We couldn't install some updates because the pc was…


If your Windows fails to update, you may see the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” error message. If you are looking for some efficient methods to get rid of this issue, then this post written by acthan.vn will tell you the answer.

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If you encounter the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” error while trying to run Windows Update on your Windows 10, you should keep reading.


This issue may be caused by corrupted or missing Windows Updates, third-party antivirus software, etc. Then, the next part is about the methods to fix the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” error.

Fix: We Couldn’t Install Some Updates Because the PC Was Turned off

First, you should verify if the updates are installed or not. For this, go to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > View installed update history. If you can confirm that updates have been installed, you just need to ignore the error message. If updates failed to be installed, move to the next steps to troubleshoot.

Fix 1: Disable Third-Party Antivirus Software

If Windows 10 couldn’t be installed, the culprit might be third-party antivirus software. So if you have installed one on your computer, it is recommended to disable it to fix the error.

However, if this way doesn’t work, then you can try to uninstall your third-party antivirus completely and then update your operating system. This post - Multiple Ways to Disable Avast for PC and Mac Temporarily/Completely may be the one you need.

You don’t need to worry about your computer’s safe because there is a strong built-in antivirus on Windows 10 – Windows Defender protecting your PC.

If you have uninstalled the third-party anti-virus software, you still can’t update Windows, then you need to try the following methods.

Fix 2: Perform Clean Boot

If the previous fix doesn’t work, you can clean boot your computer and determine what is causing the issue in this solution. There may be a third-party application running in the background that prevents the Windows Update from downloading the updates. The steps are as follows:

Step 1: Press the Windows + R keys at the same time to launch the Run application, then type msconfig and click OK.

Step 2: Navigate to the Services tab and check the Hide all Microsoft services option.


Step 3: Now click the Disable all button to disable all of the third-party services.

Step 4: Then click Apply to save changes and exit. Then all of the Microsoft related services will be left and all of the third-party services will be disabled.

Step 5: Now navigate to the Startup tab and click the Open Task Manager option. Then you will be redirected to the task manager.


Step 6: Select each service one by one and click the Disable button.

Now you can restart your computer and try to install updates. If it works properly, it means that the issue is caused by some service or application. You can launch Task Manager again and try enabling each application one by one to check the behavior. Then you can find out the application that causes the issue.

After that, check to see if the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” error still exists or not.

Fix 3: Delete SoftwareDistribution Folder

In this section, we walk through the third method to fix the “Windows 10 couldn’t be installed” issue. To delete the contents of the Windows SoftwareDistribution folder, you can follow the steps.

Step 1: Type Command Prompt in the Search menu. Then right-click it to choose Run as administrator:

Step 2: Run the following commands one by one and press Enter:

net stop wuauserv

net stop cryptSvc

net stop bits

net stop msiserver

Step 3: Now go to the C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution folder and delete all the files & folders inside by pressing the Ctrl+A keys to select all and then right-clicking to choose Delete.


If files are in use and you cannot delete some files, then you should restart your device. Run the above command again after restarting. Now you will be able to delete files from the Software Distribution folder on Windows 10.

After emptying this folder, you can either restart your computer or type the following command one by one in Command Prompt and press Enter to restart Windows Update related services:

net start wuauserv

net start cryptSvc

net start bits

net start msiserver

Tip: Here is more information about SoftwareDistribution Folder. If you are interested in it, read this post - How to Rename or Delete Software Distribution Folder on Windows.

Now, run Windows Update again and check to see if you still can’t update Windows. If the error still exists, try the next fix – Windows Update troubleshooter.

Fix 4: Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter

Windows Update Troubleshooter is a built-in feature designed to fix Windows update errors for common users. You can use it to fix the “you can’t update Windows” issue. Now you can follow the instructions step by step below to run Windows Update Troubleshooter:

Step 1: Type Settings in the Search box to open it. Navigate to the Update & Security section and then select Troubleshoot in the left panel.

Step 2: Click Windows Update under the Get up and running section in the right panel and then click Run the troubleshooter.


Step 3: Wait for the scanning process to detect the existing problems and then click Apply this fix.

Step 4: Follow the instructions showing on the screen to finish the repair process.

Reboot your computer and try to update your Windows to check if the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” error still exists. If this method cannot fix the error, then you can try the next methods.

Fix 5: Install the Windows Updates Manually

You can also try installing the Windows Updates manually. Here is how to do that:

Step 1: Open the Settings application again and go to the Update & Security section. Then click View update history.

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Step 2: Copy the recent KB number of the Windows Update package.

Step 3: Go to the Microsoft Update Catalog website. Paste the KB number of the Windows Update package in the Search box and press Enter.

Step 4: Click the Download button and a popup window will appear. In the popup window, click the .msu file link to download it.

When the file has finished downloading, double-click the .msu file and Windows will install the new update. Then the “Windows can’t install updates” issue should be fixed.

Fix 6: Perform a Clean Install

If all of the methods don’t work, the last method for you to fix the “Windows 10 couldn’t be installed” issue is to clean install your computer. The steps are as follows:

Tip: Reinstalling the system may cause data loss. Thus, you had better back up your important data before performing a clean install.

Step 1: You need to create a USB boot disk from an ISO file. If you don’t know how to do that, this post - How to Create Bootable USB from ISO Windows 10 for Clean Install is what you need.

Step 2: Identify and select your Language, Time and currency format, and Keyboard or input method in the below-shown window. Then click Next.


Step 3: Click Install Now to continue. You should choose I don’t have a product key and your copy of Windows will be automatically activated later.

Step 4: Select the operating system you want to install.

Step 5: Accept the license terms. Then, choose the type of installation and choose the second option.


Step 6: Next, choose where you want to install Windows. You should choose the partition with the current installation of Windows.

After finishing the installation process, you need to follow the on-screen instructions to configure the settings. Then try to run Windows Update again, and the error should be fixed.

Here is all the information on how to fix the “we couldn’t finish installing updates Windows 10” issue.

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Useful Suggestion

After fixing the “Windows 10 couldn’t be installed” error, what should you do? It is recommended to create a system image. Speak of creating a system image, it is highly recommended to use acthan.vn ShadowMaker – a piece of professional and powerful backup and restore software.

You can use acthan.vn ShadowMaker to back up files and folders, disks and partitions, and also the operating system. And in addition to restoring the system backup to the original device, you can also do the universal restore when restoring to a different computer with dissimilar hardware.

What’s more, you can use it to sync files and folders to other locations and use the Disk Clone feature to create a bootable external hard drive. And you can use it for free within 30 days. Now, click the following button to download acthan.vn ShadowMaker Trial.

Free Download

Now, I will show you how to create a system image with professional backup software.

Step 1: Launch acthan.vn ShadowMakeer. Click Keep Trial, and click Connect in This Computer to enter its main interface.


Step 2: After entering its main interface, go to the Backup page. acthan.vn ShadowMaker chooses the system as the backup source by default.

Step 3: Click the Destination module to choose the backup destination. Here are four available paths including Administrator, Libraries, Computer, and the Shared.


Step 4: After selecting the backup source and destination, you can perform the backup task immediately. Or click the Back up Later button to delay the task.


When the backup process is finished, the system image is successfully created.

Note: In order to boot the computer to perform some recovery solutions when the system crashes, it’s recommended you to create bootable media in advance.

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Bottom Line

In short, if you are facing the “We couldn’t install some updates because the PC was turned off” issue and have no idea of how to fix it, then you can find the workable methods in this post. In addition, in order to safeguard your system, you had better back up your system regularly.

If you have any better advice to fix the error or have any confusion about the methods, leave a comment below or send an email to .



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Position: Columnist

She was graduated from the major in English. She has been the acthan.vn editor since she was graduated from university. She specializes in writing articles about backing up data & systems, cloning disks, and syncing files, etc. She is also good at writing articles about computer knowledge and computer issues. In daily life, she likes running and going to the amusement park with friends to play some exciting items.