Solutions When You’re Getting Windows Update Error Code 0x80070012

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Operating System Error Warning

Windows Updates are necessary for Windows 10/11 systems, especially because they push security updates to the computer. However, at times users encounter Windows Update error 0x80070012 while trying to update Windows 10/11. Windows error 0x80070012 is caused by a misconfigured system. This error usually occurs when you try updating your windows or any application. Indications of this mistake are freezing of your PC, system lagging. Automatic shutdown of any requests. The causes of this error are viruses and malware. Because the files get corrupted, and this may lead to Windows failure. Incomplete installation of any application or software driver can also be a cause of this error.

To resolve this error, you need to restore your system. Perform a full PC scan and uninstall all the recently installed programs. Or else you can download any PC repair tool and start scanning with the help of that repair tool.

What Is Windows Update Error Code 0x80070012?

Angry Man Using Laptop

Windows Update is a Microsoft service used to provide updates for Microsoft software, including Windows operating systems. Windows Update service provides updates in the form of patches and service packs. The main purpose of Windows Update is to keep operating systems updated with improved security features and enhancements. Every second Tuesday of the month is called “Patch Tuesday”, a day when Microsoft routinely releases patches and security updates for Windows operating system users.

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During the update process, Windows can produce various errors, including an error with code 0x80073712. This usually means that there are missing or damaged files required by Windows Update to perform the update. When an error code such as this appears, Windows Update cannot finish updating the operating system and install the updates. This error can be caused by an incomplete installation/uninstallation of software.

However, a lot of users reported getting Windows Update Error Code 0x80070012 when trying to update the printer driver.

Here is a sample error message for this case:

Canon driver update for Canon Inkjet MP830 Series – Error 0x80070012

The printer still works but may not be getting other updates until the error is fixed. Resetting windows also didn’t work.

Many users experienced the Windows Update error code 0x80073712 though it has been mostly reported on Windows 10/11 computers. Fortunately, there are several possible ways to solve the problem. In the guide below, we outline a number of solutions.

What Causes Windows Update Error Code 0x80070012?

Update Progress

As it turns out, there are several underlying causes that might be triggering this particular error code. Here’s a list of potential culprits that might be triggering the Windows Update error 0X80070012:

  • Common Windows Update issue – The ideal way to start troubleshooting this particular issue is to run the Windows Update Troubleshooter. If the problem is already covered by a repair strategy, the utility will be able to resolve the issue automatically.
  • WU service/s stuck in a limbo state – If the problem originates from an issue having to do with the state of several critical WU services that are neither opened or closed. In order to resolve this issue, you’ll need to reset every Windows component either via the automated agent or with a series of manual commands inside an elevated Command prompt.
  • System file corruption – Another fairly common scenario that will cause this issue is some kind of system file corruption that is affecting the WU component. Several users facing the same problem have managed to fix the issue by deploying SFC and DISM scans. in more serious circumstances, you might need to go for a repair install.
  • Corrupt Windows Registry Entries – Corrupt Windows registry entries can trigger the Windows Update Error 0x800f0805. This is because if Windows is unable to find the files needed for the update, it will be unable to boot properly. This will result in an error.
  • Unstable Internet Access – A stable internet connection is required to install a Windows update. If your connection is unstable, then you will likely encounter a Windows update error.
  • Disabled Windows Update Service – You need to enable the Windows Update service to be able to download and install a Windows update. Otherwise, an error message will be thrown.
  • Misconfiguration – If your Windows Update settings are not properly configured, then there is a chance that you will encounter the Windows Update Error 0x80070012.
  • Malicious EntitiesMalicious entities like viruses, malware, and adware are notorious culprits behind different Windows errors, and the Windows Update Error 0x80070012 is no exemption.

How to Fix Windows Update Error Code 0x80070012

Sleep Shutdown Restart

Restarting your computer is by far the easiest Windows Update Error 0xc1900201 fix and the first thing you should try when troubleshooting this error. Sometimes, the glitches that cause the update error can be fixed by restarting the computer. Close all the apps and documents you are working on so you don’t lose any progress. Restart your computer, then try and run the update again.

You also need to check your internet connection. Your network connection may interfere with the downloading of the update and consequently lead to this error. To fix this, try switching to a LAN connector if you are on Wi-Fi or vice versa. Once done, try downloading and installing the update again.

You should also consider disabling your firewall and antivirus temporarily because they are the main culprits when it comes to blocking Windows Update. A strict antivirus software suite or firewall will likely cause this issue. The best way to go about fixing this error is to disable the antivirus security suite installed and check if the issue occurs or not. If it doesn’t, then it’s best to uninstall the existing third-party security suite and install a reputable, trusted anti-malware utility.

If the above solutions don’t work, then you should try the solutions below:

Fix #1: Force Restart Windows.

One possibility why you’re seeing the update error is that your system is in the middle of installing another update. This may happen if Windows 10/11 automatically downloaded and installed an update and required a restart to complete the process.

So, if an update is available and you try to install it, it may end up failing with the Windows Update error code 0x80070012. To resolve this, you have to allow your operating system to finish installing the pending update.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Click the Start menu and hit the Update and Restart button.
  2. Windows will now restart and complete installing the pending update.
  3. After your computer boots up, go back to the Windows Update utility and install the newest update.
  4. The error should now be fixed. Otherwise, proceed to another fix.

Fix #2: Run Windows Update Under Clean Boot.

Clean Boot is a process used to launch the Windows OS utilizing the minimum set of resources which include drivers and programs. This approach helps prevent software conflicts that may occur during program installation, an update, or when running a particular program.

Note that there is a difference between Safe Mode and Clean Boot with the former engaging an extra mile to troubleshoot and diagnose advanced issues related to the Windows 10/11 system.

Here is how to launch the system under Clean Boot State:

  1. On the Taskbar search field, type “MSConfig” (no quotes) and press the Enter key to launch the System Configuration window.
  2. Under the General tab, enter the Selective Startup field and uncheck the Load Startup Items box. Make sure the Load system services, as well as Use original boot configuration boxes, remain checked.
  3. Now, go to the Service tab and check the box next to Hide all Microsoft services before clicking on Disable all.
  4. Click Apply, followed by the OK button before restarting the machine.
  5. In the next startup, Windows will load under Clean Boot State.

You may then try to install the pending Windows Updates without experiencing the Error Code 0x80070012.

Fix #3: Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter.

Windows Update Troubleshooter Steps

If force restarting your computer did not get rid of the issue, run the Windows Update Troubleshooter utility instead. According to some users, they were able to resolve the error by running the tool.

In case you are wondering what the Windows Update Troubleshooter is, it is basically an in-built utility on Windows 10/11 devices that are used to identify and resolve Windows Update-related errors and glitches. The Windows Update Troubleshooter contains dozens of repair strategies that will be applied automatically if some type of inconsistency is found. If the scan finds a viable repair strategy, the utility will automatically recommend a viable fix that you can apply with a simple click.

To run this tool, follow these steps:

  1. Launch the Run utility by pressing the Windows + R keys.
  2. Type ms-settings:troubleshoot into the text field and hit Enter. This should open the Windows Update troubleshoot
  3. Now, go to the Troubleshoot Scroll down through the list of suggestions and click Windows Update.
  4. Select Run the Troubleshooter.Windows Troubleshooter
  5. Wait as the troubleshooter finds any potential issues with the Windows Update utility.
  6. Once the tool has completed the analysis, hit the Apply and Fix button.
  7. Finally, wait for the process to finish.
  8. Restart your computer.

If the 0X80070012 is still occurring when you attempt to install the pending update or the Windows Update troubleshooter didn’t find a viable repair strategy, move down to the next potential fix below.

Fix #4: Remove Pending XMLFile.

command prompt - trustedinstaller

If you are unable to update the Windows operating system, you might want to remove the pending .xml file and try to start the Windows Update process again. Open Command Prompt as administrator and type the following commands (remember to press the Enter key after you type each command):

  • net stop trustedinstaller
  • cd %windir%\winsxs
  • takeown /f pending.xml /a
  • cacls pending.xml /e /g everyone:f
  • del pending.xml

If you receive a message stating that “The Windows Modules Installer service is not started”, simply ignore it and continue executing commands by pressing Enter after: remove pending xml file

Restart the computer and try to update Windows again. See if this fixes the Windows Update error code 0x80073712 that prevents you from updating the Windows operating system.

Fix #5: Reset Every Windows Update Component.

If the Windows Update troubleshooter was not able to resolve the 0X80070012 error, you’re likely dealing with a persisting bug that is affecting the Windows Update component.

In this case, you should go ahead and deploy the same repair strategies in order to reset every Windows Update component that might be causing issues with your pending Windows updates.

Note: The most common instance that will cause this kind of issue is one or more WU (Windows Update) components that are currently stuck in a limbo state (they’re neither open nor closed).

If this scenario is applicable, you will be able to fix the problem by resetting all WU components that are involved in the updating process.

Here are two different methods that you can follow in order to reset all Windows Update components:

Resetting WU via the WU Agent

  1. Open your default browser, visit the Microsoft Technet download page and download the Reset Windows Update Agent script.
  2. Once the download is complete, go ahead and extract the zip archive with a utility like WinRar, WinZip, or 7Zip and paste it into an easy to access location.
  3. Next, double-click on the ResetWUENG.exe file and click Yes at the User Account Control prompt.
  4. Then, follow the instructions to run the script on your computer. At the end of this operation, the utility will reset all your WU components.
  5. After the operation is complete, restart your computer and see if you’re able to install the failing update once the next startup sequence is complete.

Resetting WU via elevated CMD

  1. Start by pressing Windows key + R to open up a Run dialog box. Then, type “cmd” inside the text box and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open up an elevated Command Prompt.
  2. At the UAC (User Account Control) prompt, click Yes to grant administrative privileges.
  3. Inside the elevated Command Prompt, type the following commands in order and press Enter after each command to stop all WU related services:
    • net stop wuauserv
    • net stop cryptSvc
    • net stop bits
    • net stop msiserver
  4. These commands will stop the Windows Update Services, MSI Installer, Cryptographic services, and BITS services.
  5. Once every relevant service is stopped, run the following commands to clear and rename SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2 folders:
    • ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
    • ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 Catroot2.old
  6. Renaming these folders with the commands above will force your OS to create new healthy equivalents that will not be affected by corruption.
  7. Now that the folders have been cleared, run the following commands to re-enable the services that we’re previously disabled:
    • net start wuauserv
    • net start cryptSvc
    • net start bits
    • net start msiserver
  8. Finally, restart your computer once again and see if the issue has been resolved at the next computer startup.

If the same 0X80070012 error is still occurring even after you have successfully refreshed every Windows Update component, move down to the next potential fix below.

Fix #6: Perform SFC and DISM Scans.

If refreshing every Windows Update component didn’t fix the issue, you should also consider that some kind of system file corruption is causing the 0X80070012 error when attempting to install a pending Windows Update.

If this scenario is applicable to your current situation, you should start by running a couple of scans with two built-in utilities – System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management(DISM).

SFC and DISM share some similarities, but our recommendation is to run both scans in quick succession in order to improve your chance of fixing the corrupted system files.

Start with a simple SFC scan. This tool is entirely local and will not require you to be actively connected to the internet. Once you initiate this procedure, it’s very important to not close the CMD window even if the utility looks like it froze. Wait patiently until the process is complete (interrupting the operation might cause logical errors on your HDD/SSD)

Once the SFC scan is completed successfully, reboot your computer and see if the issue is fixed once the next computer startup is complete.

After that, deploy a DISM scan and follow the on-screen prompts to complete the operation. DISM uses a sub-component of Windows Update to download healthy equivalents to replace corrupted system files. Due to this, you need to make sure that you have reliable Internet before initiating this operation.

Once the DISM scan has been completed successfully, restart your computer once again and see if the 0X80070012 error is now fixed. In case you’re still dealing with the same issue, move down to the next potential fix below.

Fix #7: Remove Problematic Registry Entries.

Registry Editor

If you suspect that there are registry entries that are damaged or corrupt, then remove them. Although this fix sounds complicated, it is relatively simple. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys to launch the Run utility.
  2. Type regedit into the text field to run the Registry Editor.
  3. Hit Enter.
  4. Navigate to the left pane and go to this location: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionWindowsUpdateAuto UpdateRequestedAppCategories.
  5. Expand this section and right-click on 8B24B027-1DEE-BABB-9A95-3517DFB9C552.
  6. Remove it.
  7. Restart your computer.

Take note that playing around with registry entries can be risky. One wrong move and you may end up causing more damage than good. So, before you even consider this fix, make sure you have a backup file in handy.

Fix #8: Set the Update Services to Automatic.

Sometimes, a poor services configuration can lead to this Windows update error. Thus, make sure it is set properly. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Launch the Command Prompt with administrator privilege by pressing the Windows + X keys.
  2. Select Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. Next, run the following commands one at a time. Press Enter after each one of them:
    • SC config wuauserv start= auto
    • SC config bits start= auto
    • SC config cryptsvc start= auto
    • SC config trustedinstaller start= auto
    • net stop wuauserv
  4. Restart your computer and launch the Command Prompt once again. Run this command: net start wuauserv.
  5. Navigate to Settings and select Update and Security.
  6. Click the Check for Updates button.

The Windows Update utility will then start scanning for any available updates. If it detects any, it will be installed automatically.

Fix #9: Download and Install the Update Manually.

If you cannot install the update because of the error 8024a112, you can resolve the problem by manually downloading the update from the official Microsoft Update Catalog. But for you to be able to do that, you have to know the update code of the Windows update you wish to download.

Usually, the update code begins with KB. It is then followed by a combination of numbers. After you find this code, download it by following these instructions:

  1. Go to the official Microsoft Update Catalog website.
  2. Type the update code into the search field.
  3. A list of all matching updates will show. Find the most relevant one that is compatible with your system architecture.
  4. Hit the Download button next to it.
  5. Next, run the setup file and follow the installation wizard.
  6. Restart your computer to fix the problem.

Fix #10: Use System Restore to Revert the Computer to a Healthy Point.

If this error started to occur after a Windows Update installation, you can revert your system to a healthy point before the botched installation occurred. To do this, you can use the System Restore tool.

System Restore points are created automatically by the system. They create snapshots amid a vital system event like third-party installations, security updates, as well as the latest Windows updates. Unless configurations are manually modified to alter the Windows Update behavior, there should be multiple Restore Points to select from.

If unable to boot normally, you must insert installation media that is fully compatible with the currently installed Windows 10 version.

  1. Press any key to boot from the installation media.
  2. On the initial installation screen, click Repair your computer to launch the Advanced Options menu.
  3. Now, select System Restore to open the utility.
  4. Once inside, check the box next to Show more restore points. Then, select the one created just before the issue was triggered. Click on the desired restore point and click Next to proceed.
  5. Click Finish and wait for the process to complete reverting your system to the selected restore point.
  6. Reboot the system and check if the issue persists.

Fix #11: Perform Clean or Repair Installation.

If you have tried all the provided solutions with no luck, the last resort will be to perform a Repair or Clean installation. This option should be considered last, especially if you are sure that the problem you are dealing with is severe and beyond control.

When performing a Repair / Clean installation, it is important that you backup your data. This is because it will refresh all system components to get rid of the underlying problem that causes the fatal error C0000034.

If you have compatible installation media, you can perform Repair Installation. This will allow you to keep personal files.

Repair Installation

  1. Insert the installation media and reboot the computer. Press any key during the boot process to load Windows from the installation media.
  2. Choose language and time zone, and then keyboard input methods before clicking Next.
  3. Click on Repair your computer, and then select System Image Recovery.
  4. Follow the prompts to complete the process.
  5. When done, restart and check if the issue has been solved.

Clean Installation

  1. Insert the installation media and reboot the system. Press any key to boot from the installation media.
  2. Note that even if the Windows 10/11 copy you have is different from the one installed, you can use it when performing Clean Installation. Alternatively, you can match the original installation details and use the previous key to activate your Clean installation.
  3. Once you reach the initial Windows Setup screen, click Install now.
  4. Follow the prompts to set up new disk partitions, etc.
  5. Depending on your PC specifications, this process can take from 30 minutes up to more than an hour.
  6. When done, restart the PC once more.

Final Thoughts

Windows Update errors are pretty common, especially if the update being installed is just new. If you wish to avoid these errors, you can always wait until a more stable version is rolled out. However, if you cannot wait to try what the latest update has to offer, do not hesitate to install it. Should you come across an error, don’t panic. Instead, find this article so you can get back on track.

If the basic troubleshooting methods don’t work, you can proceed with more advanced ones. You can begin with using the Windows Update Troubleshooter tool. If it doesn’t resolve the issue, use the SFC and DISM commands or reset the Windows Update service. Other solutions you can try include performing a clean install, downloading the Windows update manually, getting rid of trash and unwanted files, performing a virus scan, and disabling any active VPN connection.

However, if you cannot resolve the problem by yourself, ask assistance from experts who know the craft and are familiar with the Windows 10/11 environment.

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