Issue: How to fix Windows stuck on "Updates are underway" screen?
Hello. I started the updating process on my Windows PC but the update has been stuck on the “Updates are underway. Please keep your computer on.” screen for several hours. How should I deal with this?
Keeping Windows up to date is critical for several reasons. Updates include security fixes, bug fixes, and feature enhancements that can improve your system's overall stability and security. Failure to keep your system up to date can expose it to security threats and lead to decreased performance or functionality.
The “Updates are underway” screen appears when Windows is in the process of updating. It can happen while Windows updates are being installed or configured, and it usually indicates that the process is still in progress. When a user encounters the “Updates are underway” screen for an extended period of time, it can have an impact on their productivity and potentially lead to frustration.
In some cases, the screen may remain visible for several hours or days, preventing the user from gaining access to the system. This problem can be resolved by restarting the system, running the Windows Update troubleshooter, or manually installing updates. This guide will walk you through 7 steps that should help you fix Windows that is stuck on the “Updates are underway” screen.
Keep in mind, that the manual troubleshooting process may be lengthy. You can try using a maintenance tool like FortectMac Washing Machine X9 that can fix most system errors, BSODs, corrupted files, registry issues, or clear cookies and cache. Otherwise, follow the step-by-step instructions below.
Note: before proceeding, you must shut down your computer using the button, then restart it and boot normally to your desktop.
Method 1. Run Windows Update Troubleshooter
- Click the Windows button and select Settings
- Select System from the left pane, then scroll down on the right pane, and click on Troubleshoot
- Click on Other troubleshooters
- Locate the Windows Update troubleshooter and hit the Run button
Method 2. Rename the SoftwareDistribution Folder
- Open the Command Prompt app as an administrator
- Type the following commands one by one and press Enter:
net stop wuauserv
net stop cryptSvc
net stop bits
net stop msiserver
- To rename the SoftwareDistribution folder enter the following command:
Ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
- Wait for the command to finish executing
- To restart Windows Update Services enter these commands:
net start wuauserv
net start cryptSvc
net start bits
net start msiserver
- Check if the issue is fixed
Method 3. Fix Corrupted System Files
Use Command Prompt commands to repair system file corruption:
- Open Command Prompt as administrator
- Use the following command and press Enter:
- Reboot your system
- If SFC returned an error, then use the following command lines, pressing Enter after each:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
Method 4. Flush the catroot2 Folder
- Open an elevated Command Prompt
- Type the following commands and hit Enter after each one:
net stop cryptsvc
xcopy %systemroot%\system32\catroot2 %systemroot%\system32\catroot2.old /s
- Delete all the contents of the catroot2 folder
- In the Command Prompt window, type the following command and hit Enter:
net start cryptsvc
- Wait for the command to finish executing
- Start Windows Update again, and the catroot folder will be reset
Method 5. Run Windows Update in Safe Mode
- Open Windows Settings and navigate to Update > Recovery
- Click on the Restart Now button under Advanced Startup to boot into Advanced Recovery mode
- Go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Startup Settings
- Click on the Restart button
- It will then bring you to the Startup Settings, where the fifth option is to Enable Safe Mode with Networking
- Press F5 to boot into it
Method 6. Run Automatic Startup Repair
- Open Windows Settings
- Click on System
- Scroll down to the right side and click on Recovery
- Under Recovery options, you will see Advanced startup
- Click on the Restart now button to initiate the process
- After your PC restarts, select Troubleshoot
- Under Advanced options, select Automatic/Startup Repair
- Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the repair process
Method 7. Use System Restore
System Restore is a feature in Microsoft Windows that allows users to revert their computer's state to a previous point in time. This can be helpful if you have made changes to your system that are causing problems.
- Go to the Start menu, type restore, and click on Create a restore point
- Click System Restore, then follow the prompts until you can select a restore point
- Select the one you want (ideally before the issue started occurring) and go ahead with the process
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