Windows 7: An error occurred while checking for new updates for your computer (Code 8024800A)

I have recently I have made Linux the primary OS on all my computers.
However, mostly due to Adobe Flash/Photoshop and other few important applications, I decided to leave Windows on a separate disk on each of the computers. (I’ve basically installed Linux into 2 new disks and left the existing Windows drives untouched, as secondary boot devices.)

So, today I needed to use Photoshop and therefore had to boot Windows 7.
Naturally, after not using it for at least 3 months, the first application I have opened was “Windows Update”.

To my surprise, I got an error while checking for them (code 8024800A) on both of my computers and from what I have read – this can happen if you do not check for updates for a while (EG: if you don’t use your computer for an extended period of time).
This may sound silly at first but it makes sense to me as I have just seen this on 2 separate machines.

This is what I’ve done to get it working again:

  1. Click on your “Start” button, then go to “All Programs” -> “Accessories”.  You should see an icon for “Command Prompt”. Right-click it, and click on “Run as administrator”.
  2. Type each of the following commands, one by one; followed by the “Enter” or “Return” (really, that old?) key.
    net stop wuauserv & net stop cryptSvc & net stop bits
    net stop msiserver & mkdir C:\8024800A\
    move C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution C:\8024800A\
    move C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 C:\8024800A\
    net start wuauserv & net start cryptSvc
    net start bits & net start msiserver

    Command Line Prompt output.

    Command Line Prompt output.

  3. Open a “Windows Update” window (like you would normally do to update your computer) and click on “Check for Updates”.  Wait for the process to finish.

You should now be able to update again.

NOTE: The process above will create a backup of the current files being used by your system at “C:\8024800A”.
It’s safe and encouraged to delete this folder once you confirm that Windows Update is working correctly.

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