How to fix Windows Update error 0x80070020 in Windows 10 – BugsFighter

How to fix Windows Update error 0x80070020 in Windows 10 - BugsFighter

What is Windows Update error 0x80070020

Today we are going to take a look at another Windows 10 error known by this code 0x80070020. Many users complained it comes up when trying to install new updates pending in the Update Center. The error was first spotted in 2015, just at the time Windows 10 was released. Soon after a couple of patches, Microsoft managed to address the issue and wave it eventually. Unfortunately, this effect did not last forever as users Windows 10 Creators update brought the 0x80070020 error back to its previous life. We are lucky that the community has had enough time to research the problem and find working solutions to fix it despite the appearance. The most common reasons turned out to be corrupted or missing system files, bugged update configuration, third-party conflicts, disk damage, and other causes like that. While all of these reasons may sound quite intimidating to handle, there is nothing too complex about their solution. Just follow our guide below to revert your PC back to normal life without update errors.

There are special repair utilities for Windows, that can solve problems related to registry corruption, file system malfunction, Windows drivers instability. We recommend you to use Advanced System Repair to fix the “Windows Update error 0x80070020” in Windows 10.

1. Run Windows Update Troubleshooter

While it is rarely the case, some errors like 0x80070020 can be solved with the default Windows Troubleshooter. If you did not know that, Troubshooter is an in-built utility designed to find and remove existing problems in various segments. You can use it to analyze update issues as well, so let’s try and do it below. Windows will scan out your system for potential problems and try to fix them eventually.

As mentioned, this method does not happen to be successful that often, so move on to other solutions in case it did not work.

2. Disable Anti-malware software

A possible reason for the already mentioned Windows 10 update error could be a third-party program. The most popular software that could be a culprit is deemed to be an antivirus. The reason why such errors may happen is that your antivirus might have decided the downloaded update files can be a threat to your system and successfully block them eventually. For some reason, many users confirmed that was the case, and disabling their antivirus actually helped resolve the issue. So try to do it yourself and see if no update errors appear. In case everything goes smooth and flawless this time around, then you already know what was the culprit. You can disable your antivirus each time while installing new updates or try alternative programs that would not cause incompatibility with Windows. We recommend you to try Malwarebytes – trusted and effective antivirus that wields advanced protection algorithms to combat local and online threats. Download it using the button below and try its ultimate antimalware experience for free.

3. Check integrity of system files

As we pointed out in the beginning, corrupted or missing system files can be easily found on the list of potential causes. It is impossible to know whether it is the case without scanning your system for such a scarcity. Thus, use these steps below to perform two different scans able to find and restore absent components, if any. Makes sure to use both of them in the sequence below as they might have a different impact on the solution.



While executing all of these commands in Command Prompt, Windows will let you know if some has been restored. If yes, go install new updates and check if the same error appears.

4. Scan your hard drive for damaged fragments

It is important to check your main disk for damage as well. The method involves the same Command Prompt we used above, so it will not take too much of your time.

Now try to install the problematic update. Again no effect? – Move on to the rest of the solutions further below.

5. Run a Clean Bootup

We made a huge emphasis on incompatibility issues being the cause of errors like 0x80070020 for good reason. Apart from antimalware software, which you already checked, there may be some other third-party software that runs into conflict with Windows updates. Therefore, try to launch in Clean bootup mode and install the faulty update there. Clean bootup is a native and great feature helping users boot their PC only with in-built apps and services. This allows to avoid any conflict with third-party software and update the system eventually without problems. To enter this mode, make sure you do the following:

Now you can try to access Update Center and install an update you need. No matter whether you managed or failed to do it, you should turn Windows back to Normal Startup settings. To do this, simply redo all the steps you implemented above by enabling the disabled services and changing your startup option from Selective to Normal.

6. Reset Windows Update components

If no method used from above helped you resolve the issue, then resetting Windows Update settings may finally sort out the error. Statistically, this method has proven itself to be very effective when dealing with many update issues. The whole procedure involves restarting BITS, Cryptographic, MSI Installer, and Windows Update services as well as renaming some update folders (SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2). Both of these folders contain temporary files necessary for implementing Windows Updates. Thus, we will force Windows to delete corrupted elements and create update-related components from scratch. Below, we will show you two ways of performing this method. The first requires typing and executing each console command in a manual sequence. The other is similar but done using a so-called batch script written in Notepad and saved as WUReset.bat. There is no real difference in which one you choose. Although the entire procedure may seem advanced and complicated, it will not take too much time and knowledge. Just follow the sequence listed below:

Using manual steps

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

net start wuauserv
net start cryptSvc
net start bits
net start msiserver

Using the Batch Script

This is an alternative method to the above. A batch script is used to execute the same range of commands to reset all Windows Update components, Cryptographic services, and folders like SoftwareDistribution. It is not that hard as you could imagine, but rather easier than the previous one. All you need is a Windows Notepad and a bit of copy-paste magic. Batch scripts hold an upper hand over manual typing as they allow you to execute all the necessary commands at once. If you ever stumble into similar issues in the future, you can execute the already-created .bat file and reset update components:

echo Simple Script to Reset / Clear Windows Update
attrib -h -r -s %windir%system32catroot2
attrib -h -r -s %windir%system32catroot2*.*
net stop wuauserv
net stop CryptSvc
net stop BITS
ren %windir%system32catroot2 catroot2.old
ren %windir%SoftwareDistribution sold.old
ren "%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Downloader" downloader.old
net Start BITS
net start CryptSvc
net start wuauserv
echo Task completed successfully...

7. Use Media Creation Tool

The last solution we have on the line comes down to Media Creation Tool. This is a special Microsoft utility designed to obtain the latest updates inside of various errors. Algorithms of this utility will find relevant updates and install them to your system without touching personal data. In order to do it, follow the steps listed below:

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