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Windows 8.1 Pro - Unable to Update

Silverhand92

Home IT Guy
Member
As the title says, my OS is unable to update. I've tried a lot of things.
I've tried Brink's article from Seven Forums to reset Windows Update, I've tried the MS Update Troubleshooter, I've tried an article I found about using GPEdit to change the Windows Update settings.
I'm running out of ideas, and still get the error message: "Windows Update can't check for updates because the service is not running. You may need to restart your PC."

Apparently I had some kind of virus, identified by BitDefender Professional 2019 (yes, I keep it updated) as a TrojanWare virus.
Using BitDefender Rescue, I was able to boot into the live environment outside of Windows and locate the virus, but after removing it, the error STILL appears on W8.1.
I'm annoyed, to say the least, and DO NOT want to have to do an OS-Reinstall without exhausting all other possibilities.

(I do admit, I copied somebody else's screen-cap because my PrintScreen key on my keyboard doesn't work.)

My system is built for multimedia editing, and I could lose HUNDREDS of hours of .edit files from Photoshop, etc.

HELP!!!
 

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Slavic

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Member
You forgot to note that the service Windows Update (wuauserv) is running on your PC either because of autostart or when you start it manually in the Services and it is visible in the Task Manager in the list of Windows processes among the processes running by Service Host: Local System. (Sorry if it's obvious, but anyway.)

Also it would be very helpful to check the last lines in the WindowsUpdate.log and look at the Event Viewer, Microsoft-Windows-WindowsUpdateClient/Operational, and note which errors are shown there. Like, for example, event 25
"Windows Update failed to check for updates with error 0x80072EFE." (it's one of very rare errors on my PC, yours may be different)
 

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Silverhand92

Home IT Guy
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Slavic, thanks for replying.

wuauserv in Task Manager Services shows up as Stopped, and when I click Start on the service, it will not change activity states to "Running" or anything like that.

Going into Services, I right-click Windows Update, click properties, set it to Automatic(delayed start) and when I attempt to run Windows Update, it freezes. (as attached)
When I refresh the Services window, Windows Update in Services shows up as disabled again.

Service Host: Local System does not show up when I search it in the start menu, so on that, I'm a little lost.
I've attached WindowsUpdate.log as a txt file to this post, so feel free to review the information. All help is appreciated.
 

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  • WUpdate.png
    WUpdate.png
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  • WindowsUpdate.txt
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Slavic

Member
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You gave some clues, but the whole picture is not fully clear yet.

First of all, the last lines in WindowsUpdate.log show that "wuauserv is disabled". This is a critical error, because this service should never be disabled in normal situation. You also noted that your attempts to change the startup type of wuauserv were unsuccessful. Indeed, WU may work all the time if there is nothing to do (like all recent updates are completed). But its startup should be either automatic (delayed start) or manual (triggered by Task Scheduler) and never disabled.

I can guess that Windows Update might be disabled in your system by administrative policy. Please check this and make sure that nothing in the group policy prevents WU from start.
Run -> gpedit.msc -> Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Update
Look at the right panel: all settings should be set to "Not configured". If something has been specifically set, reset it.

Now you need to check the failed system events related to Windows Update. (Generally speaking, it would be better to check all events on PC: the properly configured and maintained PC should not have the repeatedly occurred criticals and errors. Wait a bit on the start page of the Event Viewer and look at the Summary: Critical, Error, Warning.)

Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Event Viewer -> (go along the tree) Applications and Services Logs -> Microsoft -> Windows -> Windows Update Client -> Operational.
or in more simple form, Event Viewer, Microsoft-Windows-WindowsUpdateClient/Operational
Check all errors and warnings there, notice their Event ID and hexadecimal error code. "Information" can be simply skipped.
 

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Silverhand92

Home IT Guy
Member
Followed your steps as above, attempted to start Windows Update in services, then attempted to run the commands in this command prompt capture.
(Yes, I like white text on a blue background. Nicely visible, IMO.)

A DLL failure is popping up red flags in my mind.

I also downloaded and ran Windows Update Troubleshooter from Microsoft.

Upon running that, I get UpdateCapture.png.

Not sure what else to do.
 

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  • Cmdprompt.png
    Cmdprompt.png
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  • UpdateCapture.png
    UpdateCapture.png
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Slavic

Member
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Please try to add more info when possible:
1) Have you noticed something unusual in the Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc)?
2) Which update-related errors have you seen in the Event Viewer?

This DLL error should be fixed ASAP, unfortunately, here is no info about its name. Maybe it can be found in the events, but at the same time it would be reasonable to check the integrity of whole system:
Run CMD.exe as administrator, sfc /scannow

This command will restore any missed or corrupted system files, it will take some time.
 

My Computer

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    i7-6700 (Skylake)
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    Asus Maximus VIII Gene
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    Asus GeForce 1050 Ti, 4 GB
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Silverhand92

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Please try to add more info when possible:
1) Have you noticed something unusual in the Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc)?
2) Which update-related errors have you seen in the Event Viewer?

This DLL error should be fixed ASAP, unfortunately, here is no info about its name. Maybe it can be found in the events, but at the same time it would be reasonable to check the integrity of whole system:
Run CMD.exe as administrator, sfc /scannow

This command will restore any missed or corrupted system files, it will take some time.

Results attached.

(I'm getting pretty good with Alt+PrintScreen.)
 

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  • SFCPrompt.png
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Slavic

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Oh... One answer to two questions and one advice is something, but still not too much...
3) Please look at the file CBS.log and check which DLLs were fixed and which weren't.
You can guess that fixing them will be the next step of your (long?) work...
 

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Silverhand92

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Looks like it was a virus on top of a bad harddrive. My entire system crashed, and I had to install to a new drive.
My machine "Tantrum" earns its name yet again.

OK, not solved. New drive, reinstalled 8.1 Pro, still having issues.
Windows Update is still not working. (It's a new drive. WHAT GIVES?!)
 

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    AMD Radeon R7 250x Pro Series
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    Westinghouse Digital 22" LED TV
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    465GB Western Digital WDC WD5000AAKB-00H8A0 ATA Device (ATA )
    698GB Seagate ST3750640NA PATA Device (ATA )
    931GB Western Digital WDCWD10EZEX-22MFCA0 (SATA )
    931GB Seagate ST31000528AS SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
    1397GB Seagate ST31500541AS SCSI Disk
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    Corsair CX750 Bronze PSU
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    (3) Corsair CF 120 & (1) Corsair CF140mm fans
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    Logitech Wireless SB 120 Media AIO Keyboard
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Slavic

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My Computer

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brokensoftware

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The latest update (KB4493443) has all sorts of caveats including the fact that uSoft has disabled updating with it for a variety of anti-virus-installed platforms. See: KB4493443
 

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Silverhand92

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Slavic, I tried the update download that you linked to, but the system sat there running the program for approximately 11 hours continuously with no results.
Question: With a new OS installation, (as I said I'd had a complete OS drive failure and installed on a new drive) I use a couple of GPEdit selections to prevent users from disabling Windows Defender.
Would Defender being prevented from being disabled cause issues with Windows Update, or with the 8.1 Update Installer you linked to above? (If so, I can disable GPO settings and run the installer again.)

In addition, I've been having issues installing updates to the default windows apps, such as Music, or installing "Microsoft Featured" apps such as the Microsoft Solitare Collection.
Could the update issues and app problems be related? I ran the WURepair.bat found on this forum, and got these results. (Thumbnail attached.)
(I've also backed up all of my important files to external harddrives.)
 

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Last edited:

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    698GB Seagate ST3750640NA PATA Device (ATA )
    931GB Western Digital WDCWD10EZEX-22MFCA0 (SATA )
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    AMD Athlon II X4 640 (Propus)
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    MSI MS-7388
    Memory
    4 DDR2 x2GB = 8GB Total
    Graphics Card(s)
    AMD Radeon R7 250x Pro Series
    Sound Card
    Motherboard Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Westinghouse Digital 22" LED TV
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
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Silverhand92

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I found an interesting article in the Microsoft Support forums, here, and I'd be interested to see if this solves the problem, but the KB numbers linked into it are somewhat old. At the latest, it looks like one of the KB numbers is from July 2016, and one would hope that if the issue is resolved by an article that old, that it would become a mandatory update. Any thoughts?
 

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  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro Media Center x64
    Show second system?
    Yes
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Gender
    Male
    CPU
    AMD Athlon II X4 640 (Propus)
    Motherboard
    MSI MS-7388
    Memory
    4 DDR2 x2GB = 8GB Total
    Graphics Card(s)
    AMD Radeon R7 250x Pro Series
    Sound Card
    Motherboard Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Westinghouse Digital 22" LED TV
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    465GB Western Digital WDC WD5000AAKB-00H8A0 ATA Device (ATA )
    698GB Seagate ST3750640NA PATA Device (ATA )
    931GB Western Digital WDCWD10EZEX-22MFCA0 (SATA )
    931GB Seagate ST31000528AS SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
    1397GB Seagate ST31500541AS SCSI Disk
    PSU
    Corsair CX750 Bronze PSU
    Case
    Antec 200
    Cooling
    (3) Corsair CF 120 & (1) Corsair CF140mm fans
    Keyboard
    Logitech Wireless SB 120 Media AIO Keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech Wireless SB 120 Media AIO Mouse
    Internet Speed
    250 Mbps
    Browser
    Opera
    PC2
    Dell Studio 1555-S
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