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This question already has an answer here:

Today I installed a fresh copy of Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1. For some reason, it will just not update. I try to run Windows Update but all it does is hangs at "Checking for updates". I even let it sit there for 4 hours and it didn't do anything.

I looked for multiple solutions and none of them worked. I've reset windows update, I've done sfc /scannow, I've done the dism.exe command, I installed "Windows6.1-KB947821-v34-x64", but nothing seems to fix it.

I downloaded a windows diagnostic tool for windows update, and it did come up with an error that which it failed to fix: "0x800f08".

I don't know what to do at this point. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

marked as duplicate by Journeyman Geek Nov 4 '15 at 23:06

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • Have you run virus and malware scans? Go to Windows Update window and look at Update History. Does it indicate what update is failing? Any error messages in Event Viewer? – CharlieRB Aug 24 '15 at 16:28
  • There is a few security updates that failed but I already installed them manually. – Donavon Aug 24 '15 at 16:35
  • How about viruses and malware? – CharlieRB Aug 24 '15 at 16:37
  • It's a fresh install, I'm almost sure there would be no viruses or malware. – Donavon Aug 24 '15 at 16:39
  • use WSUSoffline to download missing updates: download.wsusoffline.net – magicandre1981 Aug 24 '15 at 17:09
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Fix

Microsoft released a Windows Update Client Update which is part of the July 2016 Update Rollup to fix the long hang at Windows Update scan.

This update contains some improvements to Windows Update Client in Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1). This includes the following:

  • An optimization that addresses long scan time for updates that's reported on some computers.
  1. Download:

  2. Stop Windows Update service. This speeds up the setup of MSU updates. This can be done from the command line, or from the service manager window.

  3. Try the downloaded update and see if it speeds up the installation of Updates.

To be able to install the update you first need to install the April 2015 servicing stack update for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 update (again, stop WU service before trying to install the MSU).

Download (April 2015 servicing stack update):

32 Bit

64 Bit

Workaround 1

If this is still not helping to search for new updates, use WSUSOffline to get all the updates.

  • Just tried to install this fix and windows decided to check for updates before running the installer #headdesk – jon_two Apr 20 '16 at 9:21
  • @jon_two stop the Windows Update service before making a double click on the MSU file: superuser.com/a/1057487/174557. Also Microsoft released a new client in March 2016: support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3138612 – magicandre1981 Apr 20 '16 at 15:23
  • Thanks - I just rebooted and it seems to be updating ok now. I'm using a VM that hasn't been run for almost a year, so there are plenty of updates to get through! – jon_two Apr 21 '16 at 7:58
  • 1
    The July update is available now. support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3172605 – Pedram Aug 22 '16 at 7:58
  • I just spent couple of days in company of old laptop with 2GB of RAM and can confirm that issue seems to be x64 + poor hardware/insufficient RAM specific. All solutions listed above didn't help to obtain updates while using x64 Windows 7 SP1 Home Basic - really tried them (even twice). Not counting waiting for 4 days as solution I even want to try. But as soon as I switched to x86 edition + manually installed latest "Windows Update Client for Windows 7" it all works. – Mikhail Sep 13 '16 at 11:21
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I've seen it take 8+ hours to finally figure them all out and install the first round.

It'll eat all your RAM, and then starts swapping to disk like mad, which can make it take even longer. So if you have like 2GB (or less) of RAM and a slow HDD, the issue will be compounded.

Install this update first, and try again.

Windows Update Client for Windows 7: June 2015

This update addresses an issue in which system performance can be decreased during scans. This issue has the greatest effect on computers that have a small amount of physical memory.

Win7 has known issues now that the update catalogue is so huge (the above fix is supposed to help address that).

Otherwise, let it sit trying overnight and see if it's advanced come morning. Note: Be sure to set your power settings to make sure the system doesn't go into sleep mode.

  • 1
    I confirm that this was the solution for me. It was for a laptop and apparently going to sleep or hibenate interrupt the process in such a way that it is restarted from zero when being woken up. Thus my laptop never stayed on long enough for the process to complete before I prevented it to go to sleep. – AProgrammer Nov 4 '15 at 9:58
  • When leaving it to check overnight, please be sure to change your power settings not to put the pc/laptop to sleep (otherwise it won't do anything either) – davejal Dec 7 '15 at 11:59
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    I can confirm this. I was convinced that it was stuck in some kind of loop doing nothing. But then I let it run, forgot about it, and I think after 6+ hours it finally finished. Then I observed the same on another machine. Not new but also not too old computers (~3-5 years). I couldn't believe it myself. So takes a couple of days to completely patch a new install. – TJJ Apr 1 '16 at 15:25
  • It is hard to believe it should take this long but waiting overnight worked in my case. I rarely use the Windows installation I had troubles with. I expect the less frequently the updates are run, the longer it takes. – Steven C. Howell Jul 24 '16 at 12:00

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