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  1. #1
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    Windows Update problem

    I recently upgraded my son's Vista-64 machine to Windows 7 (using an HP upgrade disk included when the machine was purchased). The upgrade went well, and the Microsoft activation went without a hitch.
    A file check using SFC showed no system file corruption.

    I set Windows Update for manual updates, then ran it. As expected there were many update files to download and install (200+ files). Rather than spend the hours necessary to download and install the files, I opted to install some applications (Avast, Microsoft Office, Firefox, an updated graphics driver (nVIDIA), etc.), in order to get the machine in a useable condition for my son.

    Yesterday, I went back to run Windows Update again, and install the required files. The initial Windows Update screen opened, I clicked on the "Check for Updates" button, and the machine did just that.

    The problem is, the machine never stopped checking for updates. No files were ever presented for download (well, "ever" in this case means 45 minutes or so, until I finally closed Windows Update).

    I re-ran SFC, and came up clean.

    I tried running Windows Update again (several times) with the same results. No error messages were ever presented.

    Any ideas for fixing this would be greatly appreciated. Meanwhile, the machine is humming along quite happily, unaware of how obsolete it really is.

  2. #2
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    It may have had problems connecting to the MS server and perhaps trying again after a cold boot could resolve, but I would have thought that if the updates had already been presented they should still have been there.

    I think you would have known about it if they had auto installed, but you could check the update history.

    Sometimes for the connectivity, going into the Properties of (TCP/IPv4) of whichever network adapter - wireless or LAN is being used and change the DNS server settings to use 8.8.8.8 /8.8.4.4 can resolve, but resetting the Update Components can also help.

    https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/971058
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2015-09-30 at 04:17.

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    Just a point here, since win 10 came out windows update for win 7 has been pretty flaky. I have waited long periods at times and then it seems to work. Sometimes it throws an error and sometimes it doesn't.

  5. #4
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    Thank you both for your replies. Again, for some reason, I am no longer being notified by email when someone replies, so I apologize in advance for any delays in my responses.

    Sudo, I have verified that no updates have been installed (in fact, I've set Windows Update for manual operation, so nothing should happen automatically).
    In any case, with 200+ updates waiting in the wings, it would take hours to download and install them, and that certainly hasn't happened.

    Thank you for the link. I think that I'll try that first, as soon as I'm in front of my son's computer again (he lives at a different location). I'm a little less confident about changing the DNS server settings, as I currently am unsure about how to do that (but I'm going to learn).

  6. #5
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    Changing the DNS server settings is pretty straight forward.

    Either go Start - type ncpa.cpl and press enter or right click on the WiFi icon in the system tray and select Open Network and Sharing Center.

    With the latter, click on Change adapter settings then right click on whichever you are using - Local Area Connection or Wireless and select Properties.

    Click on (TCP/IPv4) to highlight then on Properties.

    Near the bottom of the window click on the button to Use the following DNS server addresses then enter an 8 into each of the top row of boxes then 8 8 4 4 into the lower row.

    If you type 8.8.8.8 it will auto tab to the next box and then type 8.8.4.4 after going to the lower row.

    These are Google's servers.

    When done check the box to Validate settings upon exit - click OK and Close on the remaining window and that will invoke Windows connectivity trouble shooter.

    If that returns that it cannot ID the problem then you are good to go - as they say

    After I factory reset I change the update settings to Check for but let me choose... and then get on with reinstalling the bits I want back on and leave the updates to last, then setting them away shortly before going to bed as they take about 9hrs to complete with my ~6.5meg sync. speed when I also opt to get the MS ones as well.

    However, once they have presented for download, I've never seen them disappear before when I've gone back to hide the ones I don't want installing like the Win 10 triggering/telemetry ones.

    You can run this MS tool as well for good measure. http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/w...readiness-tool

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    Thanks for that info, Sudo.

    If the first link you provided doesn't work, I'll try changing the DNS server settings.

    There were corrupted system files with the original Vista system that SFC couldn't fix. However, as I mentioned above, the upgrade installed properly and and SFC said all was well. And, of course, updates were presented initially. Doesn't that imply that the upgrade readiness tool wasn't actually necessary?

    In any case, in the event of failure of the above solutions, I'll probably do a factory restore of the old system, then run the readiness tool and finally re-install the upgrade. What a PITA!

  9. #7
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    Well, something has gone awry - did you run the sfc /scannow after the updates disappeared ?

    Not sure if either of those Fixits does this but from a cmd prompt run as an admin, enter these cmds to see if the Check for updates still hangs, but Event Viewer may have recorded something related to the updates disappearing.

    net start bits

    net start wuauserv

    exit (to close the cmd window)
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2015-10-01 at 05:12.

  10. #8
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    OK, new info.

    Sudo, I tried the suggestions in KB 971058 (ref. your link above).

    First, I ran the Microsoft Fixit file (using the link in the KB article), and it could not find any errors in the Windows Update files.

    Next, I attempted to manually reset the Windows Update components, as instructed further down in the KB article.

    In step 6 (Register the BITS files and the Windows Update files), I successfully registered most of the DLL's, but there were about 15 files that returned the error message shown in the attachment (or something similar).

    The DLL's in question do exist, and are in the same folder (System32) that all the other DLL's (the one's that registered successfully) are in.

    Any idea why this is happening, and how to fix it?

    Also, SFC /scannow returns no errors, and the "net start bits" and "net start wuauserv" commands were successful.

    Thanks.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by LesF; 2015-10-18 at 01:59.

  11. #9
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    Can you go Start - right click on Computer and select Properties to check if the HP upgrade disk included SP1 - it will say at the top of the page if the install includes SP1.

    If it doesn't show SP1 then you can try its manual download from https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/down...s.aspx?id=5842

    You want the second one from the bottom and sometimes you have to go back to that page to Retry.

    Having SP1 installed can sometimes offset update problems.

    If SP1 fails to install, then that should give an error code to work on.

    I assume it still hangs when checking for updates ?

    While I've never heard of Avast causing update problems, sometimes an AV program will and disabling that to see if it is the cause would be one thing to eliminate.
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2015-10-18 at 03:54.

  12. #10
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    You can try Windows Secrets Newsletter columnist Fred Langa's steps to fix a faulty Windows Update...

    In an elevated (Run as administrator) Command Prompt, do the following...

    1. Type: cd %windir% and press enter.

    2. Type: net stop wuauserv and press enter.

    3. Type: net stop cryptsvc and press enter.

    4. Type: net stop bits and press enter.

    5. Type: net stop msiserver and press enter.

    6. Type: ren SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old and press enter.

    7. Type: cd %windir%/system32 and press enter.

    8. Type: ren catroot2 Catroot2.old and press enter.

    9. Type: net start wuauserv

    10. Type: net start cryptsvc

    11. Type: net start bits

    12. Type: net start msiserver

    13. Type: exit

    Run Windows Update again.

  13. #11
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    Sudo, I'm not sure if SP-1 was installed with the upgrade, but I'll check with my son. I did look at the download page for the SP1 upgrade, but when I select download for the second one from the bottom, it presents me with a choice of six files. I assume that it's only the ISO (first on the list) that I need to download. Is that correct?

    jwoods, thanks for that info, I'll try it next time I'm in front of the computer.

    Thank you both for your replies.

  14. #12
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    When you check the second one from the bottom which is for the 64 bit then click on Next, you should get this page -

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/down...n.aspx?id=5842

    If you don't get the pop up to Run/Save/Cancel after about 30 secs, then click on the Click here link in the article and that will take you back to the selection page with a prompt to Try again.

    Can you post either the URL for that page or attach a snip of what you are getting.

    Don't forget to see if disabling Avast has any effect.
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2015-10-18 at 12:22.

  15. #13
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    Thanks, Sudo, I downloaded it from your link in post 12.
    When I followed your link in post 9 and then clicked 2nd from the bottom and the Download button, this was what I got (https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/down...s.aspx?id=5842), which did not produce the download confirmation dialog. Hence my confusion.

  16. #14
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    Additional info: I just spoke with my son, and he verified that SP1 is already installed on his computer, so I guess we can rule that out (???).

  17. #15
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    Well at least having SP1 installed rules something out - has your son tried with Avast disabled yet ?

    As the problem didn't seem to start until after installing those bits and updating Nvidia, I wonder if restoring to prior then could help ?

    I'm just looking at the time frame of this thread and as my restore points only go back 14 days, this may have already expired for your son but would be worth checking.

    I haven't been able to find much on that "mshtml.dll" error except to perhaps to run the cmd regsvr32 wintrust.dll followed by netsh winsock reset catalog from an elevated cmd prompt.

    The latter cmd could help as it's connectivity related and requires a reboot to effect, which can be done with the cmd shutdown /r /t 00

    Have those general update trouble shooting cmds been executed yet ?

    I have them in a slightly easier format -

    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

    I leave the exit bit off until all of the cmds have successfully executed should any return an error.

    To save you having to go backwards and forwards to your son's, you could email him a link to this thread so that he can read it for himself, or would you prefer to do the trouble shooting ?

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