Fix: Your Windows install couldn’t be completed error

A large proportion of Windows 10/8.1 users, at the time of upgrading to Windows thought the upgrade to the latest version of the OS would be seamless.  While most had a smooth experience, there were some who found themselves stuck with and error. Every time they attempt to complete the download of the Windows 8.1 install, they were  presented with the error – Your Windows 8.1 install couldn’t be completed. Something happened, and the install of Windows cant’ be completed.

Your Windows install couldn’t be completed

I came across a useful blog post on TechNet, by David Dixon. Try this method, I am sure that it will be able to help you.

Your Windows 8.1 install couldn’t be completed

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

CMD image 1

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


If the files are in use, restart your device. After rebooting, run the commands above again. Your Windows Store App needs to be closed by the way, so do not start it.

Now you will be able to delete the files from the mentioned Software Distribution folder.

Now in the Command Prompt window, type the following commands one at a time, and hit Enter:

net start wuauserv

net start bits

CMD prompt

Now open the Windows Store.  You should see something like this:

Windows Store screen

Once you see it, try the upgrading process all over again.

Install screen

Once the download is complete, your machine may reboot and begin the update process. If all works well, you should see the screen messages that you saw when you first installed Windows 8 on your machine. Depending on your preference, you may be asked to sign in using your Microsoft account and select your color preferences again. This indicates, you have successfully installed Windows 10/8.1.

Let us know if this helped you install Windows.

Image source and credit: TechNet Blogs.

Also see:

  1. Something happened, and the Windows couldn’t be installed. Error code 0×80070714
  2. Error 0x000000C4 Unable To Install Windows Using Virtualization
  3. The update is not applicable to your computer error when installing Windows
  4. Windows 8.1 cant be installed on VirtualBox, CompareExchange128 Processor Incompatibilty
  5. Error Code 0×80240031 while Upgrading Windows.
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.


  1. Amit

    nice post.. thank you.





    That’s Great to know that windows 7 and 8 can be installed as a Dual OS.Could you please Share the detail steps and/ or the Software to install both Operating System in the Single PC ?


    Thank you sir, for your immediate response. I hope the link will really prove handy for me.

  5. JeP

    I’m sorry, I just got a new error code
    I followed the guide but got the following message after reboot

    It was not possible to complete the update to windows 8.1
    We have restored the previous version of windows on this PC

    0xC1900101 – 0x30018

  6. Open Command Prompt as Admin. Run the following command:

    DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

    and hit Enter.

    Details here:

    Restart if asked for. Now try upgrading again. Hope it helps!

  7. JeP

    Unfortunately, I got the same error code.

    There’s probably an ISO fiel to download sooner or later

  8. T Cheng

    After I attempted to update my Win 8 on my Dell 8500, I seen the following message on my screen:
    Couldn’t update to Windows 8.1
    Sorry we couldn’t complete the update to Windows 8.1. We’ve restored your previous versions of Windows
    The Dell Tech Support could not fix the problem. Help!

  9. Gilbert Jones

    I have a different problem…..after upgrading to Windows 8.1,my pc will no longer automatically go to sleep,which it did just fine before the 8.1 upgrade….I am upgrading a practically new HP Envy…1414…AMD 3.5GHZ six core processor,10 gigs of DDR3 ram…1 TB hard drive.And,YES,I have updated all drivers available from HP.Any suggestions?

  10. Alex Rodriguez

    I have a different problem. I installed update on my HP Laptop. However, after the upgrade each time I woke it from sleep mode it thinks that it’s a tablet and loads the screen upside down. I corrected each time the ctl-alt-up arrow, but it reverts back. The only way to correct is doing a reboot but it repeats itself once it goes to sleep mode. I ended up having to do a refresh and go back to Win 8.0. Must be some incompatibility with the video driver but there’s no update to the driver at this time.

  11. Jason Padilla

    i did everything you said to do and it still wont let me down load it please help

  12. Saurabh Darade

    thank you very much man!
    It really works! Perfect work!
    I was trying to find those files but I didn’t know the location>SoftwwareDistribution..
    i was fed up with MS store, again thank you very much!

  13. The Evil One

    Works now – thank you SO much!!

  14. Uptix

    I spent four days trying to get update 8.1 to work. Tried all manner of suggestions from various sources. Wish I had happened on this solution first! It went like a breeze. Thank You

  15. Jeffrey

    When I open the store as u said, they show the message:
    Your pc isn’t connected to internet. To use the store, connect to internet and try again?
    What should I do??

  16. vladimirpityk

    following this the update dessapear from store -.- cant do nothing to bring it back, restore, refresh, nothing works …..

  17. Liz

    This didn’t work for me. I’ve tried pretty much everything I can find online to update to 8.1- clean boot, refreshing the computer, making sure windows update has all the newest updates, the method stated on this page, but I ALWAYS get error code 0x802002e. This is extremely frustrating, as this is a brand new laptop, fresh out of the box, and it should not come with these problems on it.

  18. Jose Ramirez

    I’m still getting the same error
    what can I do now?

  19. Mia

    Thanks so much! I am already so frustrated with Windows 8, and my 8.1 update just wouldn’t work. Now it’s downloading thank youuu!

  20. Glad to see it helped. 🙂

  21. Are you sure you followed the instructions correctly? Or would you like to try once more?

  22. Connie

    This helped, thanks! 🙂

  23. Andy H

    I followed the instructions but still cannot upgrade from windows 8 to windows 8.1.

    I went to the command prompt and ran sfc /scannow in the cbs.log file I have the following errors.

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006dd [SR] Repairing 1 components

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006de [SR] Beginning Verify and Repair transaction

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 0

    Found: {l:32 b:yuNoeY8oXuCshjAskCNhLO82zVzUI+IjF72wxZRYdx0=} Expected: {l:32 b:n520k714Uu3utHa5JGQ6HQYbZphKhlMWq5pEmfnCDuw=}

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006e0 [SR] Cannot repair member file [l:36{18}]”Amd64CNBJ2530.DPB” of prncacla.inf, Version = 6.2.9200.16430, pA = PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE_AMD64 (9), Culture neutral, VersionScope = 1 nonSxS, PublicKeyToken = {l:8 b:31bf3856ad364e35}, Type = [l:24{12}]”driverUpdate”, TypeName neutral, PublicKey neutral in the store, hash mismatch

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006e1 Hashes for file member SystemRootWinSxSamd64_prncacla.inf_31bf3856ad364e35_6.2.9200.16430_none_fdce12188b615b12Amd64CNBJ2530.DPB do not match actual file [l:36{18}]”Amd64CNBJ2530.DPB” :

    Found: {l:32 b:yuNoeY8oXuCshjAskCNhLO82zVzUI+IjF72wxZRYdx0=} Expected: {l:32 b:n520k714Uu3utHa5JGQ6HQYbZphKhlMWq5pEmfnCDuw=}

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006e2 [SR] Cannot repair member file [l:36{18}]”Amd64CNBJ2530.DPB” of prncacla.inf, Version = 6.2.9200.16430, pA = PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE_AMD64 (9), Culture neutral, VersionScope = 1 nonSxS, PublicKeyToken = {l:8 b:31bf3856ad364e35}, Type = [l:24{12}]”driverUpdate”, TypeName neutral, PublicKey neutral in the store, hash mismatch

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006e3 [SR] This component was referenced by [l:164{82}]”Package_86_for_KB2769165~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~”

    2013-12-29 12:31:03, Info CSI 000006e4 [SR] Repair complete

    Let me know if you have any suggestions. The error I’m getting when i try to install 8.1 is:
    I have downloaded and run apps.diagcab Windows Store Apps Trouble shooter and get the following problems found
    Check for missing or corrupt files
    Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations

    Display adapter drivers might be out of date
    problem with BITS service. The requested service has already been started. More help is available by typing NET HELPMSG2182

  24. AC

    Great, now it wont restart wuauserv due to missing files so I’m in a worse position then before

  25. Restart and runs system file checker – sfc /scannow and see if it helps.

  26. taurayi mandebvu

    Thank you it worked

  27. mrs.hilliard.13

    Thank you so much this is working so far!!

  28. robert

    I keep getting error code:0x080248014

  29. Jennafer

    I couldn’t get past step 1. After I entered “net stop wuauserv” it popped back with something about system error 5 & invalid user. Even after I double-checked to ensure that I was the administrator. What am I doing wrong?

  30. Negru Lucian

    i have done everything you said several times and still won’t let me do it. Gives me the same error. I dont have admin privileges.

  31. I think you do need admin rights.

  32. Megan

    After I tried to insert the second “net start bits” it said “the requested service has already been started.” and still won’t let me install Windows 8.1. Followed all the steps but still didn’t work.

  33. Cris Chico

    thanks ..this worked!

  34. 1TVR1

    Worked a treat – thanks very much!

  35. Abdulkadir Aytekin

    Thanks man!
    It works for me.

    Greetings from Turkey.

  36. Confused

    Hello. I also have followed the instructions in the original post and all of the following instructions to be able to upgrade to Windows 8.1. Do you have any other ideas? I too am regretting having bought this computer with Windows 8. I have tried some 10 or more times to install 8.1. (HP ENVY)

  37. Cameron

    This has driven me crazy! I’ve tried like 3 different fixes to the problem but nothing worked, the download just stays at 0% for 10-20 min and then I get the error code 0x80072.efe. I’ve tried the IT standard off and on again fix, I’ve installed all important and optional updates, checked there were no “hidden updates” was hopeful when I found this fix but still having the same problems. My final approach involved a stern talk informing it that it had 2 options and I sincerely doubted it would be able to learn to fly within the allocated time… it appears to be working now…?

  38. Confused

    So I finally was able to install 8.1 with an HP technician’s help. What was necessary was to update all the controllers and drivers. He updated each of them on the HP site.

  39. Saggy

    I tried everything u said … still getting the same error at 50% 0x80240031 plz plz help.. m really tired

  40. Leonardo Taufan

    When I enter “net stop wuauserv” it replied “The Windows Update service is not started.” And when I type “net start wuauserv”, it replied “System error 1058 has occurred. The service cannot be started, either because it is disabled or because it has no enabled devices associated with it.”. What does that mean?

  41. This post will tell you what to do in this case:

  42. Anon

    Worked here, thank you!

  43. hc

    installing windows 8.1 from disc from xp with windows has failed error

  44. Stephanie Duncan

    no this didn’t help me and ive tried everything I keep getting same error code 0x80244018

  45. Daryll Dumo

    Please help I followed the Instructions but I still can’t get rid of the error

  46. jasmine

    my windows wont download the code is 0x80070083

  47. Pavan Krishna

    It is not working for me!!!!!!

  48. Brett Smith

    Now I had the same trouble needed to reset pc to factory setting and could get windows 8.1 to install
    here’s want worked for me.
    1. Make sure you have all of your windows 8 Updates installed Even those Optional ones.
    2. Disable your antivirus software Mine (Norton 360 Gold Great Software) But it was to blame for my installing problem.
    3. Restart your pc and allow it to Configure updates
    4. Now go back to the Microsoft App store and try downloading Windows 8.1 It should work like a dream
    Hope this tip has helped somebody
    you follow my tips at your own risk

  49. iampieman

    I have a software distribution.old file as well as a normal software distribution file…which one do i delete?! Thanks

  50. Create a system restore point first. Then delete the .old file first. Then rename the normal software distribution file as .old file. This is just to be on the safer side.

  51. iampieman

    Thanks. I created a restore point, deleted the .old file first, but when I went to rename it as .old file it would not let me and said it was in use, I restarted my computer and tried again before opening anything else and I am still getting the same message.

  52. After restarting, you have to run the 2 net stop commands to stop the Services and then delete or rename them.

  53. Cade Ramirez

    thanks soo much

  54. Chris Bordeman

    Tried a million things, but this finally fixed it. Thanks!

  55. NotAHappyCamper

    I did every step. . . it all worked well, until the last part. I still get the message of being unable to install.

  56. ron sinclair

    OK guys – another problem installation here.
    I’ve tried everything suggested on this post and still no success getting 8.1 to complete.
    In addition to the procedure outlined, I did the sfc /scannow procedure and the Restore Health procedure, to get a clean scannow test.
    I deactivated Norton AV and had run the Micrsoft compatability test and deleted a couple of programs.
    Samsung had released an updated Bios the other day – so was all up to date on that front.
    When the installation attempts – a 2.5 hr process – I get to what I think is the last step, the “just a few more things” step and do get to 100% (used to be 62%) and then it coughs and up comes the “Sorry – no can do” sign. No error code given.
    Anyone have any further suggestions as to solving this frustrating puzzle? Other than buy a Mac?

  57. peter

    I got an error when updating to windows 8.1, error code 0x80240031, I cant fix this error. any help? thanks..

  58. capitao obvio

    Dear AnandK,

    You are fucking awesome. Thank you very much.

  59. Heather

    Both command prompts came up with “Access is denied.” My user account is the main and ONLY one on this PC, so I knew it had to be set as Admin. Still, I even double checked just to make sure. I don’t know what else could be wrong.. SOMEONE PLEASE HELP! I just purchased the PC and so far am not too impressed with Windows 8.

  60. rony009

    Hey I had the same issue with my computer. I wasted my time on it for

    many days but finally I got a solution from this link

  61. Arla

    I have attempted to install Win 8.1 at least eight times! Yes, I have tried every suggestion I was
    able to find on the net! Here is the error code I get every time: Ox80070004-Ox2080D. Isn’t
    this one telling me I’m not signed in as the admin? Well, I am! At least, I am signed into Windows
    as the Admin. What is going on here? Help! :O (Thanks ever so much.)

  62. RandomBoomer

    Finally!! I can’t thank you enough, because after trying dozens of other “fixes” this one actually worked.

  63. “I came across a useful blog post on TechNet, by David Dixon. Try this method, I am sure that it will be able to help you”.
    It worked for me!
    A big thank you!

  64. Tree

    Didnt work. I tried it three times but it came up with the same message

  65. Jordan Orchard

    OMG thank you for this tutorial! I’ve been trying to fix, what seems like, never ending failures within my computer! I’m currently downloading it from the store as I type. Let’s hope this method works! Even so, THANKS SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH!

  66. jollyjolly

    when i type those in its saying access denied

  67. Satisfied

    Thank you! Worked for me.

  68. Josh Wess

    Wow, this worked, I wish I knew what it was I just did, but thanks!

  69. You suck

    Wow, shit advice. How about you actually dig into the issue

  70. Arkie

    Thanks very much. It worked.

  71. Bong Libunao

    Thanks, this tip worked for me!

  72. 28girl

    How do you get to windows software distribution

  73. Rangesh Thevan

    when i gives command net start bits in my windows 8.1 pro showing access is denied

  74. Kayla

    This worked perfect! Thank you so much!

  75. K.Greg

    I have got a different problem. When I tried to upgrade my 8 to 8.1 on my asus x551 it showed “Your apps were installed.” Please reply a solution as soon as possible.

  76. keiona

    Thank you sooooooo much!

  77. rufus12345

    I have an HP Envy notebook with Windows 8, and have tried this and everything else. This seems to be a common problem with the HP Envy notebook. I even tried a “clean boot”, following Microsoft help, to no avail.

  78. Dhopdiggidy

    Worked like a charm. Gracias

  79. paige

    My disk will get to 93% then will say it can’t finish the installation… i even did this to try to get it to work. Still same thing. Any ideas?

  80. Khoai Cháy's

    can you help me, i just started install windows 8.1 and its stop at 98% , it gives me this error: 0x80070005-0x300B
    If you could find a way ,i may marrie you :)))))))))))

  81. tarun

    thanks so much its so helpful sir

  82. Allan G

    Worked for me, thank you good sir 🙂

  83. kingcake36



  84. Adarsh

    thanks a lot!

  85. Euee

    Thank you for the post! Had windows 8.1 for a while but needed to restart my PC, since then Windows 8 and 8.1 has hated me! Thanks for the help!

  86. Euan

    Also I know this post was uploaded a while ago, but thanks anyway!

  87. chris

    Thank you, I had this issue and the info you gave worked

  88. Abbie Normal

    Many thanks. Happy thoughts directed to you.

  89. J.

    Seems to be wokring. Amazing

  90. Aryan

    I use a Lenovo Y500 series laptop tried upgrading once there was some error and now when i try i get this code at the end 0x80072C – 0x4001C. Can You suggest anything to help

  91. Me

    You stupid lying bastard it didn’t work and I did the steps correctly fuck u bitch

  92. Norbert

    Hello I have a problem with updates at windows 8.1 every second day is coming a update when i install it i will not finish it a message is up saying couldn’t not finish update undoing changes can someone help me please

  93. Jason

    I have been trying to get my laptop upgraded to 8.1 so I could push to windows 10 for weeks. I tried everything including formatting with a fresh installation of windows 8. This is the only thing that worked to get windows 8.1 installed. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! My only regret was not finding this article sooner.

  94. john

    thank u so much this method works so well….

  95. Daniel Fowler

    Thank you!

  96. atharva

    my setup automatically gets quiet after going to 97% of preparation 🙁

  97. MY

    THANK YOU!!! This worked for me. SSD failed, had to replace and the Lenovo technician reinstalled Win 8. I could not allow me to update to Win 8.1 until I manually installed KB 2871389 and followed your steps above. Now’s it’s downloading Win 8.1 Pro. Thanks for the steps above.

  98. Marty Johnson

    Thank you very much. You, da Man!

  99. thanks. it worked for me

  100. Gaming geek

    it actually works, thanks

  101. Ur mum

    Connect to the internet

  102. Randy Zaner

    Worked perfectly !!! Thank you very much .

  103. Larry Pritchard

    I found it easier to go to the desktop and right click on the taskbar, bring up Task Manager >Services Tab> Go To Services, scroll down to Windows Update > right click Properties and set to Automatic. This provides a totally graphical solution and requires not rebooting or manual file removal. I performed those steps, went to Windows store and clicked on the Windows 8.1 download, which was successful. That was my experience. Your results may vary. Good luck.

  104. Ace

    Great post! Worked for me!

  105. CiCi

    AnandK@TWC this is such an easy-to-understand article, and extremely helpful. I was able to update my laptop to Windows 8.1. Thank you so much!!!

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