Windows Update won't work after upgrade from XP Home to XP Professional

Posted on 2007-07-20
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-08-13
I have a Gateway Desktop 700 series that is about 6 years old.
The system has two physical hard drives.
Drive C is about 114GB
Drive F is about 130GB
Drives D and E are cd and dvd drives.

This installation of XP Home has %SystemRoot% pointing to C:\Winnt instead of the C:\Windows folder.

I had been putting off upgrading the XP Professional because this system, for all intents and purposes...this system sucks and if I wasn't such a cheap bastard, I should probably just go out and buy a new computer for myself.  And if my wife wasn't so attached to her applications (which can't be replaced because they were "borrowed" from another person.), I would recommend reformatting the entire drive and installing XP Professional from scratch.  But as far as users go...my wife is the most demanding and least forgiving.

After performing the upgrade install to XP Professional, Windows Update wouldn't work.  The attempts to update to Windows Installer 3.1 and Genuine Advantage are unsuccessful.

To attempt and correct this problem on my own, I performed the following steps.

1. Create a folder called "C:\TMPDOWNLOAD"
2. Download WindowsUpdateAgent30-x86.exe to "C:\TMPDOWNLOAD"
3. Download WindowsXP-KB927891-v3-x86-ENU.exe to "C:\TMPDOWNLOAD"
4. Reboot into Safe Mode
5. Delete the SoftwareDistribution folder from C:\Winnt (would be C:\Windows in other computers).
6. Reboot Normally
7. Start/Run "C:\TMPDOWNLOAD\WindowsUpdateAgent30-x86.exe /wuforce
8. Reboot Normally
9. Start/Run "C:\TMPDOWNLOAD\WindowsXP-KB927891-v3-x86-ENU.exe
At this point, the installation fails and exits pointing to some stupid log file which says absolutely nothing relevant.  If this file would succeed, then I would be able to go on to the last step, which is installing the Installer 3.1 from the Microsoft Update site.  But everytime I do the windows upate, the installer and genuine advantage fail to install.

You know the saying that the definition of insanity is to keep trying the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result...well...I'm insane.

Other things I did in between attempts to duplicate the process.... I uninstalled the Macafee 8.5i corporate edition Antivirus software...no effect.

Other weirdness....after doing the upgrade install, the audio drivers somehow got yellow exclamation points, and I had to remove and reinstall the drivers for the sound to work again....Now the sound works fine.

Updated Java to the latest 6.2

Systems is still running IE6 (upgrading to 7 was going to be part of the system updates...which of course won't work!)

Question by:MtnNtwks
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LVL 32

Accepted Solution

r-k earned 750 total points
ID: 19536399
Here are some things you can try:

(1) Check both the date and time on your system. If they are off by more than a few minutes, updates will sometimes fail to install.
(2) Examine the file C:\WINDOWS\SoftwareDistribution\ReportingEvents.log (with Notepad) to see if there is an explanation of why the update failed.
(3) Make sure you are logged in with Administrator privileges. Most security updates require it.
(4) Work through the troubleshooting tips at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/906602.
(5) Also see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/883821.

Can you post the exact error you get when you try the update (i.e. the part where "...installation fails and exits pointing to some stupid log file which says absolutely nothing..")

Author Comment

ID: 19536432
Thank you for your reply.

It's not the time
It's not the admin rights issue
I'm not a noob :-)

I'll paste the log output later...just wanted to reply back and let you know I read the response and will follow up later...
LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 19536478
OK, thanks. Did not mean to imply the noob part, never thought that just from the details you already provided, it's just that sometimes a small detail can ring a bell.

Do look at the ReportingEvents.log file as well for any hint.
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LVL 66

Assisted Solution

johnb6767 earned 750 total points
ID: 19536966
Automatic Updates stops working after a repair install of Windows XP

See if this can help...

Additionally, see the next link for several batch files to create to fully repair/remove/reinstall WU.....


Author Comment

ID: 19539529
1.  Rebooted into safe mode
2.  Created .bat file from Q_22667251
3.  Ran bat file
4.  Rebooted into Normal Mode
5.  Went to Windows Update Site
6.  Stuck until the second coming of Jesus looking at...
Checking if your computer has the latest version of Windows updating software for use with the website&

The website uses ActiveX controls to determine which version of the software your computer is running. If you see an ActiveX warning, make sure the control is digitally signed by Microsoft before installing it or allowing it to run.

No cute, green little status thingie....nothing.  Just text and a white screen.

This is now a dead link:
Page Cannot be Displayed.

One last thing to understand.  This is NOT a REPAIR install. This was an UPGRADE install from XP Home to XP Professional.

The ReportingEvents.log file has nothing in it...no data.

But here's the funny part.  This time when I went to run the KB927891, it completed without any errors.


Author Comment

ID: 19541355

I was able to successfully download and apply the "automatic" updates.  You know...the little gold shieldt that says "udates are ready."  But I still can't get the actual windows updates page to work.

Author Comment

ID: 19541483
I tried to download and reapply service pack 2.  It went as far as starting the install, then threw an "Access Denied" denied when it was "updating registry."  So I tried to install XP SP2 in safe mode.  Same error.  

I think I'm ready to just call this whole thing "f*d" and restore to the ghost image I took before the upgrade.

If nobody has any other ideas, I will restore the ghost image and close this question.
LVL 66

Expert Comment

ID: 19541624
Since you havea  valid backup, I would roll with that....

Author Comment

ID: 19542943
Already done.  In this case, I don't think its fair to close the question and have my points refunded because both r-k and john did provide solutions that have worked for others in the past, and almost resolved the problem on my system.  So I'll divide with a grade of B for each.
LVL 66

Expert Comment

ID: 19542991
I appreciate the thought for that. I wish we could have been a bit more helpful in the troubleshooting.

Have a great day!
LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 19542998
Thanks. Sorry it could not be fixed simply. Usually the upgrade goes well but every now and then I've seen it mess something up.

Expert Comment

ID: 20026906
I had this problem today with upgrade to xp pro from home, tried all the things above, no luck. called microsoft and was able to get free tech support on this. the support tech used their remote software to take control of the system and uploaded a batch file which re-registered several systems dll's. we then proceeded to download and install 92 updates for xp pro & office 2003. I can email the file if still needed.

steve - the pc manager

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