I just got back from a 5-day family visit to northern Virginia on Monday evening. That meant the bulk of yesterday was spent catching up. That included dealing with the Patch Tuesday release of Cumulative Update KB4025342, and the latest Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT). By and large, things went well with those updates. But my Surface Pro 3, running Release Preview proved a notable and highly resistant exception to that rule. I fought with Windows Update for over an hour on that PC, without ever effecting a repair. Fortunately, upon trying it out, WUMT rescues Win10 Release Preview 15063.483 for my Surface Pro 3.
When WU Hangs, WUMT Rescues Win10 Release Preview
I took the Surface Pro 3 on the road with me, along with my still-new Brydge 12.3 Aluminum Keyboard. I’m still not sure if I shot myself in the foot by ripping the Surface out of that keyboard, plugging in the Microsoft Type Cover, and then plugging the unit into the Surface Pro 3 Dock. But when I tried to access the Patch Tuesday updates, I got a series of failure messages from Windows Update indicating that pending items could not be applied.
For experienced Windows 10 users, there’s a standard drill one goes through when WU fails to cooperate. I confirmed the issue by running the update facility within Windows Defender, which likewise reported being unable to download updates. Next, I ran the built-in update troubleshooter (Control Panel –> Troubleshooting –> Fix problems with Windows Update). Didn’t help. So I turned to the WU troubleshooter download (a more recent and presumably more powerful version of the built-in tool). No dice there, either.
Then I pondered the next step in the troubleshooting chain — namely, the excellent TenForums.com tutorial “Reset Windows Update in Windows 10.” As I read over its instructions, I remembered that the Windows Update MiniTool (aka WUMT) can sometimes grab and apply updates when WU itself gets stuck. (See my November 2016 post “WUMT Does Updates When WU Can’t or Won’t” for another recitation.) “Not much to lose,” I figured, and gave it a shot. As the following screen cap of the WUMT Update History shows, it managed to install 2 of the 3 pending updates:
WUMT reports that CU KB4025342 and Defender Updates applied successfully, MRT update fails.
[Click image to see full-sized view, please.]
Though WU itself didn’t tell me much about what was going wrong, WUMT let me know the problem lay with the MSRT update. Thus, I was able to visit the MSRT page at the Microsoft Download Center, grab the latest version, and run the .exe file manually myself. That cleared up all the pending items from WU.
And sure enough, the next time I ran an update check in Settings (Windows Update –> Check for updates), it produced a clean bill of health. Problem solved! And again, that’s why I recommend that Windows admins keep a copy of WUMT around (it runs just fine from a USB stick) as part of their standard toolboxes.