In this guide, we will discuss what causes a stuck Windows 11 update and the possible solutions that might fix this issue. Updates are considered very important when it comes to the Windows ecosystem as users often get into one or more problems on a regular basis. As Microsoft always tries to introduce new features and functionalities, there are times when you get into trouble despite getting those new features.
Though a stuck Windows update issue was always there, users are now getting this bug on their Windows 11 OS as well. The solutions, however, remain the same with a slight change in the steps due to the new overhauling of the Settings page.
What causes a stuck update on Windows 11?
Windows 11 updates normally fail or get stuck when your device meets one or more of the below conditions –
- Disabled update-related services
- Corrupted Windows update components
- You have installed a buggy or problematic program
- Presence of third-party antivirus or running Windows Defender
Fix Windows 11 Update Stuck at 0% or 100%
If the Windows 11 update is stuck at 0, 35, 100, or any other percentage and you are wondering what to do next, try out these suggestions, and see if any resolve this issue –
1] Run Windows Update troubleshooter
Just like Windows 10 and its older versions, Windows 11 also comes pre-installed with troubleshooting tools. Since you are facing update-related issues, try the update troubleshooter first. To do so, use the steps outlined below –
- Use Win + I to launch the Settings app.
- Click System on the left pane.
- On the right side, click troubleshoot and then Other troubleshooters.
- When the opted section expands, hit the Run button available beside Windows update.
- The system will launch the troubleshooting settings window.
- Click Next and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the remaining steps.
After you have troubleshot the Windows update, restart Windows, and check if you can now update Windows 11 without it failing at some certain percentage.
2] Check and Enable Windows update services
For Windows updates or installations to complete successfully, there are certain services that must remain running all the time. Windows Update and BITS are two such services that when disabled might prevent Windows 11 from updating normally.
Here’s how to check their current status and enable them if found not running –
- Right-click on the Windows icon and select Run.
- Type “
services.msc“, and hit OK.
- When the services window launches, scroll down and locate the following two services –
Background Intelligent Transfer Service Windows Update
- If found disabled, right-click on that and click Start, else Restart.
- Alternatively, you may double-click on the service to open its Properties window. Using the drop-down menu next to the Startup type, select “Automatic” and hit Start.
- Reboot your PC next and see if you can now update your Windows.
3] Clear SoftwareDistribution contents
Sometimes, updates also fail or get stuck at a certain percentage when the cache folders are filled with unnecessarily stored data. You may address this issue simply by clearing all Windows cache folders. The important such folders are –
- SoftwareDistribution – C:\Windows
- Catroot2 – C:\Windows\System32
Note: Before you purge both these folders, make sure to disable the following services. They are BITS, Windows Update, and cryptographic.
To purge cache folders, reach out to the path mentioned above, and delete all the contents present inside.
4] Disable Third-party antivirus
Third-party antivirus software is often known to interfere with system files or folders. This unwanted interaction may prevent Windows updates from occurring normally or the update gets stuck at 0%, 35%, or any other percentage.
In order to fix this issue, you should temporarily disable or uninstall the security apps. In case you are using Windows Defender, try to disable this system app as well. After you disable the antivirus program, reboot your PC, and see if you can now update your Windows 11 PC.
Note: If you had installed some programs recently on your computer and this problem started ever since consider uninstalling or removing that application.
5] Boot into the Safe Mode
If you are still facing a stuck Windows 11 update, you should try booting into Safe Mode, and retry the installing updates. Clean boot stops all external apps and services and hence there won’t be any interferences from third-party programs.
Here’s how to enter the Clean boot state on Windows 11 –
- Click the Start button and type “system configuration”.
- Double-click on the well-matching result next.
- When the System Configuration app opens up, go to the Services tab.
- Check the box “Hide all Microsoft services”, and hit Disable all.
- Go to the Boot tab next. Under Boot options, mark the checkbox left of “
Safe boot“, and hit Apply > OK.
6] Reset your PC
In case none of the above fixes help to resolve a stuck Windows 11 update issue, you are left with only one option and that is resetting your PC. Here’s how you may reset your Windows 11 PC –
- Press Win + I to launch the Settings app.
- Go to System > Recovery, and hit “Reset PC” under Reset this PC.
- Hit Keep my files. The system will configure this setting and present you with two options to choose from.
- If you already have Windows 11 ISO image, click Local reinstall. Else, hit Cloud download.
- Keep pressing Next and at last, Finish to begin resetting your PC.
I hope the solutions above indeed help you resolve a stuck Windows 11 update on your PC.
How to Fix and Avoid Broken Windows Updates
The Windows updates may also fail to install and remain stuck at a certain percentage if you have downloaded a faulty update file. To fix or avoid installing broken Windows updates, follow these easy steps –
- Press Windows + X to launch the Power Menu.
- Go to Terminal (Admin), and click Yes on the appeared UAC window.
- The terminal will default launch into Windows PowerShell (Admin).
- Copy/paste the following code on it and press Enter –
- This will ask for your permission to install and import the NuGet provider. Well, type “Y” and press Enter again so that the NuGet package is installed.
- Since you are installing a package from an external source, you might receive a warning message mentioning the same. Type “A” and press Enter to confirm allowing all the changes on your PC.
- You may now check for pending updates for your Windows version directly over here. To do this, run this command –
- The PowerShell will now check for pending updates for your operating system. If it finds any updates for your Windows PC, PowerShell will further ask for permission to install this update.
- Type “A” again and press Enter to provide your consent. In the end, execute the below command to install the available update on your computer –
That’s it, the broken updates will now correct on their own and they must install automatically on your computer.
Installing Optional Updates in Windows 11
Microsoft has brought all driver updates and firmware updates under the same section i.e. Windows Update. So, you need not require opening Device Manager and check pending driver updates there.
From now onward, you may directly go to Settings > Windows Update > Advanced Options > Additional Options, and check if you see any updates under Optional updates. If you do see some updates here, click to expand this section, tick all the checkboxes, and hit Download and Install.
That’s it, you have successfully installed all optional updates on your computer.