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I have an XP SP3 workstation where windows update seems to have stopped working properly.

Going to "update history" in windows update shows that the error is:

Installation Failure 

Error Code: 0x8007001F

I have run malwarebytes and Microsoft Security Essentials scans, which have come up clean.

I attempted to use microsoft's "fix it" tool for windows update, but that didn't appear to do anything (the "loading" progress bar was displayed, then it disappeared). I also tried the manual reset instructions, but that was unsuccessful as well.

Any other suggestions?

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I would just reinstall Windows XP at this point. – Ramhound Jun 14 '12 at 13:47
@Ramhound That's pointless, there is no need to reinstall xp. – HackToHell Jun 14 '12 at 14:21
@HackToHell that link doesn't show a verified solution, and the microsoft article mentioned in the post doesn't show how it relates to that error code... it only shares a failure to update. But most importantly, the repair mentioned in that MS article is for Windows 98 and Windows ME, not Windows XP – Bon Gart Jun 14 '12 at 14:36
I may have mistakenly copied & pasted the wrong link. I had a number of them open at the same time. – Force Flow Jun 14 '12 at 19:23

The key here is the error code.

error: 0x8007001f, A device is not functioning

MS has a specific fix for this error in how it relates to a video capture card. Just pointing out how that error code is not specific and limited to just your issue.

Either this was you, or someone else had this SAME problem, and posted about it Yesterday at Microsoft's Answers site. They got advice, but there is no confirmation that the advice worked. So, you might not be alone in this issue.

Here is a long thread about someone who lost sound AND had your issue.. and there is some very detailed repair work that is suggested

Here is someone who is getting this error when they installed a program and tried to use System Restore.

Someone else reports that error with a server installation, when attempting to save specific data.

... and here's a thread about someone with that error code, and a video capture system...

What's my point in mentioning all of that? If they have anything in common, it seems to be related to writing data to a hard drive. No, I'm not saying that your drive is failing, but the error of

error: 0x8007001f, A device is not functioning

seems to point to a device not functioning... or at least, not functioning as it is supposed to for a short amount of time. Whether it is due to an infection, or a drive not being able to write information, or a video capture card hiccuping 1 time out of 10, no one seems to be able to determine yet.

You say this is a workstation. Can you take it out of service long enough for a full Chkdsk, including a surface scan? Not that this would take days... just an hour or so... but you really should try to determine or eliminate the drive as a suspect here.

As a side note, how long has this problem been going on? What happened with the computer before this problem started?

In the end, there is no single fix for that error, because there is apparently no single cause of it. And yes, it might end up that reinstalling XP becomes a viable solution. Just not the first one or next one.

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I greatly appreciate the detailed and comprehensive post. Unfortunately, none of those proposed solutions ended up solving the issue. Considering that I've already wasted enough time on this issue, it's time to play the reformat game instead. – Force Flow Jun 14 '12 at 19:22
@ForceFlow they weren't proposed solutions, and I obviously failed to make that clear enough. They were simply examples of how the error code you were given that applied to your issue was ALSO applied to many more different issues, all of which seemed to have Writing to your Hard Drive a common element. So, the one thing I DID suggest, that being performing a Chkdsk with a surface scan... how did that work out? Oh, and the part of my answer where I asked you what happened before you noticed this error... what about that? – Bon Gart Jun 14 '12 at 19:30
@ForceFlow because if it is an issue with your hard drive, that could interfere with reformatting and reinstalling Windows, which could in turn cause you to waste even more time. – Bon Gart Jun 14 '12 at 19:31
chkdsk was clean. Nothing out of the ordinary happened with the workstation that I'm aware of. I am not the primary user of the workstation, so I couldn't tell you. I did attempt to restore to a point a few weeks prior, but that didn't help. After the reformat, none of the issues resurfaced. – Force Flow Jun 19 '12 at 13:46

I installed windows Xp Pro Sp3 and when i started to update windows i got same errors and windows was not updating at all despite many methods i used but here is one method i used and i was able to install windows updates. follow these steps (Time consuming but it will work)

  1. install a fresh copy of windows xp pro sp3 and install system drivers especially Network to connect to internet.
  2. download IE 8 and install it. (Reboot)
  3. download .Net framework 3.5 or greater install it(i used 3.5). (Reboot)
  4. download shockwave, flash player, install it. (Reboot)
  5. download MicrosoftFixit.wu.LB.148304778149291574.1.1.Run install,follow instructions when done then reboot.
  6. now click on start menu, click on windows update. (in my case when i clicked on windows update and it started to scan then it took more then 1 hour and i didn't touch anything else but left the pc alone to do its work) make sure you are connected to internet.

i hope this will help as i used the same method to get the windows updates.

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

I ended up reformatting and installing a fresh operating system.

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