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Fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes

If you are facing We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes,  Don’t turn off your computer message, and you are stuck in a boot loop, then you will be glad you came here because this post is going to help you fix this error.

Well, Windows 10 is the latest edition of Microsoft Operating System and like all the other OS this sure seems to have a lot of issues too. But the one which we are particularly talking about here is while downloading the new updates and restarting the PC, the update process just stuck and Windows could not start and all we are left with is this annoying error message:

Fix We couldn't complete the updates, Undoing changes

We couldn't complete the updates, Undoing changes, Don't turn off your computer.

And we are just stuck in an endless loop of this error and restarting our PC doesn’t get us anywhere except back to this error. In addition to the above error after restarting several times you may start to see some progress like this:

Installing Updates 15% We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes, Don’t turn off your computer Restarting

But we have a piece of bad news for you, unfortunately, this will only complete till 30% and then it will again restart and this will go on and on and on till you decide to do something about it, well you are here so I guess its time to fix this issue.

Anyway, if you are facing this error on your system, don’t worry as you can easily address the same by just following and applying the fixes from below. So without wasting any time let’s see How to Fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes issue with the help of the below-listed troubleshooting steps.

Fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes

NOTE: DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT REFRESH/RESET YOUR PC.

If you are able to log on to Windows:

Method 1: Delete Software Distribution Folder

1. Press Windows Key + X and select Command Prompt (Admin).

Command Prompt (Admin).

2. Now Type the following command inside cmd and hit enter after each one:

net stop wuauserv
net stop bits
net stop cryptSvc
net stop msiserver

Stop Windows update services wuauserv cryptSvc bits msiserver

3. Now browse to the C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution folder and delete all the files and folders inside.

delete everything inside SoftwareDistribution Folder

4. Again go to command prompt and type each of these commands and hit Enter:

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

Start Windows update services wuauserv cryptSvc bits msiserver

5. Restart your computer to save changes.

6. Again try installing the updates and this time you may be successful in installing updates.

7. If you are still facing some issues restore your PC to the date before downloading the updates.

Alternatively, whether you are able to log on to Windows or not, you should try Methods (c),(d), and (e).

Method 2: Download Windows Update Troubleshooter

1. Open your web browser and go to the following page.

2. Click on “Download and run the Windows Update Troubleshooter.

3. After the file has finished downloading, double-click on it to run.

4. Click Next and let Windows Update Troubleshooter run.

Windows Update Troubleshooter

5. Follow the on-screen instruction to complete the process.

6. If a problem is found, click on Apply this fix.

7. Finally, try again to install the updates and this time you won’t face We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes error message.

Method 3: Enable App Readiness

1. Press Windows Key + R then type services.msc and hit enter.

services windows

2. Navigate to App Readiness and right click then select Properties.

3. Now set the Startup type to Automatic and click Start.

start App Readiness

4. Click Apply followed by OK and close the services.msc window.

5. Restart your PC and you may be able to fix couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes error message.

Method 4: Disable Automatic Updates

1. Press Windows Key + R then type services.msc and hit enter.

services.msc windows

2. Navigate to Windows Update setting and right click then select Properties.

3. Now click Stop and select Startup type to Disabled.

stop windows update and set startup type to disabled

4. Click Apply followed by OK and close the services.msc window.

5. Restart your PC and again try installing updates.

See if you’re able to Fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes issue, if not then continue.

Method 5: Increase Windows System Reserved Partition Size

NOTE: If you use BitLocker, uninstall or delete it.

1. You can increase the reserved partition size manually or by this Partition Manager Software.

2. Press Windows Key + X and click on Disk Management.

disk management

3. Now to extend the size of Reserved Partition you must have some unallocated space or you have to create some.

4. To create it, right-click on one of your partitions (Excluding OS partition) and select Shrink Volume.

shrink volume

5. Finally, right-click on Reserved Partition and select Extend Volume.

extend volume system reserved

6. Restart your PC and you will be able to fix we couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes message.

Method 6: Run Windows 10 Update Troubleshooter

You can also solve the We couldn’t complete the updates issue by running “Windows Update troubleshooter”. This will take a few minutes and will automatically detect & fix your problem.

1. Press Windows Key + I to open Settings then click on Update & Security.

Press Windows Key + I to open Settings then click on Update & security icon

2. From the left-hand menu make sure to select Troubleshoot.

3. Now under Get up and running section, click on Windows Update.

4. Once you click on it, click on “Run the troubleshooter” under Windows Update.

Select Troubleshoot then under Get up and running click on Windows Update

5. Follow on-screen instructions to run the troubleshooter and see if you’re able to Fix We couldn’t complete the updates Undoing changes issue.

Run Windows Update Troubleshooter to fix Windows Modules Installer Worker High CPU Usage

Method 7: If all else fails then install the Updates Manually

1. Right-click on “This PC” and select Properties.

Right click on the This PC folder. A menu will pop

2. Now in System Properties, check the System type and see if you have a 32-bit or 64-bit OS.

Under System type you will get the information about your system architecture

3. Press Windows Key + I to open Settings then click on Update & Security icon.

Press Windows Key + I to open Settings then click on Update & security icon

4. Under Windows Update note down the “KB number of the update which fails to install.

Under Windows Update note down the KB number of the update which fails to install

5. Next, open Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge then navigate to Microsoft Update Catalog website.

Note: Link only work in Internet Explorer or Edge.

6. Under the search box, type the KB number you noted in step 4.

Open Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge then navigate to Microsoft Update Catalog website

7. Now click on the Download button next to the latest update for your OS type i.e. 32-bit or 64-bit.

8. Once the file is downloaded, double-click on it and follow on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

Method 8: Miscellaneous Fixes

1.Run CCleaner to fix registry issues.

2. Create a new Admin account and try installing updates from that account.

3. If you know which updates are causing problems manually download the updates and install them.

4. Delete any VPN services installed on your PC.

5. Disable Firewall and Antivirus, then again try installing the updates.

6. If nothing works, again download the Windows and then try installing the updates.

If you are not able to log on to Windows and stuck in a restart loop.

IMPORTANT: After you are able to log on to Windows try all the above-mentioned methods.

Important Disclaimer:
These are very advanced tutorial, if you don’t know what you’re doing then you may accidentally harm your PC or perform some steps incorrectly that will ultimately make your PC unable to boot to Windows. So if you don’t know what you’re doing, please take help from any technician or expert supervision is recommended. 

Method (i): System Restore

1. Restart your Windows 10.

2. As the system restarts enter into BIOS setup and configure your PC to boot from CD/DVD.

3. Insert the Windows 10 bootable installation DVD and restart your PC.

4. When prompted to Press any key to boot from CD or DVD, press any key to continue.

Press any key to boot from CD or DVD

5. Select your language preferences, and click Next. Click Repair your computer in the bottom-left.

Repair your computer

6. On choose an options screen, click Troubleshoot.

Choose an option at windows 10 automatic startup repair

7. On Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced option.

Click Advanced Options automatic startup repair

8. On Advanced options screen, click System Restore.

system restore

9. Select a restore point before the current update and restore your computer.

10. When the Windows restart you won’t see we couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes message.

11. Finally, try method 1 and then install the latest updates.

Method (ii): Delete Problematic update files

1. Restart your Windows 10.

2. As the system restarts enter into BIOS setup and configure your PC to boot from CD/DVD.

3. Insert the Windows 10 bootable installation DVD and restart your PC.

4. When prompted to Press any key to boot from CD or DVD, press any key to continue.

Press any key to boot from CD or DVD

5. Select your language preferences, and click Next. Click Repair your computer in the bottom-left.

Repair your computer

6. On choose an options screen, click Troubleshoot.

7. On Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced option.

8. On Advanced options screen, click Command Prompt.

Fix we couldn't complete the updates, Undoing changes open command prompt

9. Type these commands in cmd and press enter after each one:

cd C:\Windows\
del C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution*.* /s /q

10. Close Command prompt and restart your PC. You will be able to log on to Windows normally.

Finally, try installing the update and you will be able to fix we couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes error message.

Method (iii): Run SFC and DISM

1. Open Command Prompt at boot.

2. Type the following command and hit Enter:

Sfc /scannow

SFC scan now command prompt

3. Let System File Check (SFC) run as it usually takes 5-15 minutes to complete.

4. Now type the following in cmd (Sequential order is important) and hit enter after each one:

a) Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
b) Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
c) Dism /online /Cleanup-Image /startcomponentcleanup
d) DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

#WARNING: This is not a fast process, component cleanup can take almost 5 hours.

DISM restore health system

5. After running DISM it is a good idea to re-run SFC /scannow to make sure all the issues were fixed.

6. Restart your computer and this time updates will be installed without any problem.

Method (iv): Disable Secure Boot

1. Restart your PC.

2. When the system restart Enter the BIOS setup by pressing a key during the bootup sequence.

3. Find the Secure Boot setting, and if possible, set it to Enabled. This option is usually in either the Security tab, the Boot tab, or the Authentication tab.

Disable Secure Boot

#WARNING: After disabling Secure Boot it may be difficult to re-activate Secure Boot without restoring your PC to the factory state.

4. Restart your PC and update will be installed successfully without any error message we couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes.

5. Again Enable the Secure Boot option from BIOS setup.

Method (v): Delete the System Reserved partition

1. Open Command Prompt and type each of the following commands, hit enter after each one:

bcdboot C:\Windows /s C:\
diskpart
list vol
select vol (Select System Volume)
act
list vol
select vol (Select System Reserved Volume)
inactive
exit

disk part commands

Configure BCD:

bcdedit /set {bootmgr} device partition=C:
bcdedit /set {default} device partition=C:
bcdedit /set {default} osdevice partition=C:

2. Before making any changes or rebooting, make sure that you have Windows installation DVD or WinPE/WinRE Cd or USB flash Drive in the case of Windows Boot failure. If Windows doesn’t boot, use the Windows installation disk or WinPE/WinRE to boot and at the command prompt type (How to create WinPE Bootable USB):

bootrec /fixmbr
bootrec /fixboot
bootrec /rebuildbcd

bootrec rebuildbcd fixmbr fixboot

3. Once rebooted, move WinRE from the system reserved partition to the system partition.

4. Again open Command Prompt and type the following command, hit enter after each one:

Assign a drive letter to the recovery partition in Diskpart:

diskpart
list vol
select vol <Recovery Volume>
assign let=R
Disable WinRE:
reagentc /disable

Remove WinRE from Reserved partition:

rd R:\Recovery

Copy WinRE to System partition:

robocopy C:\Windows\System32\Recovery\ R:\Recovery\WindowsRE\ WinRE.wim /copyall /dcopy:t

Configure WinRE:

reagentc /setreimage /path C:\Recovery\WindowsRE

Enable WinRE:

reagentc /enable

5. For future use, create a new partition at the end of the drive (after the OS partition) and store WinRE and an OSI folder (Original System Installation) which contains all files contained within the Windows 10 DVD. Please make sure that you have enough free space on your hard disk to create this partition drive (usually 100GB). And if you choose to make this partition, it’s important that you set the partition ID flag to 27 (0x27) using Diskpart, as it specifies that it is a Recovery partition.

Recommended for you:

If nothing works then Restore your PC to an earlier time, delete the problematic update from Control Panel, disable the automatic updates and use your PC normally till Microsoft work towards fixing this update problem. In a few days probably 20-30 days try installing the updates again, if successful congratulations but if you are again stuck, then try the above methods, and this time you may succeed.

That’s it you have successfully fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes. Don’t turn off your computer issue and if you still have any queries regarding this update please feel to ask them in comments.

nv-author-image

Aditya Farrad

Aditya is a self-motivated information technology professional and has been a technology writer for the last 7 years. He covers Internet services, mobile, Windows, software, and How-to guides.

20 thoughts on “Fix We couldn’t complete the updates, Undoing changes”

  1. Hi my couldnt complete updates happens when i tried to upgrade from wins home to wins pro
    It goes thru all the updates and upgrade but when half way thru screen turns to we couldnt complete update un doing changes
    I have done all your things above and still no help.. also i reboot home again reinstalled again but no. I need help i want to get to pro for work

  2. I will be waiting for you guys to hook up more troubleshoots on Linux, deb and arch. Especially PCI passthrough, iptables…etc. Once again, appreciated this in-depth approach into troubleshooting a lame microsoft error(just read the description under “App Readiness”… wth.)

  3. Just for your info…

    PROBLEM

    Update KB4025336 : After Restarting,
    ” We couldn’t complete the updates. Undoing Changes “.

    SOLUTION

    I tried almost everything and nothing worked except…

    Uninstall The Antivirus software.
    In my case, this is “BitDefender Internet Security 2018 ” (or was it 2017?)
    I don’t know if I had any quarantined files. I don’t think so.
    When you do the uninstall, it will ask if you want to save the quarentines.
    I answered no.

    Redownload Antivirus.
    ( i.e. don’t re-use an old installation’s executable.
    It may very well have a bug ).

    Think of the stress this is causing system administrators and their managers.
    Awful.

    Turning Antivirus Off is fairly well known.
    Having to uninstall it, this is a first for me.

  4. Clarification of my previous post…
    1) Uninstall Antivirus
    2) Check For Updates ( over and over again, until up to date ).
    3) Then (re) install Antivirus software

  5. A little more information that may be helpful to finding this solution in google results….
    * Windows 8.1 Professional
    * installed on GPT / UEFI ( i.e CSM = disabled )
    * on an i7-4771 CPU, Code Name = Haswell

  6. More clarification…
    Uninstalling BitDefender did indeed allow Microsoft Windows Updates to install successfully.
    However, once all updates were installed, including updates for my USB connected printer, an HP Officejet J3600 Series (driver), printing failed.
    The ROOT CAUSE of my Windows Updates problem was MICROSOFT and having my Printer’s USB connected while doing a clean MS Windows install and Updates.
    ( BitDefender AntiVirus was not the ” ROOT” cause ).

    SOLUTION: Install Windows 8.1 and updates with Printer USB DISCONNECTED.
    Change Windows Update settings to NEVER CHECK.
    Then downloaded the HP Officeject J3600 Series driver.
    Connect the Printer USB.
    Install the printer driver.
    ( After this, Windows Updates will no longer attempt to install their printer driver update and fail ).

    Dang.
    It seems BitDefender recognized the Windows Updates for the Printer driver are a problem, but their exception handling / reporting the problem to the user does not exist.
    But again, ( it seems ) the root cause is Microsoft’s update containing the printer driver.
    Disconnect the Printer USB when installing MS Windows and getting updates.

    1. I used my Win 10 USB installer and did a System Restore. Though I have to reinstall some software, my computer is running properly now. I disabled Auto-Updates, and won’t be updating until I really need to.

  7. How do you restart Windows 10 if it’s frozen and you can’t access Windows 10? A hard reboot with the power button merely takes me back into the same “Don’t turn off computer” screen that eventually freezes. And by “frozen” I mean the animated circle doesn’t move and my mouse pointer is also frozen / doesn’t respond.

  8. In method B shouldn’t it be?
    Del C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\*.* /s /Q

    not
    Del C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution*.* /s /Q

  9. My laptop is not open how can i do that from cmd etc its just a plain screen with “undoing changes mode to ur computer” and cant type anything pls help

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