Windows Update on Windows 7 just hangs

I have Windows 7 on a dell latitude laptop. I'm trying to run Windows Update on it, but it just hangs. The little green progress bar moves, but that's it.  I've used Disk Cleanup (when I was logged in Safe Mode), but it didn't have much to clean up (it is a new, clean windows 7 install).  Any suggestions?
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Zac HarrisSystems Administrator Commented:
If the progress bar is moving then something is happening....depending on how much there is to download and install it can take several hours for update to complete. If you have  slow internet connection and have several large updates to download this can be the case.

Disk cleanup would only help in this situation if you were running out of disk space to download and install the updates to. Since you said this is a new install I highly doubt that is the case. (unless you have the disk partitioned off or something.

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Sometimes i've seen the progress appear to not move but the updates were still happening.   You're should let it go for a couple hours to be sure (i've seen this take 2-3 hours).    Also if your internet bandwidth is low, this would also cause this process to drag on.    

On a fresh install of 7, there are quite a few updates for it.  

Also on a fresh install, i've rarely ever seen a real stop/lock up of Windows updating, but taking a long time seems normal.
And the amount of Updates for each for the last two months has been unusually large and could take several hours.  Just let it run for a morning or afternoon.

However if you have let the process run with no success then consider the following about fixing Windows Update which I wrote some years ago.

Did you check in Services that Windows Update service and Remote Procedure Call service are on?

Reset Windows Update

Windows Update Troubleshooter  or


Reinstall Windows Update Agent (different links for different Win 7 systems (32bit and 64bit))

Run the Windows Update Readiness tool:

Scan for viruses and other malware.

Run SFC /SCANNOW from a Command Prompt

Run a System Restore to a date before the problem started.

Run a Repair Install.  A Repair Install should not affect personal data or installed programs. but it never hurts to backup first. 

If you have an error code;en;3779&showpage=1
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MarkLoveExExAuthor Commented:
Just to be clear. The progress bar that is moving just cycles back on itself, so its really no help. I have a fast internet connection. I'll check back on the computer in a few hours and let you all know if it was just a matter of me needing to be more patient... I'll get back to you all. Thanks.
Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideCommented:
It is supposed to cycle like that.  I have found that it is better for the system to make a slipstreamed Windows install disk.  This includes all the windows updates up to a certain point in time (for me I downloaded the update a month or so ago).  When I install Windows 7 it still takes some time to update , but not nearly as long (The install we have at work generally needs between 100 and 200 updates, which can take up to a day to complete - depending on the system).  The slipstreamed install takes about an hour to update.  When I first made it it took just under 15 minutes.

To make a slipstreamed install you need the original windows disk (preferably not an OEM disk/license), the updates and some time and space.  I recommend NTLite or 7Customizer (&Customizer needs WAIK as well - linked to from the page I linked to).
Remember the Windows Updates repair solutions I offered earlier.

Don';t forget that the update process involves two steps--one is downloading the Update files and the other is installing them.  However I cannot remember if the progress bar recycles when going from downloading to installing.  That would only be one recycle anyway.
As mentioned above, on a fresh install of Windows 7 that is absolutely normal. Just searching for updates the first time takes very long, the time it takes doesn't matter whether you have a fast internet speed or not, but the speed of the PC can be an issue, older PC's will take longer (several hours) before they show the updates.

Once thing you should make sure of though is that SP1 is installed.

I suggest you just set it up for autoupdates, then leave it at least overnight.
is this a fresh install?
and did the updates work before? if yes, do a system restore to a date it was ok
MarkLoveExExAuthor Commented:
Thanks. It just took a long time to update, being a fresh install.  Mark
Glad to have helped.
Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideCommented:
Let us know if you need further help with AHK. is a great resource and the docs are on
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