I bought new laptop and first thing I wanted to do was upgrading it to Windows 10 but whenever I use Windows Update -> Check updates it's just stuck on checking updates (5 dots are flying in and out whole time and nothing ever happens).

Last update installed is KB3000850 in 2014-11-21 (it's new laptop)

Last update check: Never Updates installed: Never

I don't get any error. Nothing happens at all (as I said before dots are just flying and out for 30 minutes now).

  • You can give a look to the answers of this question. Even in the one that suggest to remain with Linux (I admit, it's mine }:-) ) there are many references on how to update, to do the fresh install of Windows 10 and how to verify that the copy of Windows 10 is activated. (I know it is long ... the links are at the end). :-) – Hastur Jul 22 '16 at 13:24
  • The alternative to just waiting would be to configure your system to use WSUS, then run WSUS Offline Update, and download the updates that have been released since 2014 for Windows 8.1. You should be able to install the updates, if you can't, that would be a different question. – Ramhound Jul 22 '16 at 13:30
  • Of course there better ways (in my opionion) to upgrade to Windows 10 other then through Windows Update. I would just download the .ISO, mount the .ISO, and upgrade to Windows10 using that method. – Ramhound Jul 22 '16 at 13:30
  • Instructions for WSUS Offline. You just download the updates with ` UpdateGenerator.exe ` and then install the updates with UpdateInstaller.exe – Ramhound Jul 22 '16 at 13:41
  • have you tried the update that I posted in my answer? – magicandre1981 Aug 1 '16 at 16:22

I had the identical problem. The problem is that the Windows Update Agent is out of date and does not update itself first as it is supposed to do.

To fix this you first download the most recent Windows Update Agent for your OS:

Note: Microsoft support kept referencing an outdated page for kb949104 which is NOT the most current WU Agent.

To update the Windows Update Agent:

  • Open an elevated command prompt.
  • Stop the Windows Update Agent by typing net stop wuauserv and hit Enter.
  • Run the installer you downloaded earlier.
  • Start the service by typing net start wuauserv.
  • Restart your computer.

Windows 8.1 should now update itself and then you can run the W10 update. It may take a few days and a few restarts for W8.1 to fully update but you should start seeing results in the Window update history file.

You can try manually installing the updates but i found it best to just leave the machine on for a couple of days and restart as requested, and let it do its own thing.

It would be very nice if the Windows Update Agent actually updated itself, but it doesn't sometimes, and so you have to go through all this to make it work the way you expect it to.

  • can't download that update from Microsoft site for some reason, gives error that they are sorry – Dmitriy Jan 16 '17 at 17:16

Very important to Joel's answer is, that sometimes stopping wuauserv is not sufficient. I had to set Windows Update to Never check for updates (not recommended) and then reboot. Without this i can't even install KB3138615 MSU on fresh Windows 8.1.

In my case proper instruction was:

Then check for updates works perfectly.

  • Thanks for this addendum. I had already tried Joel's answer (from another post) and it failed. I was ready to give up until reading this. – vanmelle Apr 12 '19 at 2:49

Just wait a bit.

Over the past two/three months, this has been happening on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 systems for me (around 30 PC's over the two months). Sometimes it takes 2 hours to find updates, sometimes it takes 24 hours. Just leave it checking for updates.

If you are on a time limit for some reason (like I sometimes am), or you want to try and speed things up, I use this tool. It will download the updates (directly from Microsoft, not through the update client). You can then save this and use it in an offline scenario.

  • That sucks thanks for answer. I'll leave question open. Maybe someone knows how to force Windows Update to work quicker. – Gunnm Jul 22 '16 at 13:12
  • @Gunnm Alright, no problem. – Bitten Fleax Jul 22 '16 at 13:13
  • 2
    @Gunnm I posted which update you have to install to make WU faster – magicandre1981 Jul 22 '16 at 15:09
  • I tried this before, still did not work for me :( Hopefully, it does for him. – Bitten Fleax Jul 22 '16 at 15:49

Try Windows Update Troubleshooter for Windows 7/8 as described by Microsoft here, and then check for updates again. It resets windows update and fixes problems due to damaged or not properly configured Windows Update infrastructure.


Install this update:

Installing and searching for updates is slow and high CPU usage occurs in Windows 8.1

Download it, stop the Windows Update service (This can be done from the command line, or from the service manager window) and make a double click to install it.

After a reboot Windows Update should detect the missing updates.

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