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It can become something of an irritation to constantly update Windows if you use your computer on a fairly ongoing basis. Whether you’re doing time-sensitive work, have deadlines to meet, or just have 37 different tabs of research open, and really don’t want to close and re-open all those web pages- updates can be disruptive. How often has it seemed that just when you finally stopped ignoring the Windows update alert that was popping up every hour, took the time to close down your computer, and finally install them – two days later there is another update alert.
Yes, this can all be a hassle, but Windows updates are important for many reasons. Generally speaking, these updates keep your operating system and your computer running at optimal levels. They fix errors, add extra security from viruses and malware, update Internet Explorer to the newest version, and much more. We have all been guilty of ignoring the Windows updates alerts for days, or even a week or more, but they really should be installed as soon as possible. Think of these updates as vaccination shots, to prevent computer measles, chicken pox, influenza, mumps and other diseases. You wouldn’t ignore a hepatitis vaccination, right?
However, just like a flu shot doesn’t prevent all types of flu, Windows updates don’t prevent every vulnerability or problem on a PC. These updates don’t always download, transfer or install smoothly. There are Windows update errors that can occur. Some of these errors may be due to improper installation, failed connection, outdated software or outdated drivers. You may have even experienced some of these errors. One of the difficulties is, most of the time the errors are identified by a strange numerical figure, instead of plain language description of the problem. Windows does provide some direction as to how to solve some of the errors, but many involve complicated manual fixes.
For a quick reference guide, listed below are some common errors that occur when updating Windows, along with brief descriptions, causes and solutions.
This happens when one or all of the updates were downloaded, but not installed onto your computer. There can be several causes for this, such as problems with the .NET Framework, which may need uninstalled/reinstalled or updated. You can also check your error code log to view the reasons, but if you aren’t computer savvy, this will be complicated.
One of these error code titles could mean something as simple as a slow internet connection, in which case you can try again when your computer has a faster, stronger connection. Or, it could be due to something a bit more complicated, like mismatched data. In other words, you will not be able to install the updates until this is fixed, because not all files were downloaded. This problems occurs after your computer has downloaded and extracted the files.
This error can be somewhat minor, or it can be very serious. If it is a minor error message, than Windows simply has a problem with your software distribution. Some people rename this folder, others delete them all. A far more serious cause of this error is problems with your registry, which is the storage area of all the computers files and folders. Make sure all drivers are updated as well, and never attempt to open or change your registry unless you have advance experience.
On Windows Vista and Windows 7, a message box typically accompanies this update error, which reads:
Failed: xx updates
Errors Found: some
This error is often caused by a corruption in the system BITS files (Background Intelligence Transfer Service). The problem can be solved with a BITS repair tool, but you have to go the Microsoft website and download the tool, and you must know whether you have a 32 or 64 BITS system. Many people will not know the difference or how to find out, and the BITS repair tool doesn’t do anything for other update errors.
This may be accompanies by a box or line that reads Errors Found. The cause behind this error is usually an error in the internet connection, or perhaps a firewall or proxy. Solutions to this, as suggested by Microsoft, are to temporarily disable any 3rd party anti-virus software and/or firewalls. But who wants to leave their computer vulnerable, just to update Windows? Especially when there is a particular virus that first manifests by not allowing Windows to update. If anti-virus and malware protection is disabled in this case, it could end up wiping out an entire hard drive. It’s best to first find out exactly why Windows is not being updating, or try other methods to fix the problem rather than to disable all protective software and firewalls.
There are plenty of other common errors when updating Windows, which are necessary updates for computer performance. The first option(s) are to check the error code, enter it into the Microsoft website or Windows help center on your computer, and resolve each problem manually as is suggested by either of these sources. But what if these suggestions don’t work? Not to mention, what if there are other errors and updates that haven’t been installed? Or, what if the solution is too complex for those who aren’t familiar with that kind of troubleshooting, or are uncomfortable with opening the specified files or folders?
There are other free solutions for fixing Windows update errors – automatically. Several update error repair kits are available online. With one download and program run, all errors are fixed, without endangering your registry by tampering with it, and without the hassle of trying to solve each error individually.
If Windows Update is not working for you we recommend using Registry Booster to repair your windows installation. Registry Booster will get to the root of the problem and repair any registry errors that are causing Windows Update from running correctly. You can download Registry Booster here and repair up to 15 errors for free!