Windows 7 will not update...... Help PLEASE.........


Well-Known Member
For the past couple of weeks I have been having problems with my laptop, which I initially thought was a virus, and after reinstalling Windows 7 on many, many occasions, it just will not update.

I have read, and tried many of the suggested solutions from many various websites, but it just won't work.

As a last resort I reformatted all partitions, except the recovery partition of course, re-installed everything, but still the same. Just has a matter of interest I tried my desktop machine and Wife's laptop, all running Windows 7, but guess what? Exactly the same problem!!

I will say, last week I upgraded to Windows 10, which seemed to update properly, but most of my programs are incompatible and simply don't work so have had to revert back to Win 7.

Because this problem exists on several machines I can only assume the problem is with Microsoft update itself?

Has anyone managed to find an answer to this situation before I put my machines in the skip?

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Wow! You have 3 computers that won't up dates windows. That does sound like it could be virus related. You will probably get more replies from other members!
You could run malwarebytes free and Adwcleaner for malware. Also You might want to do a sfc /scannow to check for file corruption.
Here's links for sfc /scannow and malware cleaners!
How to Repair Corrupted Windows System Files with the SFC and DISM Commands

Download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware 2.2.1 - Download -

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Well-Known Member
Thanks Holdum333

As mentioned in my post I have already tried many suggested solutions, including the one's you mention, all without success.

The other question is: why do I have the same problem with all machines?

I have used Linux in the past, and although it is slightly more complicated to use initially, I think I'm going to ditch Windows and use Ubuntu, as it's now more trouble than it's worth.


Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Please provide the exception code and your Windows Update log (C:\Windows\WindowsUpdate.log)

I couldn't open that post, but I would do the following if you haven't
  • Press [Windows key + r] type services.msc
  • Stop WindowsUpdate and Background Intelligent Transfer Service
  • Navigate C:\Windows and delete the folder SoftwareDistribution
  • Restart the WindowsUpdate service


Well-Known Member
Right. After a couple of week's trying many, many different suggested solutions to try to get Windows to update - Nothing!

However, today I returned from work, switched on, and now it's working.

I haven't done anything to get this to happen.

What's going on??

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Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
Hi Chris,

Good suggestions here from both Holdum & Neemo:worship:. I would also add a comment or two after reading through your attempts at fixing.

First, it is NOT adequate to reformat a drive with a Win7 reinstallation (or any other windows version) without wiping out the RECOVERY PARTITION. Unfortunately, this has to go also, as many viruses/malware and spyware viruses specifically like to hide .bin copies (executables) in those areas as well as the Boot Sector (Rootkit). If you fail to format that part of your hard drive, you may not have eliminated all copies of a possible virus, and there are hundreds that attack the Windows Update applet out there. Malwarebytes, AdWare, and even most anti-virus programs cannot read or access those 2 areas of your hard drive. This is unfortunate, as most folks are not aware of this.

You may have already solved your problem with one or more of the above methods, so you can stop reading if that's the case. For you or other forum peeps reading this who may have a similar problem, I also will mention that if you don't have factory Windows Recovery or Reset discs or usb media, I encourage you to make it before WIPING out that RECOVERY PARTITION. Once you make a Recovery disc or Recovery usb stick, when you reinstall your base windows (Win7 in your case here), a complete format of the hard drive is done (as long as you remember to select CUSTOM on the install screen); and as part of the normal reinstallation process the factory Recovery disc/usb stick WILL ACTUALLY RESTORE THE RECOVERY PARTITION TO YOUR HARD DRIVE JUST AS IT WAS WHEN IT WAS OOB (Out-Of-Box) BRAND NEW!!!

Lastly, it's important to know that in some cases, this Recovery Partition may be restored, but when you go to perform another Windows Reinstallation or Reset down the road from some other windows problem, it may not work if your hard drive is damaged. This is usually not done by a virus (in most cases), but rather from the drive aging process causing it to develop bad sectors that cause unrecoverable read/write errors. Process of elimination can lead you to determine whether or not the drive has failed or not, by simply buying a brand new sealed hard drive of the correct size and capacity for your computer, and running the Recovery Media (Disc/USB stick) on the new drive. Once the factory Windows and apps are reinstalled along with the RECOVERY PARTITION, you can run Windows Recovery from the Recovery Partition and test it. It should overwrite the Windows install you just did, and put everything back to OOB condition. If the Recovery Partition option now works, and it did not before as described above, then your old hard drive is defective from aging or it was damaged by the virus. In either case, you can see it's a good idea to make sure your Recovery Media and your Hard Drive are capable of resetting your Windows to OOB condition. If your computer is 3 years old or older, this is a VERY GOOD thing to do, as then you know for a fact that both your Recovery Media and your Hard Drive are actually capable of restoring your PC to OOB condition, especially when you have lots of GB's or TB's worth of data and apps installed on it and need to get it all working again. [Hard drives begin to fail > 3 years of use.] That's often 1-3 weeks for most of us experienced users. Knowing that your Recovery Procedure actually works BEFORE you have a windows crash or hardware crash can cut that rebuild time down considerably! :eagerness:

<<<BIGBEARJEDI>>> :lightbulb::applaud:


Well-Known Member
Thanks for the information Bigbearjedi

Just a couple of comments on my behalf. When I reformatted the partitions this week I used Partition Magic which allowed me to run from the CD/DVD drive and I was able to format the hard drive partitions I needed to, including the 'system area'. I was not able to format the 'recovery partition' as I would not be able to reinstall Windows plus any integral factory supplied software.

The laptop I am currently trying to sort is a Samsung S3520 which unfortunately wasn't supplied with any factory restore disks. The only disk I have is the Windows recovery disk, which I had to 'burn' when I first had the machine, but this does not include any other software except a backup copy of Windows.

I have been in touch with Samsung in the past and they do not supply any factory restore disks, so when I do a recovery I have to use the recovery as loaded on the partition. Should this get corrupted, or should I need to replace the hard drive, then I'm 'stuffed'.

I was going to download a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium from Microsoft's website, but when I enter the product key as shown on the bottom of my machine, it isn't accepted. My plan was to completely wipe the hard drive and install a 'clean copy' of Windows without a recovery area. It just means that when I have another issue, which will happen a some point, I would have to reinstall everything individually again.

Thanks again

Hi chris! If I'm understanding your reply, you need to create back up images of your OS with a 3rd party image program.
I prefer Macrium Reflect, but there are several free programs to choose from.
Please click on my signature. I'm sure you will get more replies from other members about this!

What I normally do is try and reuse the OEM System Locked Preinstallation licensing if available.

You need 3 things:

- Something called a SLIC table hard-coded into the BIOS by the OEM
- The correct OEM SLP key for the manufacturer and version of Windows
- A matching digital certificate file (e.g. Dell.xrm-ms)

With those, and a standard OEM copy of Windows 7, you can reinstall the system to fully genuine and then load whatever software you want, minus the OEM's bloatware. As far as I'm aware, so long as you're just reinstalling the same version of Windows as was originally supplied on the machine by the OEM, this is all above-board & legit.

Unfortunately I'm doing just this right at the moment (on a Dell laptop which suffered a catastrophic hard disk failure) and whilst I've gotten W7 happily loaded up as fully genuine, and working well in all other respects, I too cannot get the Windows Update working. Have tried over and over. Brand new hard drive.

I've tried many of the suggestions on the 'net with no joy and I'm beginning to suspect a problem at Microsoft's end tbh. Will keep trying tho and I'll bookmark this thread & report back if I make any breakthroughs! Good luck.

Instructions for reloading using OEM SLP licensing via the BIOS SLIC are easily findable on a google search but I did notice it can be tricky getting the right channel to load off the install media. (Retail or OEM). The W7 disk seems to be pretty universal but whilst I've been doing the Dell, it stuck tenaciously to trying to install as Retail channel. Eventually, contrary to most instructions on the net, I tried inserting the OEM SLP key when asked during installation (as opposed to waiting till later and trying to manually insert it via slmgr.vbs -ipk) and once I'd done that, it happily came up as OEM SLP channel, accepted the xrm-ms license file via slmgr.vbs -ilc, and then slmgr.vbs -dli reported 'licensed'.

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