Failed Windows 10 updates can be frustrating, especially because you might not know what causes them. You can avoid most update errors with a few maintenance tasks even before you click the update button.
These tips will get you through the next Windows 10 update this spring (version 21H1) without breaking a sweat. Also, they are fundamental to any future updates as well.
For an efficient Windows 10 update, make sure there is enough disk space. The type of update determines the space you need to keep vacant on your hard drive. While small updates such as patches or service packs don’t need more than hundreds of megabytes, major updates need way more than that.
According to Microsoft, you will need a minimum of 32 GB free space to install a major Windows 10 update.
You can always reschedule the update because of insufficient free disk space and use this as an opportunity to clean up the hard drive by deleting all non-essential files. Also, create a backup with only the files you want. This exercise will give you an idea of what file you want to include in the backup so you can do an anti-virus scan. There is no point in creating a backup containing infected files.
Disk problems can cause the update to fail so check it for errors too. Here’s how you can do it.
Windows 10 might display a message saying you don’t need to scan it but scan it anyway just to be sure. Scanning the drive will not slow down your work since you can use the drive while Windows 10 checks it.
A corrupt file might create problems when updating the operating system or even stop the entire process. Fortunately, identifying and replacing corrupt files is quite easy. Here’s how you can do it:
The system file checker command scans all system files and replaces corrupted files from their cached copies.
There are two categories of user accounts: Standard and Administrator. While you can perform many activities using the Standard account, you can’t use it to update Windows 10.
Here’s how to find what type of account you are using:
If “Administrator” is mentioned under your account name then you are ready to update Windows 10. Otherwise, you will have to get admin rights on Windows.
When it comes to updating Windows 10, it’s better to be safe than sorry. It might be easier to back up individual folders or documents using cloud storage or a physical backup than creating multiple Restore Points using the System Restore feature.
For your most important files and documents, you can use both options to make sure they are 100% safe. Choose a shock-resistant hard drive and encrypted cloud storage.
In case you rely on your browser to remember all login credentials and settings, you might have an unpleasant surprise after the Windows 10 update. There have been previous updates that have erased all stored information on the browser.
You can use a password manager which will keep your credentials in an encrypted vault and you only need your login ID and a master password to access it. Do not create a Word document or an Excel spreadsheet to hold these sensitive details as these are easy targets for hackers. A better idea would be to write down your credentials on a piece of paper and put it in a safe place.
In Windows 10, System Restore is a feature designed to take a snapshot of the current working state and create a restore point before any system modifications. If a critical problem takes place while you are performing changes to the system, you can use System Restore to return your device to a previous working state through a restore point without losing your files.
Here is how you can enable System Restore in Windows 10:
Note: By clicking the Delete button, you will remove all restore points. Make sure you do not delete a previous restore point before creating a new one. You can delete older restore points if you need to free up space.
Windows 10 will now create a new restore point when completing a new update or after specific system changes. You can also create restore points manually before making system changes.
Drivers are updated with every Windows 10 update. But third-party drivers can cause Windows update installation problems that show up as an error that begins with 0xC1900101. Check all third-party drivers and update them if necessary.
Here is how you can update the drivers.
If Windows 10 has more startup tasks to complete, the update can take longer. Removing startup programs will speed up the update. Here’s how you can do it:
Keep only your mouse and keyboard connected. If there are any non-essential devices (like external storage devices and drives) connected to your PC or laptop while updating Windows 10, the update installation can slow down.
This is because Windows 10 is attempting to detect them and search for appropriate drivers. Even storage devices such as a USB flash drive or peripherals like docks can interfere with the update.
We have put together some of the best practices when it comes to Windows 10 updates so you know how to prepare your device, how to protect your files, what might slow down the update, and more. Despite your best intentions, the next update can get stuck for some unforeseen reasons. There are ways to troubleshoot that too and make the whole process less nerve-wracking.
When Windows Update fails, here’s what you need to do.
About The Author