Found numerous reported problems on Internet, and a few fixes but none I have tried helped. Windows update, as well as download a newer version of IE, do not work. It just looks like the update never stops trying.


It took me a while to cut this one down. I created a blog post on my website with detailed instructions and links to the updates you'll need to download. It'll take you about 10 minutes and you should have Windows Updates working again. http://www.geekallday.com/windows-xp-sp3-update-issues/

I'll also list the updates here that are required:

  • Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5
  • Internet Explorer 8
  • Update for Windows XP (KB927891)
  • Windows Update Agent 3.0
  • Security Update for Windows XP (KB2510531)
  • Security Update for Internet Explorer 8 for Windows XP (KB2797052)
  • Security Update for Internet Explorer for Windows XP (KB2799329)
  • Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer 8 for Windows XP (KB2898785)

Here are the steps on what order and how to install these updates.

I recommend installing the updates in order; some updates are required to be installed before you can move on to the next update.

Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 The First update you’ll install is Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5. Accept the agreement and press next until it starts installing. This update can take some time to install so please be patient.

Internet Explorer 8 The next update you’ll install is Internet Explorer 8. Most fresh installs of Windows XP SP3 come with Internet Explorer 6 by default. You’ll need to make sure you “uncheck” install updates as searching for updates is still non functional at this point in time. I suggest you reboot your PC after the installation of Internet Explorer 8.

Update for Windows XP (KB927891) This is the update to fix or prevent the SVCHOST.exe 99% CPU usage issue. First thing you need to do is make sure your Automatic Updates is set to off.. To check the status of your Automatic Updates go to your Control Panel, Switch to Classic View, double click on Automatic Updates and make sure it’s checked to off. If you had to turn Automatic Updates off, I recommend rebooting your PC. After the reboot go ahead and install this update. I would leave Automatic Updates off until the end of this fix; once you have Windows Updates working again I’ve had no issues turning it back on.

Windows Update Agent 3.0 Install Windows Update Agent 3.0. This update will fix the Error you get when trying to run windows Updates. If you attempt to run windows Updates again you’ll be prompted to install the latest addition of Windows Update. Go ahead and proceed with this update. The update will install successfully but you may notice that Windows Update will continue to loop while searching for updates. If that’s the case you can proceed with the next set of updates.

Internet Explorer 8 Security Updates If you’re still having issues with Windows Updates looping while checking for updates you should continue with the installation of the remaining 4 Internet Explorer 8 security updates. After installation of all updates you should now have a working Windows Update session.


First make sure your date and time are correct and in the correct timezone.

Then download this:

Tweaking.com - Windows Repair (All in One) v2.1.0 Released

Install and run it. under repairs uncheck everything but windows updates. Run it and you will probably have to reboot. after rebooting try again and it should work.

Your Answer

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy, and that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.