"Failure configuring Windows updates. Reverting changes." error when you try to install Windows updates

Symptoms

When you try to install Windows updates, you get the following error:
Failure configuring Windows updates. Reverting changes. Do not turn off your computer.

Note If this issue occurs, it may take about 30 minutes to revert the changes, and then the system will show the Windows logon screen.

Resolution

To resolve this issue, use the following methods starting with the first method below. If that doesn't resolve your issue, click next method.

Method 1: Restart Windows and install Windows updates in a clean boot state

To perform a clean boot in Windows, see how to perform a clean boot to troubleshoot a problem in Windows 8, Windows 7, or Windows Vista. And then, install Windows Updates according to your operating system.

Windows 8
Windows 7 and Windows Vista

Note Installing Windows updates in a clean boot state will avoid the Windows updates installation being blocked by some other applications and services that are installed in Windows.

    Method 2: Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter

    Windows 8 or Windows 7
    Windows Vista

    Method 3: Unplug your removable media from the computer

    1. Check if any removable media is not removed from the computer, such as removable disks (Blu-ray disks, DVDs, CDs), memory cards (CompactFlash card, Secure Digital card, Memory Stick), and USB flash drives.
    2. Unplug all the removable media.

    Note These removable media may cause this issue during the restart of Windows.

    Method 4: Perform a system restore

    When you start your computer by using the Windows installation disc, you can perform system recovery options on startup. To do this, follow these steps:
    Windows 8
    Windows Vista or Windows 7

    Note You must be logged on to Windows with an administrator account to complete this method. If this is a computer that is part of a network at work, you should ask the system administrator for help. For information about how to log into Windows as an administrator, click one of the following links, depending on the version of Windows that you're running:


    Note If your computer is not configured to start from a CD or from a DVD, or if Windows came preinstalled on your computer without the CDs or DVDs, see the documentation that was included with the computer for instruction about how to continue, or skip to the next method. 

    Method 5: Perform an in-place upgrade (reinstallation) (Windows 7 and Windows Vista)

    Performing an in-place upgrade will restore the current Windows installation to the version of the installation DVD. This also requires the installation of all updates that are not included on the installation DVD. If your computer came with Windows pre-installed, review your computer's documentation for instructions on how to do an in-place upgrade. Otherwise, follow these steps.
     
    1. Insert the Windows Vista or Windows 7 DVD in the computer's DVD drive.
    2. In the Setup window, select Install Now.
      • Note If Windows does not automatically detect the DVD, follow these steps:
        1. Select Start, and then type Drive:\setup.exe in the Start Search box. Note The Drive placeholder is the drive letter of the computer's DVD drive, usually D:\.
        2. In the Programs list, select Setup.exe.
        3. In the Setup window, select Install Now.
    3. Select Go online to obtain the latest updates for installation (recommended).
    4. Type the CD key if you are prompted to do this.
    5. Select the operating system in the Install Windows page you want to upgrade.
    6. Select Yes to accept the Microsoft Software License Terms.
    7. On the Which type of installation do you want? screen, select Upgrade.
    8. When the installation is complete, restart your computer.
    Note We strongly recommend that you back up all your personal files. For information, see how to back up your files.

    More Information

    If these methods did not fix the issue, you can use the Microsoft Customer Support Services Web site to find other solutions to your problem. Some services that the Microsoft Customer Support Services Web sites provide include the following:
    • Searchable Knowledge Base: Search technical support information and self-help tools for Microsoft products.
    • Solution Centers: View product-specific frequently asked questions and support highlights.
    • Other Support Options: Use the Web to ask a question, contact Microsoft Customer Support Services, or provide feedback.
    If you continue to have problems, you might want to contact Microsoft Support.

    How to restore or repair your Windows installation

    Repair and recovery for Windows

    Startup Repair for Windows 7

    Startup Repair for Windows Vista

    Note These sites include options to use when the manufacturer has installed the System Recovery options on the computer.

    How to avoid this problem in Windows Vista
    To avoid this problem in Windows Vista, obtain and install update 937287 from the Microsoft Download Center separately from all other updates on the Windows Update site. Install the update that applies to your version of Windows Vista so that you can successfully install future updates.

    The following files are available for download from the Microsoft Download Center:
    Windows Vista x86-based systems
    Download Download the Windows6.0-KB937287-x86.msu package now.
    Windows Vista x64-based systems
    Download Download the Windows6.0-KB937287-x64.msu package now.

    Status

    Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.
    Properties

    Article ID: 949358 - Last Review: Feb 27, 2017 - Revision: 7

    Windows Vista Ultimate, Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition, Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition, Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Basic 64-bit Edition, Windows 7 Enterprise, Windows 7 Home Basic, Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Starter, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro

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