GuidesError FixesHow To Fix Windows Error 80072EFE?

How To Fix Windows Error 80072EFE?

Reset Windows Update components, run Windows Update and Network Adapter troubleshooters and kill malware or virus to remove the error.

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Error 80072EFE relates to the miscommunication between your computer and the Windows Update servers, particularly due to connectivity hurdles, hindrances from Windows Firewall or third-party antivirus apps, corrupt Windows components and cache, and wrong time and date settings on your PC. We could not perform OS updates on our Windows when this error happened. 

Error 80072EFE

The error message appears as follows:

Error Message: Windows could not search for new updates. An error occurred while checking for new updates for your computer. Error(s) found: Code 80072EFE.
Key Takeaways
  • Your computer cannot install the Windows updates when the error 80072EFE is present.
  • It may appear due to bad internet, faulty Windows components, incorrect system configurations, and more.
  • Resolve the error by using Windows update patches, installing Windows Update Client, and restarting Windows Update service.

We advise you to start with the most basic troubleshooting methods that usually solve computer errors.

  1. Power cycling the PC.
  2. Ensuring stable internet speed.
  3. Power cycling the internet router.

Use Windows Update Troubleshooter

Windows troubleshooters come in handy when you want to identify and resolve problems within your computer. Windows Update and Network Adapters are two tools we used to identify the cause behind this update error. Once identified, the troubleshooters will fix the problem or prompt you to resolve it.

Here are the quick steps to use built-in troubleshooters:

  1. Go to Settings > Update And Security > Highlight Troubleshoot on the left
  2. Press Additional Troubleshooters > Windows Update > Run The Troubleshooter.
  3. Wait for it to diagnose related issues and solve them.
  4. Repeat the same steps for the Network Adapter troubleshooter.
    Network Adapter Troubleshooter In Windows
    Network Adapter Troubleshooter (Image By Tech4Gamers)

Use Update Patches (Windows 7 Only)

Download the KB3138612, KB4474419, and KB4490628 Update Patches from Microsoft Update Catalog. Open each file once downloaded, and it will automatically install the latest updates on your system. Restart the computer to put the updates into function. 

Perform SFC And DISM Scans

SFC and DISM scans are useful in identifying potential troubles with the system and Windows-related files. In the Command Prompt, enter the codes mentioned below one after another:

sfc/scannow
dism/online/cleanup-image /checkhealth 
dism/online/cleanup-image /scanhealth
dism/online/cleanup-image /restorehealth

Download Windows Update Client

While testing the fixes, we found that installing the new Windows Update Client for Windows 7 works. So, we downloaded it and restarted the computer, and the error disappeared immediately for us and this user in the Microsoft Community.

Scan For Malware And Virus

We also ran a scan using the Microsoft Offline Defender tool to hunt for malware and viruses in our system. The presence of these can also lead to this error.

 Important: Regularly scan your PC using an Antivirus to prevent viruses from ruining your experience.  

Turn Off Third-Party Antivirus And Other Software

Uninstall any third-party software you recently downloaded, after which you have faced the error. See if that fixes the trouble on your side.

Other than this, we disabled the third-party antivirus on our computer, like Avast or McAfee, because they may be blocking access to different Windows services.

Restart Windows Update Service

We also tried restarting the Windows Update service that regulates the automatic downloading of Windows updates using the internet. Doing so cleared the bugs and temporary glitches that may have stopped the computer from installing the updates, consequently eliminating the error.

Carefully follow the method to avoid a malfunction:

  1. Open the Run  > Search for services.msc.
  2. Find Windows Update Service > Right-click it > Properties.
  3. Keep the Startup Type as Automatic.
    Select Automatic Startup Type
    Automatic Startup (Image By Tech4Gamers)
  4. Come back and highlight the service > Hit Restart in the top left corner.
    Restart Windows Update In Windows
    Restart Windows Update (Image By Tech4Gamers)
  5. Follow the same method for Background Intelligent Transfer Service.
  6. Once done, head to This PC> Local Disk C > Windows > Boot.
  7. Click on SoftwareDistribution folder > Select all the sub-folders > Delete them > Restart PC.

Reset Windows Update Components

We found that corrupt Windows Update components were a major hindrance to the OS update process on our PC since they aid the update process. Therefore, we reset the component configurations to eliminate unwanted cache and glitches, which worked like a charm.

Ensure you enter the right codes as instructed in the following steps:

  1. In the Command Prompt, enter these codes one by one:
    net stop bits
    net stop wuaserv
    net stop appidevsc
    net stop cryptsvc
  2. Execute the code
    netsh winsock reset
  3. Next, rename the Software Distribution folder using the command,
    ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
  4. Resume the services
    net start bits
    net start wuaserv
    net start appidevsc
    net start cryptsvc

Install Windows 7 Updater

While searching for the fixes, we came across the Windows 7 updater. Hence, we installed and ran the program. Through the software, we could effectively install the latest updates. Besides, it was also effective for many other people, as noted in the comments of a YouTube video.

Erase CatRoot2 Folder

Another solution we applied was to delete the CatRoot2 folder. It is a known fix for troubleshooting Windows update errors because the Catroot2 folder contains signatures and files essential for the update.

WARNING: Proceed with this step once you have used the fixes mentioned above because deleting this folder can put your system’s security at risk.

Delete the CatRoot2 folder with this method:

  1. Launch the Run box > Type services.msc.
  2. Highlight Cryptographic Services > Click Stop The Service > Exit the window.
    Stop Cryptographic Service In Windows
    Stop Cryptographic Service (Image By Tech4Gamers)
  3. Go to This PC > Local Disk C or the relevant disk where Windows files are stored.
  4. Choose Windows > System32 > Right-click on Catroot2 > Delete it.
  5. Start the Cryptographic Service.

Upgrade Windows (Windows 7 Only)

If you are a Windows 7 user facing this error code, we recommend upgrading your Windows version to 10 or 11 to continue using your PC without errors. Microsoft has halted updates for Windows 7; therefore, there is a greater chance of such errors arising in the future. On the other hand, you can refer to the Microsoft Support team and request their assistance on the error 80072EFE.

WARNING: Make sure to do your research before upgrading Windows, as plenty of users have complained about issues with Windows 11.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Error Code 80072EFE?

The error may prevent your computer from downloading and installing the latest Windows updates.

Why Do I See This Error On My Computer?

Unstable internet connection, corrupt Windows services, and inaccurate date/time are some reasons why this error may occur.

How Do I Resolve The Error?

Try resetting Windows components, restarting essential services, and scanning for malware or viruses to fix the error.


More Windows Errors:

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