairing Windows Update errors.

Common Windows Update Errors

Before diving into the repair process, it’s helpful to know some common error codes and what they mean:

  • 0x80073712: A file needed by Windows Update is damaged or missing.
  • 0x800F0923: A driver or other software on your PC isn’t compatible with the update.
  • 0x80240034: Windows Update failed to install.
  • 0x8007000E: Not enough memory to complete the update.
Steps to Repair Windows Update Errors
  1. Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter

    • Windows 10:
      1. Open the Start menu and go to Settings > Update & Security > Troubleshoot > Additional troubleshooters.
      2. Select Windows Update and click Run the troubleshooter.
    • Windows 11:
      1. Open the Start menu and go to Settings > System > Troubleshoot > Other troubleshooters.
      2. Find Windows Update and click Run.

    The troubleshooter will try to identify and fix any issues automatically.

  2. Check Your Internet Connection

    Ensure you have a stable internet connection as a poor connection can cause updates to fail. Restart your router if needed.

  3. Restart Windows Update Service

    1. Press Win + R, type services.msc, and press Enter.
    2. In the Services window, locate Windows Update.
    3. Right-click Windows Update and select Restart.
  4. Delete Software Distribution Folder

    This folder stores temporary files for Windows Update. Deleting its contents can resolve update issues.

    1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator.
    2. Type the following commands one by one and press Enter after each:
      net stop wuauserv
      net stop bits
    3. Navigate to C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution and delete all files and folders inside.
    4. Return to the Command Prompt and type:
      net start wuauserv
      net start bits
  5. Run System File Checker (SFC) and DISM

    Corrupted system files can cause update errors. Use SFC and DISM to repair these files.

    1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator.
    2. Type the following command and press Enter:
      sfc /scannow
    3. After the SFC scan completes, run the DISM tool:
      DISM /Online /CleanupImage /RestoreHealth
  6. Free Up Disk Space

    Ensure you have enough disk space for updates. Remove unnecessary files and applications if needed.

  7. Reset Windows Update Components

    1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator.
    2. Type the following commands one by one and press Enter after each:
      net stop wuauserv
      net stop cryptSvc net stop bits net stop msiserver ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 catroot2.old net start wuauserv net start cryptSvc net start bits net start msiserver
  8. Check for Malware

    Malware can interfere with Windows Update. Run a full system scan using Windows Defender or your preferred antivirus software.

  9. Manually Install the Update

    1. Visit the Microsoft Update Catalog.
    2. Search for the update using its KB number.
    3. Download and install the update manually.
  10. Perform a Clean Boot

    Performing a clean boot can help you determine if a background program is causing the issue.

    1. Press Win + R, type msconfig, and press Enter.
    2. Go to the Services tab, check Hide all Microsoft services, and click Disable all.
    3. Go to the Startup tab and click Open Task Manager.
    4. Disable all startup items.
    5. Restart your computer and try updating again.

Conclusion

By following these steps, you can resolve most Windows Update errors and keep your system up to date. If the problem persists, you may need to consider more advanced solutions such as performing a system restore or resetting your PC. Regularly maintaining your system and keeping it free from unnecessary software can help prevent update issues in the future.