We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes

If you receive We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes, Don’t turn off your computer message, and your Windows 10/8/7 PC is stuck in a loop, then this post may help you. This is a generic error that might appear any time a Windows update fails.

While updating one of my dual-boot Windows 10 laptops, I saw this screen. If your system can undo the changes, it is good; you will be able to at least boot into your Windows desktop, from where you can troubleshoot your Windows Update issues. But in my case, the laptop just went into an endless reboot loop.

I let it reboot a couple of times, to see if it would sort itself out – but no luck there! This is what I did to resolve my issue.

We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes

We couldnt complete the updates

Generally speaking, 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.

If you are on a dual-boot system, things are a bit easy. In the dual-boot OS selection screen where you select the OS to boot into, you will see a Change defaults or choose other options.

Select it, then Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup settings. Here press 4 on your keyboard to select the Enable Safe Mode option. This will reboot your PC into Safe Mode. You can read this post on Advanced startup options in Windows 10 if you need more details.

If you have only a single operating system installed on your computer, then you need to find a way to boot Windows 10 in safe mode. The options include:

  1. Press Shift and click Restart to boot you into the Advanced startup options screen
  2. Open Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced startup > Restart now.
  3. Type shutdown /r /o in an elevated CMD prompt to reboot your computer into Advanced Boot options or Recovery console.

If you had already enabled the F8 key earlier, things are easier as you and press F8 while booting, to enter Safe Mode; else we have a situation here. You may have to boot into Windows 10 with your Installation Media or Recovery Drive. Select Repair your computer and the Advanced startup options will appear.

Well, once you have got out of the reboot loop and entered Safe Mode of your desktop, you have three options:

1] Run Command Prompt as administrator. In the CMD box that appears on the computer screen, enter the following strings of text, one at a time, and hit Enter.

net stop wuauserv
net stop bits

Now browse to the C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution folder and delete all the files and folders inside.

Restart your computer. It should be able to boot to Desktop.

I used this first method, and it worked for me. On a normal restart, I ran Windows Update again, and this time they installed fine for me.

2] Open Control Panel > Programs and Features > View installed updates. Here you may uninstall the offending update which you may have installed recently, just before your problem started.

Alternatively, to view your Windows Update History and remove any recent update which may have potentially caused this issue, open Settings > Windows Update > View update history.

3] Use System Restore to restore your computer back to a prior good point.

Let us know if any of this worked for you or if you have any other ideas.

Also read: Failure configuring Windows updates. Reverting changes.

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, 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.