Many "Failed" Windows Updates?

Since 11/01, I have noticed that there have been numerous updates to my VISTA program that have failed.

I wouldn’t have even noticed, but I just re-started my computer due to the fact that a Trojan (s) had gotten in and I immediately went to AVG which said my virus protection was out of date (even though at the top, it says I am 'fully protected").

So I am now running a total scan.

I went to a site called “Health Care Fact Sheet” and was warned that the site might be a phishing, etc. one, and for me not to open it, and I didn’t, but when I went to ANOTHER site, that message didn’t appear. Instead I got a warning that I had just gotten numerous Trojans, so that’s why the scan.

And that brings up another question: I have AVG 9.0 (recently updated and paid for last year), but every time I log on, I see a little exclamation point telling me that an “update needs a re-start”.

I see it even now, wanting me to re-start for an update on Anti-Spyware and Link Scanner.


I set it to scan every morning at 3, so why can’t it just load its own damn self?;):slight_smile:



Quasimodem, I’ve split your question out of the GQ sticky and into a new thread. Hopefully you’ll get some responses here.


I would first go to

Start -> Type in Windows Update -> The open this

Then I would click on View Update History

Then right click on the update that says failed and find out if you can get any info.

If you think you may have a virus or trojan you may want to scan for that

In addition to AVG I would also try Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware, the free version is good enough.

Spybot Search and Destry is also handy.

Do you have the latest defintion of AVG? Sometimes people don’t update the virus protector.

You may have a trojan that is not permitting updates.

To get around this I would first dowload Malwarebytes and install.
Then I would MANUALLY download updates to Windows Defender, not through Windows itself but MANUALLY download the latest Windows Defender definition from here

Then I would reboot the computer and go into safe mode.

When the computer starts up keep hitting F8 until the computer goes into Safe Mode. From there run Malwarebytes, AVG and Windows Defender.

After you run those programs in Safe Mode, if you find anything fix it and then reboot the computer as normal.

Updates to the dot-net framework seem to be particularly problmatic. I recall reading something for one of the accounting packages that said that if certain other windows updates had been applied before the dot-net framwork packages, the dot-net updates would fail. The solution they gave was to uninstall all dot-net and re-install.

The problem I ran into is that I had deleted all those annoying long list of old uninstall folders on C: when I ran low on space; now I can’t uninstall. So, I let the error messages send to Microsoft every day. They probably discard them; you would think they would figure out the problem and fix it with a new upgrade, but then you wouldn’t be thinking like Microsoft; besides, how badly do they want to fix XP any more (which is what I have…)

I’ve given up bothering about failed Windows updates. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason why some updates fail and googling shows that it’s a pretty widespread problem with no evident solution in many cases. During the couple of years I’ve been running Vista I estimate some 5% of updates failed. I learned to just ignore them eventually, mostly minor updates anyway. I’m upgrading to Windows 7 soon, let’s hope things are better with that system.

Have you tried recreating the updates catalog?

To do so open the command prompt as an administrator enter the following commands (press enter after each line and wait for the command to complete):

net stop bits
net stop wuauserv
net stop cryptsvc
ren c:\windows\softwaredistribution sd1
cd \ProgramData\Microsoft\Network
ren Downloader Downloader.old
net start bits
net start wuauserv
net start cryptsvc

When a website is telling you you have viruses/trojans. It is lying. It is more than likely trying to dupe you into downloading their (probably rubbish and dodgy) ‘cleanup’ application.

When an already installed app such as AVG tells you you have a virus or trojan it’s probably wise to trust it.