Fixing Stuck in Configuring Windows update Issue on Windows 7

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I have a Windows 7 computer stuck in the dead stage of “Configuring Windows Update” screen the other day for quite a while without getting any chance moving forward. First, it was stuck at 100% complete for over an hour. Then, it was stuck at 35% after I shut it down and tried to boot again.

Configuring windows update 35% complete

I tried to boot to Safe Mode, Safe Mode with Network, or Safe Mode with Command Prompt. They all ended up the same result, stuck in the Configuring Windows updates screen.

I ended up having to boot from a bootable WinPE USB drive and run the following command to revert a pending update action on Windows.

dism.exe /image:c:\ /cleanup-image /revertpendingactions

You may check to find the drive letter that hosts the Windows 7 system. It’s located at C: most of the time but it could also be placed at D: sometime.

Also, check out the post that shows you How To Build A Windows 10-Based WinPE USB Bootable Drive.

After rebooting the computer, Windows will try to revert the changes it made earlier. It may take a bit time to complete the process but it will eventually lead you back to the login screen.

Failure configuring windows updates - reverting changes

You may also try to delete the following file before attempting the DISM reverting approach. I couldn’t locate this file in my case but you may be able to find it on your computer.

C:\Windows\WinSXS\pending.xml

Either way, it should be able to bring back the login screen for you. Once you log in and settled, I recommend you run Windows Update again to keep your Windows computer up-to-date.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Updates always worry me. I’ve felt a little better about them in Win10, but still.

    I remember one update that looked like it had stalled but when I searched for some help it turned out that it could sit at the same ‘percentage complete’ for hours without being stuck. Sure enough it eventually completed.

    I have always wished Microsoft had invested a little more effort into making it much clearer when something was or wasn’t happening with updates.

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