One of the things that software developers or anybody else who is involved in computers one way or another always recommends users is too often check for updates.
In fact most computer systems, whether Windows or Mac alert their users to perform updates whenever there is a thing that needs to be updated.
Users are often rightly warned that if they do not have the most up-to-date versions of the software they are using things might soon start to go wrong.
But, what happens when they are not able to check for updates? Believe it or not, this is a fairly common problem with Windows users. There is a common error message that says “Windows Update cannot currently check for updates”.
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When it comes to computer problems there can be many different sources of frustration but the worst ones always have one thing in common and that is that they seem illogical. In this case, it just does not seem to make a lot of sense to get an update telling you that Windows cannot check for updates.
What does that even mean? And, even more importantly how can you get rid of that and actually make windows able to check for updates again? Also, if your computer cannot even check for updates how would you possibly know if there are any updates that you should perform on your machine?
We are assuming that if you are reading this article is because you are wondering those things too. And this is where we come in. In this article will tell you everything you will need to know about this error including, of course, how to fix it once and for all.
What Causes This Error Message?
So, as usual, when dealing with computer problems of any nature the first thing that would help you to get near being able to solve it would be to know what is causing it.
Not only will know when it helps you understand it but it may also help you in preventing the problem from happening again in the future.
In the specific case of this software update error, the most common reason is that the temporary update folder has somehow become corrupted. We must say that this problem affects some Windows computers specifically. Typically it is computers that run on one of the following operating systems see themselves affected by this problem: Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows Vista.
Knowing this in itself might not be of much help if you are not extremely computer savvy. If you are a fairly expo user, however, you might be able to just go ahead and fix the problem based on this information. Do not worry if you are not, though, for in the rest of this article will give you different options that you could follow in order to solve the problem.
How Do You Fix This Problem?
There are actually several different possible solutions to windows not been able to check for updates. The good news is that these fixes are simple in that they are very easy to perform in you do not necessarily need a lot of prior knowledge or experience in fixing similar computer problems.
We will present all the different possible solutions one by one and will give you an easy to follow step-by-step guide for each of them.
So, without much further ado here is solution number one. This solution requires the following steps:
- Grab your Windows computer.
- Hold down the following two keys simultaneously: the Windows key and the R key. This should prompt the run command box to open.
- Once the run command box has open, type the following message on it: services.msc.
- Press the enter key. This action will prompt the services window to display on your screen.
- Then you will need to search for the Windows update service from the displayed list. Just be careful so you do not select the wrong thing.
- Once you have found Windows update service right click on it so different options are displayed and then choose stop from all the different options. Leave the window open.
- Then you will need to open my computer and head over to the following folder: C:Windows.
- Once in that folder, you will have to look for a subfolder called software distribution. You have been two options you can simply rename it so you will not get confused later on or just go ahead and delete it.
- After you have either deleted or renamed that subfolder you will need to head back to Windows update service. You will not need to open it again as you would have left it already open while proceeding.
- Start the Windows Update service.
- Finally, go ahead and attempt to update Windows again.
As you can see, the steps are not really difficult, you will just need to make sure that you follow them one by one correctly.
If, this method does not achieve the right results, you still have other options. The next option involves downloading some external software.
Do not worry, this is completely safe but we do realize that some people might not be comfortable doing this. Also, this takes a little bit more time than the first solution. It is because of these two things that we are only suggesting this option as an alternative, and not as their main fix. It is really up to you which one of our methods you decide to try out but there is a reason why we have ordered them in the way we have.
Having said all of this, here are the steps you will need to follow in order to perform this second for an alternative fix:
- Grab your Windows computer again.
- Head over to the Microsoft website and search for the KB3102810 security update or just Google it (or search for us using any search engine of your choice, of course).
- Once you have found this security update go ahead and install it.
- After the security update from Microsoft has been fully installed you will need to restart your computer. Wait for the computer to fully restored before proceeding with the next step.
- Now, be very careful as you will need to follow some of the steps from the previous solution. You will need to go back to step number seven (in other words, you will need to go to the C:Windows folder and find the software distribution sub folder).
- The next step will be to stop the Windows Update service.
- Then go ahead and delete or rename then folder known the software distribution.
- Once you have deleted or renamed that folder you will need to restart your computer.
- Wait until your computer has fully restarted it, and then try to perform the Windows update again.
These are the two main options, and in our experience they are more than enough to stop this air and let your Windows computer check for new updates and be able to perform them. We are not claiming at all that these are the only possible solution for this problem. Also, likely, this problem is less common now than it was at some point in the past, because it tends to affect older versions of Windows for one reason or another.
Another solution that is worth mentioning, particularly if you have tried or two solutions already and neither has worked for you is one involved in the installation of what is known as an Intel Rapid Storage Technology driver. You can just Google or search for this I may just fix your update problems with the Windows.
But we would still really suggest you tried both the step-by-step solutions that we have gone through in detail in this tutorial. If one of them did not work you should try the other one.
What is really important is that you follow them carefully and accurately. If they did not work for you, you should at least consider whether you skip one or more steps or did not follow them to the letter. There is nothing really complicated about both the fixes that we have gone through, but it could be quite easy to mess them up, I said where, by simply skip in one of the steps or not doing what you are supposed to be doing correctly and accurately.
So, one of our final suggestions would be to go over them again if they did not work the first time, just reading them slowly this time as to avoid missing any of the details.
If you have any tips of your own or you have followed a different set of steps that have worked for you when fixing this particular problem, why don’t you share them with our readers by leaving us a message in the comment section below? Also, if you have any feedback about this article or any fixes you would like to share for this particular problem that affects Windows computers, please consider leaving us a message in the comment section below!
Ryan is a computer enthusiast who has a knack for fixing difficult and technical software problems. Whether you’re having issues with Windows, Safari, Chrome or even an HP printer, Ryan helps out by figuring out easy solutions to common error codes.