I'm trying to write a script to make sure a certain hotfix is installed. On one of our test computers running Windows 8.1, get-hotfix returns an incomplete list of hotfixes:

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Yet there are tons of patches showing in the Programs and Features control panel:

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All of our other test machines, including others installed with Windows 8.0 and 8.1, work fine. Any idea why this is? How can I get a complete list of hotfixes from Powershell?

Edit: wmic qfe list only shows the same four hotfixes as get-hotfix as well.

  • Thanks @PJMahoney -- I tried those suggestions without luck. get-wmiobject -class win32_quickfixengineering shows the same results as get-hotfix. Nov 18, 2015 at 21:04

3 Answers 3


I believe the Get-Hotfix commandlet leverages the Win32_QuickFixEngineering WMI class to list Windows Updates, but only returns updates supplied by Component Based Servicing (CBS). Updates supplied by the Microsoft Windows Installer (MSI) or the Windows update site are not returned by Get-Hotfix/Win32_QuickFixEngineering.

You can try using the Windows Update API through PowerShell like in the below example. Give this a shot and let us know if it shows the missing updates.

$Session = New-Object -ComObject Microsoft.Update.Session
$Searcher = $Session.CreateUpdateSearcher()
$Searcher.Search("IsInstalled=1").Updates | ft -a Date,Title

EDIT: To search through the results, you can use the Where-Object commandlet (or alias Where) and filter for a specific hotfix:

$Searcher.Search("IsInstalled=1").Updates | Where {$_.Title -like "*KB2760587*"} | ft date,title
  • Thanks @bentek! That does it. Since I'm pretty new to Powershell, would you mind also showing me a good way to query those results to find if a specific hotfix is included? Nov 18, 2015 at 21:09
  • Also, is this less compatible with older Windows versions than get-hotfix? Nov 18, 2015 at 21:40
  • 1
    Edited my answer to include a simple query for a specific hotfix.
    – bentek
    Nov 19, 2015 at 13:36
  • 1
    It looks like I want to use $Searcher.Search("IsInstalled=1").Updates | ft -a Date,Title instead. Nov 19, 2015 at 20:35
  • 2
    FYI: See also: Microsoft Update Client Install History under social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/… for a different version of this solution (for me the above failed, but it led me to this Technet link which worked).
    – JohnLBevan
    Nov 30, 2016 at 14:02

You need to use different ways to list the updates installed by different methods. like installed by wsus or configmgr

Take a look here



If someday someone needs to get the full update list using Python, I've written in implementation that checks for windows updates via COM, WMI and registry so we don't miss an update based on it's install method.

Install with:

pip install windows_tools.updates


from windows_tools.updates import get_windows_updates

for update in get_windows_updates(filter_duplicates=True):

You can also remove the duplicate filter (AV engine updates etc) with get_windows_updates(filter_multiple=False)

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