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How to troubleshoot “iTunes is waiting for Windows Update…” in Windows 10?

By Emmanuel Seriki | June 5, 2020 |

greater than 12 minutes

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You probably saw the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update to install the driver for this iPhone message after you connected your mobile device to your PC. The notification makes sense (with the information it is trying to pass across), but the events that triggered the error are not set in stone.

Well, iTunes is supposedly waiting for Windows Update to finish its job, which means iTunes will get back to work once Windows Update is done with everything. Therefore, in theory, all you need to do is perform Windows Update tasks and all will be well.

Well, if you want your iPhone to enjoy seamless operation with your computer, then you must do these things (or take these tips into account):

  • Use the Apple cable or a cable from a certified manufacturer to connect your iPhone to your PC.
  • Check the cable you use thoroughly for signs of damage. If you notice that the cable is broken, then you must replace it.
  • Configure your iPhone to trust your computer. The prompt for this move is supposed to come up automatically.
  • Keep your iPhone unlocked and in view at all times. Your PC might struggle to recognize your iPhone when it is locked.

Unfortunately, things are rarely ever so easy with iTunes and Windows Update. You are probably here to learn how to remove the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update warning. We will now proceed to the main part of this guide. There, we will describe the most effective solutions to the problem in view.

How to fix the “iTunes is waiting for Windows Update to install the driver for this iPhone” error on a Windows 10 PC

For efficiency purposes, we advise that you go through the fixes in the order they appear below. If a procedure fails to do enough to resolve the problem in your case, then you must move to the next one and simply continue reading.

  1. Update Windows:

Well, since iTunes is telling you that it cannot proceed with its work because Windows Update is holding it back, then it makes sense for you to update Windows (as the first thing). We are not expecting much here. The proposed procedure might not even be the ideal fix to the problem, but we advise that you get on with it now.

In the best-case scenario, your computer ends up with patches and fixes to the bugs or inconsistencies that are responsible for iTunes struggles or malfunctions. Before you update Windows, we advise that you disconnect your iPhone from your PC.

Follow these instructions to update Windows:

  • Open the Settings application by pressing (and holding down) the Windows button on your PC’s keyboard and then tapping the letter I key.
  • Assuming the Settings window is now on your screen, you have to click on Update and Security (one of the main menu options).

You will be directed to the Windows Update screen (on the right pane area of the window).

  • Click on the Check for updates button.

Your machine will now use your internet connection to get in touch with Microsoft servers to see if anything new has been released for your PC or system configuration.

If the Check for updates button is missing, then you will probably see the Install updates button, which you have to click on to proceed.

In any case, Windows will perform the relevant Windows Update tasks (downloading and installation of updates). If the updates are numerous, then your computer might end up having to reboot itself a couple of times to install all of them.

  • After everything involving Windows updates gets done, you have to restart your PC (as the final move to finish things).

With the recommended reboot out of the way, you can now connect your iPhone to your PC, run iTunes, and then try to perform the task you struggled with earlier (due to the error that came up) to see what happens this time.

  1. Update iTunes:

If the iTunes app continues to bring up the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update to install the driver for this iPhone error – even after you installed all the relevant Windows updates – then you have to fetch and install updates for iTunes itself. Perhaps, the iTunes application is acting up because it lacks certain bug fixes and patches, which should exist in a newer build.

You need your computer to run the latest iTunes version (to ensure the best outcomes), so we will walk you through the automatic update process for the iTunes application. The update path is dependent on the type of iTunes application on your computer.

If you use the iTunes desktop application (legacy program), then these are the instructions you must follow to update iTunes:

  • Press the Windows button on your machine’s keyboard (or click on the Windows icon in the bottom-left corner of your PC’s screen).

You should be on the Windows Start screen now.

  • Type Apple Software Update into the text box (that appears the moment you begin to type) to run a search task there using those keywords as the query.
  • Once Apple Software Update (App) emerges as the main entry on the results list, you have to click on it to open that program.

The Apple Software Update application window will be displayed now. The utility will automatically go online to search for updates to iTunes and other Apple applications on your computer.

  • Assuming iTunes is listed as one of the items under the Updates menu, you have to click on the Install button (around the bottom-right corner of the window).

Ideally, you should install all the updates that Apple Software Update finds for all the Apple applications on your computer. After everything gets done, you will get a prompt to restart your computer.

  • Click on the Restart button.

If you use the iTunes app from the Windows Store, then these are the instructions you must follow to update iTunes:

  • Press the Windows button on your machine’s keyboard (or click on the Windows icon in the bottom-left corner of your PC’s screen).

You should be on the Windows Start screen now.

  • Click on the Windows Store icon to open this application.
  • Assuming the Store window is now on your screen, you have to click on the menu icon (formed from three dots arranged horizontally) in the top-right corner of the window.
  • From the list of options that pop up, you must click on Downloads and Updates.
  • Assuming you are now on the Downloads and Updates screen in the Store application, you have to click on the Get updates button (around the top-right corner of the window).
  • Now, you must wait while Windows connects to the necessary servers to find out what’s available.
  • Locate iTunes from the list of applications and then click on the Download icon beside it.

Your computer is now supposed to fetch and install updates for iTunes.

  • Once the update process reaches completion, you have to close the Windows Store application.
  • Restart your PC.

Regardless of the iTunes app running on your computer (and the way you went about fetching and installing updates for it), after the recommended reboot, you have to open iTunes and work with it. Confirm that you can now connect your iPhone to your PC without complications or issues arising.

  1. Reinstall the troubled driver:

We know that the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update error is a prelude to the iPhone driving not working problem on your computer. Therefore, it makes sense for you to subvert the effect of the warning by resolving the main issue. The iPhone driver is probably broken or corrupted, so the reinstallation procedure is likely to do enough to make things right.

By reinstalling the iPhone driver, you get to force through shakeups in the driver code, settings, and setup to eliminate irregularities that are responsible for it being in a poor state. Basically, you have to remove the iPhone driver and then bring it back.

Well, these instructions cover everything (on uninstalling and then installing the iPhone driver) that you need to do here:

  • Press the Windows button on your machine’s keyboard (or click on the Windows icon in the bottom-left corner of your PC’s screen).

You should be on the Windows Start screen now.

  • Type Device Manager into the text box (that appears the moment you begin to type) to run a search task using those inputted keywords as the query.
  • Once Device Manager (App) emerges as the primary entry on the results list returned, you have to click on it to open this application.
  • Assuming you are now on the Device Manager, you have to go through the driver categories (housing similar or related drivers) carefully.
  • Locate Portable Devices and then click on the expansion icon next to it to see the contents of this category.
  • Assuming Apple iPhone is now visible, you have to right-click on this device to see the available context menu.
  • Select Uninstall device.

Windows will now act to get rid of the Apple iPhone device. Apple iPhone is supposed to disappear from the list underneath the Portable Devices category.

  • Once the driver gets removed, you have to close the Device Manager window and then restart your PC.

After Windows comes up and reaches stability, it is likely to realize that an important driver for a device is missing. It will then act to find and install the necessary software. You will do well to open Device Manager (go through the steps we described above) and then check the items under the Portable Devices category to see if the Apple iPhone device has reappeared (as it is supposed to).

If the expected processes do not play out – if the Apple iPhone device fails to show up automatically (for any reason), then you have to continue with these steps:

  • First, you have to connect your iPhone to your computer.

Windows is supposed to detect its presence automatically. Your system might act to install the needed software automatically. If that happens, then you have to open the Device Manager app to see if the Apple iPhone device has reappeared.

Note: You do not have to continue with the steps below once you confirm that the Apple iPhone driver is back to its rightful place.

  • If iTunes opens on its own, then you have to close it.

You might also want to open the Task Manager app to check and confirm that no iTunes component is active. If you find anything related to iTunes there, you have to put it down (using the End task function).

  • At this point, you have to open the File Explorer app. The Windows logo button + letter E keyboard shortcut will find some use here.
  • Once the File Explorer window comes up, you have to copy and then paste the following code into the address bar at the top of the window:

%ProgramFiles%\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\Drivers

  • Click on the OK button (or tap the Enter button on your PC’s keyboard).

You will be directed to the Drivers folder housing packages or files for Apple devices.

  • In your current location, you must locate the inf file and then right-click on it to see the available options.

If your PC is running the 32-bit iTunes application, then you will probably see the usbaapl.inf file instead. And yes, that file is the one you must right-click on to see the available context menu.

Note: You are likely to find several files with the usbappl name in the Drivers directory. To avoid confusion (and identify the right file), you will do well to right-click on a file and then select Properties. This way, you get to view the Properties window for the file to know whether it has the INF extension.

  • From the list that comes up, you must select Install.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to perform the installation task – if this step applies.
  • Now, you must close all the program windows and then disconnect your iPhone from your computer.
  • Restart your PC.
  • Connect your iPhone to your computer. Things should go smoothly now.
  1. Update your iPhone driver:

If the reinstallation operation for the iPhone driver failed to do enough to resolve the issues affecting the driver, then you have to install a new driver version. Similarly, by installing a new driver, you get to force through changes (more serious than the ones from the reinstallation operation). The new driver will introduce fresh code, settings, and so on.

First, we want you to try the automatic update function in Windows and use it to fetch and install a new driver for the Apple iPhone device. Compared to the manual method of updating drivers, the processes that define the automatic procedure are relatively straightforward and easy to carry out.

Follow these instructions to update the iPhone driver:

  • First, you have to open the Device Manager application. You can do this through the procedure we described in the previous fix.
  • This time too, after the Device Manager window comes up, you have to locate the Portable Devices category and then click on its expansion icon.
  • Assuming the contents of the relevant category are now visible, you have to right-click on Apple iPhone to see the available context menu.
  • Choose Update driver.

Windows is now supposed to bring up a small dialog or window asking you how you want to go about the driver search process.

  • Select Search automatically for updated driver software.

Windows will now initiate the update procedure by searching online for new driver versions released for the Apple iPhone device on your computer.

  • If Windows finds something, then you have to click on the Download or Install button (depending on which button shows up first).

If Windows finds nothing, then you have to click on the Close button on the prompt. You must then skip the remaining steps below.

  • Perform the relevant tasks or simply allow your computer to install the new driver.
  • Close the Device Manager window and terminate other active applications.
  • Restart your computer.

Well, the reboot operation is the only thing that ensures that Windows takes the changes resulting from the driver installation into account.

  • Now, you must connect your iPhone to your computer to test things.
  • Open iTunes (if necessary) to verify that the application now functions normally (without the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update error coming up to inform you there is a problem).

If you could not install a new driver for the iPhone device because Windows failed to find driver updates – or if the issue defined by the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update error persists – then you have to consider another method of updating the driver. For the path ahead, you will need a program to assist you with everything. Get Auslogics Driver Updater.

Once you run the recommended application, it will initiate a top-level or deep scan to identify the broken or malfunctioning drivers (old, outdated, and corrupted drivers) and also gather some information on them. After the identification phase, the app will go online to search for updates and then download and install the newest manufacturer-recommended drivers (as replacements for the bad drivers).

Invariably, in a short period, your computer will end up with functional drivers for almost all its devices (and not just the iPhone device). More importantly, you will not have to deal with the monotonous and complicated tasks that are associated with the manual driver update process for such a large number of devices.

Assuming your computer has finished installing updates for all the drivers, you have to close all the open programs and then restart your PC to finish your work. After Windows boots up and settles down, you have to plug your iPhone into your PC (as you have done several times) to see how things work out. You might also have to open the iTunes application to confirm that the issues that trigger the troublesome notification are no longer in play.

Other things you can try to resolve the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update issue on a Windows 10 computer

If you are still struggling with the iTunes is waiting for Windows Update error – which means you are yet to find a way to use iTunes with your mobile device – then you have to try the fixes and workarounds on our final list. One of them might succeed where the previous solutions failed.

  1. Restart the Apple Mobile Device service:

The Apple Mobile Device service is probably the service that manages operations or tasks involving the iPhone device and your computer. Therefore, there is a good chance the issues you are struggling with might stop manifesting themselves after you restart this service to force through shakeups in its operations.

You will have to open the Services application, go through the list of services on the program window, locate Apple Mobile Device, and then double-click on this service. You will then have to do some work on the Properties window to restart the service, save the changes (if this step applies), and then restart your PC to finish things.

  1. Repair iTunes:

First, you have to log into your PC using an administrator account or profile. You have to fire up your preferred browser, head to Apple’s site, and then search for and download the iTunes installer designed and released for your computer or system configuration. You will then have to run the downloaded package as an administrator.

The installer is supposed to prompt you to repair iTunes automatically – since the application is already installed. Follow the on-screen directions (as they show up). After the repair, you will have to close all the applications active on your computer and then restart your PC.

  1. Disable conflicting or problem-causing applications:

Some applications – especially those with processes that operate in the background – are known to come into conflict with iTunes, while other apps simply disrupt or interrupt iTunes’ operations. You have to find both categories of applications and disable them (temporarily) or uninstall them (permanently).

Here, you will have to open the Task Manager app, go through the processes and executables there carefully, and then use the End task function to put down the bad applications. To remove the bad apps, you must find your way to the Uninstall or Change a program screen in Control Panel and then initiate the uninstallation tasks from the provided platform.

  1. Disable or uninstall your antivirus or antimalware application; Disable your firewall and similar security setups or utilities.
  2. Disable (or uninstall) your VPN application; Stop using proxies and similar internet setups.
  3. Uninstall iTunes cleanly and then install the latest version of iTunes.
Fed up with your slow PC? Tired of waiting for Windows to start up? Take a look at the most common reasons behind poor performance and the best ways to deal with them here.

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