Failure configuring Windows updates. Reverting changes

If your Windows 10/8/7 system gives you a message Failure configuring Windows updates, Reverting changes, Do not turn off your computer message, then this post may help you troubleshoot the issue. This is a generic error that might appear any time a Windows update fails.

Failure configuring Windows updates

Failure configuring updates. Reverting changes. Do not  turn off your computer

If you are facing this issue, your computer will normally take 20-30 minutes to revert the changes. Here are a few steps you may want to try and see if it helps resolve your problem.

1] First, you should try and restart your Windows computer and then try to install Windows Updates again. See if this helps.

2] If it does not, then run the Windows Update Troubleshooter. Although Windows includes a built-in troubleshooter, download one from there as it includes more fixes.

3] Perform a System Restore operation and then try again.

4] Boot into Safe Mode, Run msconfig.exe, select the Services tab, select Hide all Microsoft services and Disable all and Exit. Now restart your computer and run Windows Update.

5] Start your computer in Clean Boot State and see if you can now install the Windows Updates. Installing Windows updates in a clean boot state prevents them being blocked by some Windows Services and software – including security software.

6] Navigate to C:\Windows\WinSxS\ folder, search for a pending.xml file and rename it. You may even delete it. This will allow Windows Update to delete pending tasks and build a fresh new update check. See if this helps.



7] Navigate to C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download folder and delete the contents of Software Distribution folder. Restart your computer and try now.

8] Run System File Checker.

9] Use the Deployment Imaging and Servicing Management (DISM) tool.

Run DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Scanhealth  first.

Then run DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth to repair your Windows Image.

Once the scan is completed, restart and try again.

10] View your Windows Update History and remove any recent update which may have potentially caused this issue.

Open Settings > Windows Update > View update history.

11] Repair your Windows installation. Some of you may want to consider a Refresh or Reset operation. OEM users may want to consider a factory reset.

Stuck in a reboot loop

If your computer gets into an endless reboot loop, try to get into Safe Mode or access Advanced Boot Options. Here you can open a command prompt windows or system restore or perform an Automatic Repair. Windows 7 users may want to consider repairing Windows 7.

Let us know if anything helped you or if you have other suggestions.

Also see: We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes.

Some generic links which can help you troubleshoot Windows Update errors and problems:

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.