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Windows 7: Windows 7 stuck on checking for updates

12 Dec 2015   #1
VsUK

Win 7 64bit
 
 
Windows 7 stuck on checking for updates

I'm a experienced user & know my way around the PC both HW & SW wise. However I have come up against a problem & I have tried everything to fix it to no avail.

I had to re install Win 7 on my laptop which is a pretty modern one. Anyways installed win 7 Ultimate, activated without problems. So I attempted to check for updates & nothing happens. It is constantly stuck on Checking for updates with the green slider moving as usual.

I have tried the Microsoft Update fixit tool which told me problems with installing updates fixed, then I run again it says Not fixed & then again fixed!

I've ran sfc /scannow which didn't show any problems & I don't imagine it would because its a fresh install on a formatted HDD. Its a SP1 edition & I'm used to a bit of a wait usually for detect all updates but I have formatted, re installed & left the machine to check for updates 3 times now for around 3 hours with it still checking for updates.

Any suggestions? Oh, I've stopped the windows update service & deleted the folder contents of SoftwareDist with no effect.

Thanks in advance!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
12 Dec 2015   #2
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

You are stuck in the forever Windows 7 update mode.
Let me explain.
Every sense W-10 came out Windows 7 Update has become very very slow.
If every thing on you system is correct it could take from 8 hours to 48 hours to download updates. Their will over 200 of them after a Clean Install.

I think a lot of it depends on what Microsoft server is being searched.
Some are very busy and some are less busy.

Some times when your system is still Searching you can reboot and try again.
If your lucky you will get a Microsoft server that is less busy.
The only cure I know of is just patients. Just leave your computer on and wait.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2015   #3
VsUK

Win 7 64bit
 
 

That's something I long suspected & I do find disgusting to be honest. I have a laptop which I upgraded to windows 10 & its far from being ideal enough for me to update all my machines. Windows 7 is more than good enough for me & for my needs. I came from Linux to widows 7 after moving to Linux due to the Vista disgrace. Now I'm considering moving back!

I like windows as its more widely supported so I don't need to write my own software to make things happen. But if you ask me, Microsoft has lost its identity & user friendly approach because since the release of windows 10, they've behaved just like Apple!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

13 Dec 2015   #4
VsUK

Win 7 64bit
 
 

Update.. My conversation with Microsoft Tech Rep!

Quote:
Hi, thanks for visiting Answer Desk! I'm Ann R.
1:50 pm
Ann R.
How may I help you?

1:51 pm
Me
Hi, This is regarding windows 7 updates. I am wanting to know firstly, why have you reduced the server priority for windows 7 users to update there systems?

1:51 pm
Me
because I don't like windows 10 so Im sticking with windows 7. But I have just had to reinstall windows from fresh, a SP1 edition & its been checking for updates for 24 hours now!

1:52 pm
Me
secondly.. do you have the ability to download all windows 7 updates so we dont need to run windows update which has become useless no thanks to microsoft!

1:52 pm
Me
as from what I know, you have a duty to either provide in bulk download windows 7 updates or give a decent service to obtain those updates from your servers!

1:53 pm
Me
something of which, you're not providing!

1:53 pm
Me
as I find requiring to leave any system on for more than 24 hours checking for updates is highly unacceptable!
1:55 pm
Ann R.
Sorry for this inconvenience. Let me try my best to help you. We are not reducing the server priority for windows 7 users to update their systems
.
1:56 pm
Ann R.
There are some possible cause why sometimes it took a long time to check for updates.

1:57 pm
Me
well its all over the web on forums. Ever since windows 10 release, people who are sticking with windows 7 have found it extremely lengthy to check for updates!

1:57 pm
Me
Also, I am a hardware/software engineer by trade so I'm a highly skilled PC user so don't put it down to error's to system because they are none!

1:58 pm
Ann R.
That's not true because through windows updates you can get the free upgrade to windows 10. If I may ask, have you tried to do something about this lengthy of checking for updates?

2:02 pm
Me
Yes, I have explored every known option from resetting windows updates. Using your own windows update fixit tools & even as drastic as a fresh install of windows which I have done 3 times. Its a modern laptop with no problems what so ever. Reason for the re install fresh was upgrading the SSD from a 128GB to a 500GB!

2:04 pm
Me
you only need to google windows 7 update sticks on checking for updates & you will find hundreds & i'm sure there's more as not everyone posts online!

2:04 pm
Me
I manually downloaded a update I know it will need & it detects all installed updates fine! System is error free!

2:05 pm
Me
Even on my main desktop im speaking to you with is error free but 2 months ago I reinstalled windows & it took 37 hours for it to finally detect updates to download!

2:07 pm
Ann R.
I see, have you tried to manually reset windows updates or run a batch file for it.

2:09 pm
Me
yup multiple times. No error's found. No problems found & the tool which searches for updates after its checked for errors also fails to detect any as it sticks on search. All services are running & working as is!

After getting passed the 200+ updates it detects & you have downloaded & install them all works as should. Its just getting the system to detect those initial first bulk of updates!

2:11 pm
Ann R.
Okay. Have you tried to restart the background intelligence transfer service and check for the updates again?

2:12 pm
Me
up, as I said I have checked all services. I even stopped services, deleted contents from SoftwareDistribution & re started all services with no effect! Trust me, there's no error with my system that has never had this problem before because I have not had to do this since windows 10 came out! But its happening to a lot of people as we speak. Forums are full of people asking for help because they cant update windows 7 from new installs

2:15 pm
Ann R.
How about disabling your antivirus and firewall?

2:15 pm
Me
don't have any installed checking
2:17 pm
Ann R.
And also run a scan with Deployment Image Servicing and Management command?

2:18 pm
Me
first time I did, 2nd time I re installed I didnt & 3rd time same with difference
s
2:18 pm
Me
yes but I shouldnt need to do this on a modern system which has had windows installed 3 times!

2:19 pm
Me
also to a novice user, these would be like reading mandarin. Windows updates shouldn't take this long to detect updates!

2:21 pm
Me
they finally do in the end. Its the length of time it takes to do so thats the problem

2:21 pm
Me
if support is going away from Windows 7, It would be a good thing to provide a downloadable ISO that runs & installs all updates offline just as windows update would online. Would save people time & the need for a reliable internet connection!

2:22 pm
System
Chat has ended.

2:25 pm

She if she was a she ended the chat! Clearly was attempting to push the blame on my system & not their service! I find this level of service disgusting!

I think a tool is needed to allow the downloading & keeping of all windows 7 updates so we can cut out the disgrace of windows update service which has determinately pushed anyone not using windows 10 to the back!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2015   #5
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Me and millions more understand your frustration.
I did expect a rep from Microsoft to deny that they were having a problem at their end.

They expect us to believe that all of a sudden after W-10 came out, all Windows 7 computers were at fault with these slow update problem.
Do they really think we are all the dumb and gullible?

VsUK I don't have the training or expertise in computers science as you do but as a simple self taught home user I'm not that gullible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2015   #6
Ztruker

Windows 10 Pro X64
 
 

I've clean installed Windows 7, various versions, on at least 15 computers in the last 2-3 months, including the one I'm working on now, a Toshiba A665D-S6051 laptop. In every case it takes days to finally get Windows Update to download and install updates after the install has completed. Nothing I have done has had any affect what so ever on this problem. SURT, DISM, SFC, SoftwareDistribution cleanup, nothing.

This is definitely intentional on Microsoft's part to encourage force people to move to Windows 10. I like Windows 10 and run it on a Desktop and two Laptops at home but this sabotage of the Windows 7 update process by Microsoft should be illegal.

I agree with VsUK, an alternate way to download the Windows 7 updates (and install them) is needed.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2015   #7
VsUK

Win 7 64bit
 
 

Well after 39 hours & 34 minutes exactly from when I first initiated the update on a fresh install on a laptop, it gave me a list of updates which was way too long!

Also just to let people know, I never used 3rd party software for updating so this was new to me! Anyway I discovered a very nice bit of software called AutoPatcher. You can obtain it from here AutoPatcher

It gets the ball rolling & I tested it on its effectiveness on another laptop this time a older Aspire 5720 with 4GB DDR2, windows 7 64bit but with an upgraded CPU from the T5250 to T7200. It started updates within 5 hours after I first started downloading & installing with this tool.

It has instructions & so forth you can find on the forum. But it basically downloads the files externally of windows update directly from Microsoft Servers as if you were manually downloading them 1 by 1 yourself. You just select what you want & then it stores them all in a folder you can burn for later use on other machines. I have to say, I was very impressed with this, although it does get stuck & hang now again but I think thats down to the old laptop used. But simply restarting it 2 or 3 times I got a pop up saying I need to reboot my system to complete the updates & when I did I was presented with the usual please don't power off blah blah blah 1 out of 211 updates installing. This is within 5 hours so not the most simple of ways but it allows you to store what it downloads onto a USB or DVD for re using them again on any machine running the version of updates you downloaded from it.

If you do need some tutorial on how to use specifically feel free to ask & I will whip up some stills to explain the basics!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Dec 2015   #8
Ztruker

Windows 10 Pro X64
 
 

What updates need to be downloaded?

I have a list from my Windows 7 system that has been running for about 5 years now, generated by

wmic qfe list brief /format:texttablewsys > "%USERPROFILE%\hotfix.txt"


that I found here: Quick and Easy Way to List All the Windows Updates Installed on Your System

I used Autopatcher back with XP and Vista when I was playing with nLite and vLite but that was a long time ago. Guess I'll take a look.

Many thanks for the suggestion.

Edit: Ah, AP handles that very nicely. In the process of downloading 273 updates for Win 7 SP1 X64.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2015   #9
VsUK

Win 7 64bit
 
 

Well I have just been smacked in the face this morning. I left laptop shutting down installing over 200 updates. Turned it on this morning & now I get the msg. Failure configuring Windows Updates. Reverting changes..... I mean if this undo's all the 200+ updates it installed I will be seriously annoyed!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2015   #10
CarlSD

Win 7 Professional 64 (Main PC)/Win 7 Home Premium 32 (Laptop)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by VsUK View Post
Well I have just been smacked in the face this morning. I left laptop shutting down installing over 200 updates. Turned it on this morning & now I get the msg. Failure configuring Windows Updates. Reverting changes..... I mean if this undo's all the 200+ updates it installed I will be seriously annoyed!
Unfortunately, this seems to happen a lot lately when you try to download and install all of the post SP1 updates for Windows 7 at the same time. Happened to a couple of my friends just recently.

Try downloading just the security updates to start with - I start with all non .NET security updates then move on to .NET updates then Internet Explorer updates then the optional updates. You'll probably see a few more security updates appear after you start installing the optional ones.

There's quite a few restarts involved in all this which is very time consuming. But, it seems like it's the only sure way to succeed these days with so many post SP1 updates.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows 7 stuck on checking for updates




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