Error 0xc1900204 While Attempting Windows Update

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Windows Updates are rolled out to add extra features or introduce new features on the Windows platform. However, there are instances when updating Windows becomes a headache due to errors. One of these errors is error 0xc1900204.

What Causes the Error 0xc1900204 During Windows Update?

The error 0xc1900204 that shows during a Windows Update is a code that tells you that there are system files on your Windows OS that have been misconfigured. There are numerous reasons why this error code shows, and we’ve listed some below:

  • malware entities
  • power surge or sudden power outage
  • complete system crash
  • Windows update issues
  • incompatible versions
  • bad sector in the hard disk
  • program crash while downloading

Now, what to do about the error 0xc1900204 in Windows 10/11?

How to Fix Windows Update Error 0xc1900204

You can easily resolve the error 0xc1900204 in Windows 10/11 by trying any of the solutions below.

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Solution #1: Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter

Your Windows 10/11 device has a built-in utility that can be used to resolve problems associated with Windows Update. It’s called the Windows Update Troubleshooter. So, if you come across the error 0xc1900204 during a Windows Update, run this tool first.

Here’s how to use it:

  1. Press the Windows + I keys simultaneously to launch Settings.
  2. Select Update and Security.
  3. Go to the Troubleshoot tab and navigate to the Get up and running section.
  4. Click Windows Update.
  5. Follow the on-screen prompts to finish the troubleshooting process.
  6. Restart your PC and check if the error is resolved.

Solution #2: Reset your Windows Update components

If there are problems with any Windows Update services, you may come across the error code 0xc1900204. To fix this, you have to reset all the components of the Windows Update utility.

To reset the Windows Update components, do the following:

  1. Input cmd into the Search field.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator.
  3. Type the commands below and hit Enter after each one of them:
    • net stop wuauserv
    • net stop cryptSvc
    • net stop bits
    • net stop msiserver
    • ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
    • ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 Catroot2.oldnet start wuauserv
    • net start cryptSvc
    • net start bits
    • net start msiserver
  4. Try to update Windows once again and see if the error still exists.

Solution #3: Use the Registry Editor

Yes, you can use the Registry Editor to resolve the 0xc1900204 error during Windows Update. Here’s how:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys altogether to launch the Run dialog box.
  2. Input regedit into the text field and hit OK. This will launch the Registry Editor.
  3. Go to this path: Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion.
  4. Right-click on ProgramFilesDir.
  5. Change the default value data to the location where you wish to install new programs.
  6. Hit OK to save your changes.
  7. Reboot your PC, and then check if the error is now gone.

Solution #4: Disable any third-party antivirus suite

Antivirus programs are designed to protect your Windows computer. However, there are times when they interfere with your system process, resulting in random error codes like the 0xc1900204 error. So, in this case, you may try to disable it temporarily to see if it gets rid of the problem.

If disabling your antivirus solution does not work, try to uninstall it temporarily. Hopefully, it resolves the error.

Solution #5: Run the SFC utility

Corrupted or damaged system files could trigger the 0xc1900204 error to appear. To fix this, you may run the System File Checker tool. Here’s how:

  1. Launch the Command Prompt utility as administrator.
  2. Into the command line, input the sfc /scannow command and hit Enter.
  3. Wait for the entire process to complete. Do not interrupt the process to avoid issues.
  4. Once the scan is complete, reboot your PC and check if the error is gone.

Solution #6: Make sure your default display language is English

While it sounds odd, it is possible that you are seeing the error 0xc1900204 because your default display language is not English. To change it, follow the instructions below:

  1. Launch the Registry Editor.
  2. Go to this path: Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Nls\Language.
  3. Right-click on InstallLanguage. Check if the Value data is set to 0409.
  4. After that, go to Settings and select Time and Language.
  5. Navigate to the Region and Language tab. Double-check your default display language. It should be English (United States). If it’s not, click Add a Language and install the US English language.
  6. Once done, reboot your PC and check if the error is resolved.

Solution #7: Use the Microsoft Update tool

Another way to resolve Windows Update-related issues is by using the Microsoft Update tool. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Download the tool here.
  2. Once the download is complete, launch it.
  3. Select the Keep files and programs option.
  4. Wait for the utility to complete its task. After which, check if the error still appears.

Solution #8: Free up system space

Often times, the lack of system storage can trigger error messages to appear. So, if you need more space to proceed with the Windows update, do the following:

  1. Go to Settings and click System.
  2. Select Storage.
  3. Go to the Local Disk C: section and navigate to Temporary files.
  4. Choose the items you want to remove to free up system space.
  5. Hit the Remove files button.

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Solution #9: Undo the Windows Update

If all else fails, you may try to undo the Windows Update. Follow the steps below and check if everything goes back to normal as before:

  1. Press the Windows + I keys to launch the Windows Settings utility.
  2. Select Update and Security.
  3. Go to Recovery.
  4. Under the Go back to the previous version of Windows 10/11 section, select Start Now.
  5. Choose a reason to uninstall your current Windows version.
  6. Hit Next.
  7. Click No, thanks.
  8. And then, hit Next twice to proceed.
  9. Lastly, click the Go back to the previous version option.

Wrapping Up

No matter what safety precautions you take, you cannot avoid Windows Update errors, especially if the Windows Update version itself is at fault. But lucky for you, there are fixes that can help you get rid of them. As for the case of the 0xc1900204 error, you can just refer to the solutions above and you should be all good in no time. Then again, if you are not sure what to do, let Windows professionals fix the problem for you.

What other Windows Update errors have you encountered? How did you deal with them? Share your experience in the comments!

Author Profile
Vicrey Dharmdas | Author

Vic is a tech enthusiast who loves to be up-to-date with the latest and greatest technology in the world. He creates content that educates and helps users with their tech-related questions. Vic manages our website to ensure that our readers have a seamless experience while browsing. He excels in troubleshooting errors and resolving Windows issues for gaming and work purposes.

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