Vista -> Cannot Check for Updates, Error Code 0x80070005

By almcneil
Jun 6, 2009
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  1. Techies,

    I have a tricky problem I an unable to solve for a customer. Her Vista Home Premium system is returning error code 0x80070005 "unable to check for updates" when running Windows Update.

    It first happened a few months ago. I was updating her system after doing some other work. Windows Update downloaded and installed abotu 12 updates and on restart I got the error code and error message. I was running out of time so we agreed to fix it the next week. Well, it took 3 months before I could get back there and she had another more serious issue which I fixed. Now that I can get back to fixing this one, I'm stumped! I believe I tried System Restore the last time but I'm not sure. I can't try it now because of the fix I did for the other problem wiped out the restore points history. I also noticed that the Widnows Security Center is blank, nothing appears. I pretty sure it a registry problem but not sure where.

    Any suggestions?

    -- Andy
  2. almcneil

    almcneil TechSpot Guru Topic Starter Posts: 1,554

    OK, I solved this one. Unfortunately, I didn't save the link for the web page that has the solution as I was at the cutomer's plaec and long time and left once I solved it.

    Man, I spent a lot of time and effort searching the Internet for the solution. Yes, it's a registry problem. There's a particular update from Microsoft for Vista that can cause this problem. What's irritating is that it knocks out Windows Update so you can't use standard utilities like System Restore or Windows Upgrade/Repair. I found a dozen or more other users who reported the problem but finding the solution was tough. Finally, some clever computer geek put together a batch file that repeatedly called a MS utility that can repair the registery. It ook 20 mins to run but it worked! Windows Update was running perfectly! Again, I was in a rush to leave so I forgot to save the link.
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