Windows Update is taking an unusually long time to scan and install updates


Consider the following scenario:
  • You do a clean installation of Windows 7 or you have not checked for updates for a long time.
  • You try to install updates for Windows 7 from Windows Update.

In this scenario, you may experience a long delay identifying and retrieving updates from the Windows Update service. 


This issue occurs because the latest updates for the Windows Update service aren't installed.


To resolve this issue, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, type Windows update in the search box, and then click Windows Update in the Programs list.
  2. In the left pane, click Change settings, select Never check for updates, and then select OK.
  3. Restart the computer.
  4. After the computer restarts, manually download and install the following two updates for the Windows Update service. Please download the appropriate 32-bit or 64-bit version for your operating system. Click here to see how to determine whether a computer is running a 32-bit version or 64-bit version of Windows.
    Update NameDownload URLs
    KB3020369 April 2015 servicing stack update for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2
    KB3172605 July 2016 update rollup for Windows 7 SP1 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1
  5. Install KB3020369 “April 2015 Servicing Stack update for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2” first.
  6. After KB3020369 completes installation, install KB3172605 “July 2016 Update Rollup for Windows 7 SP1 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1”. You will be asked to restart the computer during the installation of KB3172605.
  7. Open Windows Update, select Change Settings. Under Important Updates, click the dropdown and select Install updates automatically (recommended). Click OK to save your changes, and then select Check for updates to download and install any remaining updates.


Article ID: 3200747 - Last Review: Oct 20, 2016 - Revision: 1