WSUS: The Update Could Not Be Found

I was re-installing the WSUS role on our security server (W2008 R2) today and hit this error as soon as the installation started:

“The update could not be found”.

It’s a bit of a weird one for a role installation.  I hadn’t the foggiest so I did a quick search and found the solution:

  • Delete the “WindowsUpdate” key from the registry at HKLMSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindows.  I’d recommend you export this to a .reg file to be safe.
  • Restart the Windows Update service.

Now you can go ahead and install WSUS.

The problem and fix applies to previous versions of Windows.  The issue is that the installer is checking Windows Updates but it has found a circular reference.  You’ve uninstalled WSUS from the server and it is configured to update from itself.  How can it?  Make sure you do the install before GPO applies those settings again during an automatic refresh.

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27 Comments on WSUS: The Update Could Not Be Found

  1. What if the below doesn’t exist and you still get the same error ?

    Delete “WindowsUpdate” key from the registry at HKLMSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindows

  2. worked perfect! thanks! (Win 2008R2)

  3. This is an old post but thank you for posting this!

  4. Thanks, worked fine!

  5. I look for solution whole day – it is work – I forget that I am have internal policy for own wsus which is down 🙂
    super thanks

  6. Thank you! worked perfect!

  7. Mohamed AbouHaggar // February 18, 2015 at 9:32 AM // Reply

    When the role tries to install it will try to update the server with required patches before adding the WSUS role.

    In some cases the role was previously on the server, removed for a reason, and now it needs to be re installed.

    If the server is pointing to itself as a WSUS server due to a GP from the domian, move the computer account to a OU with inheritance of GPs blocked.

    run gpupdate /force on the server.

    Then it should install.

    This is the reason you cannot find the key.

  8. stone george // April 4, 2015 at 6:41 PM // Reply

    Thanks this hack saved me…..cheers

  9. thanks it worked for me

  10. Thanks ! Nice finding

  11. thanx , it’s working

  12. Many Many Thanks , it worked successfully

  13. Worked for me – thanks!!!! Greetings from Holland

  14. anonymous // May 30, 2015 at 3:27 PM // Reply

    Thanks for taking the time to write this! Fixed it for me.

  15. Jon Ruehle // July 8, 2015 at 8:42 PM // Reply

    This worked for me!!! Thanks so much!

  16. Thanks this worked great.

  17. Cheers, that worked like a charm!

  18. This was not working for me until I stopped the Windows Update service. Re tried adding the roll and it worked!

  19. Thankyou! thankyou! thankyou!

  20. Genial!!!
    It Works!
    Thank U, very much

  21. I’m not going to say you’re my favourite person in the world, but you’re up there. Top 6.

  22. Thank’s works fine!

  23. Windows 2008 SBS – worked a treat. Kudos and thanks.

  24. John Mallard // May 16, 2017 at 5:30 PM // Reply

    That may be an old post, but it has just done the job for me in 2017 !!
    Thank you, Sir!

  25. Perfectly worked for me!

  26. Thanks!

  27. Thank you Sir. I know this is an old post but it helped me out today.

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