Windows Updates Not Working

by Pete
(Stalybridge, UK)

Windows 7 Automatic Updates

Windows 7 Automatic Updates

Windows Updates simply do not work on my computer. When I try to perform a manual update it just says failed. It has done this for several months now. Nothing else is affected.

My Automatic updates are still set to default settings which is every day at 03:00. Not that my computer is switched on at that time.

It is just that I haven't really thought about changing it.

I also downloaded and installed drivers as and when they are made available by Microsoft. I don't know about you but I have never had an issue here.

I am also comforted by the fact that everything is as up to date as it can be, therefore as secure as it can be.

In terms of my update issues I have no idea how to fix. Do you know what's going on here, and what the answer is?

Steve's Response


Thank you Pete for your submission.

The first thing to look at here is the problems you are having applying Windows updates to your computer.

I note from the image you are using Windows 7? OK. There are two things I usually look at when I encounter these issues: Windows Update Agent (pictured) and BITS Queue.

On occasion the Windows Update Agent becomes corrupted, or doesn't update properly so it can manage the new Microsoft updates.

The Windows Update Agent is the thing that manages the entire patching process on your computer. It needs to be in working order to download and install patches successfully.

If this Agent is compromised by Malware, for example, it will not work properly.

Fortunately Microsoft offer an automatic fix for this. To apply it to your computer run the Windows Update Agent' (Opens New Window) fix file.

The second issue to look at is the BITS Queue. Sometimes this protocol also becomes damaged and to fix it yourself is long and complicated.

Again, fortunately Microsoft have provided the fix in a download. Click the How Do I Reset Windows Update Components (Opens New Window) link to run the fix on your computer.

Once your computer is working again properly make sure your computer(s) are fully patched.

Then go to your Control Panel and change the automatic update time to when your computer(s) are switched on.

This will ensure you get the latest patches quicker.

If you have no issues with the drivers issued by Microsoft then you continue to download and apply them. I'm pleased to hear they are working fine for you.

If you do encounter any issues in the future go to the manufacturer's website and download these drivers instead.

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