22 July 2008

Windows Update failure after XP SP3 update

I encountered a problem at work the other day that I thought might be worth mentioning. After a fresh Windows XP SP2 install, I ran Windows Update and installed the SP3 update. After that, every single update that I tried to install would fail. At first I thought I had messed something up myself but after a little googling I found that this is a known issue and Microsoft address it here.

Two methods are mentioned and I opted for the second which involves downloading the Windows Update Agent and installing it from the command line with the "/wuforce" option.


  1. Just had same problem and in hunting for a solution I found both a simple solution and your site. Thank you.


    Installed the official SP3 on a clean installation before programs. It immediately stopped the Windows update site from working any further - any attempted installations failed, so I couldn't update Office etc after loading them. Did a system restore to remove SP3 and all was fine again. Any thoughts? [note this can be traced to a silent update of Windows Update from Microsoft predating SP3 that failed to register, leaving many in the lurch. Apparently Microsoft failed to make the same frigging adjustment in the script to register it when they created SP3. So I am guessing if you install SP3 on a currently undated system it works fine, but a new clean install and bammo, 'thank you Microsoft!']

    Cause & Solution:

    from Ziggy:

    I had the same problem, but I eventually found a solution.

    Windows XP Service Pack 3 installs a new version of Windows Update, but it forgets to register it.

    try the following:

    Log on as an administrator, and run cmd.exe, and issue the following commands:

    > net stop wuauserv

    > cd\windows\system32

    > regsvr32 wups2.dll

    > net start wuauserv

    and try again.

  2. thanks for the info fascistNation... worked like a charm