It is necessary to keep your Windows up to date in order to ensure smooth operation. With the release of Windows 11, keeping your system up to date is more important than ever. Furthermore, new updates contribute to the operating system’s overall stability and security by ensuring that all applications and devices are fully functional. Unfortunately, updates can bring with them new bugs and problems for the user. So, what should you do if you’re having trouble downloading a Windows 10 update? Our step-by-step guide will show you how to resolve the Windows 10 update pending install issue.
Fixing Windows 10 Update Pending Install Stuck Issue
Multiple factors contribute to this problem, including:
- Software conflicts
- Bugs in the system
- User determined Active Hours
- Previous pending updates
- Disabled Services
- Insufficient storage space
Different statuses indicate different stages of the update and/or issues. To better understand the situation, look at the table below.
|Pending Download||Notifies the availability of a non-critical update. Awaiting user permission|
|Downloading||Notifies the start of downloading of the update from the Microsoft server.|
|Pending Install||Marks the end of the downloading process. Awaiting user permission.|
|Awaiting Install||Awaiting to meet the required conditions to start installing the update.|
|Initializing||Implies start of preparing for the installation of the update.|
|Installing||Indicates the start of update installation process.|
To fix the Windows 10 update pending download issue on your computer, use the methods listed below. Only then will you be able to determine whether or not you are eligible to download the most recent version of Windows 11.
Restart PC & Try Again
Restarting your computer may assist you in resolving this issue, as some updates are dependent on the installation of other updates in the queue. This means that before the next update can be installed, the system may need to be restarted.
- Click on Power icon and select Restart.
- After rebooting, press Windows + I keys together to open Settings.
- Click on Update & Security, as shown.
- In the Windows Update section, click on Check for updates button.
- Windows will search, download & install updates if any are available.
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This problem can also occur if there were issues with the download, such as missing files or an interrupted connection. As explained here, you must delete the previously downloaded update and re-download it.
- Open File Explorer by pressing Windows + E keys simultaneously.
- Type the following location path in the address bar and hit Enter.
- Press Ctrl + A keys to select all files and folders. Then, press Shift + Delete keys to delete these permanently.
- Then, restart your PC and download the updates again as per the steps detailed in Method 1.
Enable Windows Update Service
You can set up how updates are installed so that the computer doesn’t have to wait for your input to start or finish the update process. As a result, the issue with Windows updates not installing would be resolved.
- Launch Run dialog box by pressing Windows + R keys simultaneously.
- Type services.msc and hit Enter.
- In the right pane, scroll through the list of services and double-click on Windows Update.
- In the General tab, select Automatic from the Startup type drop-down list.
- Click on Apply > OK and restart your Windows 10 system.
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Enable Background Intelligent Transfer Service
Similarly, keeping BITS enabled will aid in the download or installation of Windows updates that are pending.
- Launch Services window through Run dialog box, as instructed in Method 3.
- In the right pane, right-click on Background Intelligent Transfer Service and select Properties, as shown.
- Under General tab, select Automatic from the drop-down list titled Startup type.
- Click on Apply > OK to save these changes.
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Enable Automatic Cryptographic Service
This, like BITS and Windows update service, is required for a smooth update process and to avoid the Windows update pending install stuck issue.
- Open the Services window and scroll down to Cryptographic Services, as shown.
- Double-click on it to open Cryptographic Services Properties.
- Select Automatic option for the Startup type, as illustrated below.
- Click on Apply > OK and reboot your PC.
Run Windows Update Troubleshooter
Windows includes a number of troubleshooters that are tailored to specific scenarios. To resolve the issue of a pending Windows 10 update, use the Windows Update Troubleshooter.
- To open Settings, press the Windows + I keys together and select Update and Security, as shown.
- In the left pane, select Troubleshoot. Scroll down to Windows Update in the right pane, then select Run the troubleshooter.
- Windows will detect and fix any issues that prevent you from updating your operating system
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Reset Windows Updates
Alternatively, you can use Command Prompt to reset Windows Update service and fix the pending download problem in Windows 10. The Software Distribution and Catroot 2 folders can also be renamed using these commands.
- Click on Start icon, type cmd to search for Command Prompt. Then, select Run as Administrator, as shown.
- Type the following commands individually and press Enter after each:
net stop wuauserv net stop cryptSvc net stop bits net stop msiserver ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 catroot2.old
- Next, restart services by executing these commands:
net start wuauserv net start cryptSvc net start bits net start msiserver
Scan & Fix Corrupt System Files
System files that are corrupt can cause updates to become stuck. The DISM and SFC commands may be used to repair and rebuild such files, resolving the Windows update pending install stuck issue. How to run these scans is as follows:
- Open Command Prompt with administrative privileges as instructed in Method 7.
- Type sfc /scannow as depicted below, and hit Enter.
- System File Checker will begin its process. Wait for Verification 100 % completed statement to appear.
- Now, type the following DISM commands to scan and repair corrupt files. Execute these by pressing Enter key.
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
- Now, delete all contents of C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download folder as explained in Method 2.
- Repeat the same for files & folders in C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 location folder.
- Lastly, restart your Windows 10 PC and download updates as instructed in Method 1.
Allow Downloads Over Metered Connections
Because of the metered connection setting, it’s possible that the download is stuck or pending. To fix the Windows 10 update pending install issue, turn it off as follows:
- Press Windows + I keys to open the Settings window.
- Click on Network & Internet, as shown.
- Then, select Wi-Fi in the left pane and click on the Network to which you are currently connected.
- Toggle off the option named Set as metered connection, as depicted below.
Change Active Hours
The updates may have been scheduled to occur outside of Active hours in order to minimize disruptions to your daily routine. To fix the Windows update install stuck problem, change the Active or Working hours setting:
- Navigate to Settings > Update & Security, as shown in Method 1.
- On the Windows Update screen, click on Change active hours.
- Turn the toggle off for Automatically adjust active hours for this device based on activity option.
- Click on Change next to Current active hours, as highlighted below.
- Adjust the Start time & End time according to your convenience and click on Save.
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Make Space For New Updates
Obviously, enough space on your primary drive, i.e. C disk, is required for new updates to take place. The pending Windows 10 update issue should be resolved by freeing up some space.
By Emptying Recycle Bin
- Right-click on Recycle Bin on the Desktop.
- Click on Empty Recycle Bin, as depicted.
- Click on Yes to confirm the said deletion.
By Deleting Temporary Files
- Press Windows + I keys together to open the Settings window.
- Click on System, as shown.
- Click on Temporary files and then, allow Windows to scan which files can be deleted and how much space can be freed.
- Click on Remove files.
We hope this article was helpful in resolving the Windows 10 Update Pending Install issue. In the comments section below, tell us about your troubleshooting experience. Also, please let us know what topic you’d like us to cover next.
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