Updating Windows 10 is not an optional tradition, it is an absolute necessity. Apart from getting feature updates that spruce up the operating system, there are other critical components that need to be updated such as virus definitions for Windows Defender. Other updates include the ones for your drivers and the other ones application programming interfaces like the .NET Framework.
As of now, many users understand the gravity of an outdated system and try as much as possible to always install the latest updates from Microsoft. Sometimes, however, they get into a fix: the Windows Update utility often produces errors signifying that the update process cannot continue. One of these error codes is the Windows Update Error 0xc1900223.
We believe this error brought you here. We will be showing you different solutions and workarounds that have helped other users like you get rid of it.
Why Does the Windows 10 Update Error 0xc1900223 Occur?
Microsoft’s description of the error reads:
“This indicates that there was a problem downloading and installing the selected update. Windows Update will try again later and there is nothing you need to do at this time.”
This explanation suggests that you need to drop the ball and come back later. However, that’s not always the case. Sometimes you keep seeing the error no matter how many breaks you give the utility. This goes to show that there are certain underlying causes that you need to fix.
These underlying issues include, Internet connection problems, malware, VPN, problems with Windows Update services and components, issues with your hosts file, corrupted Winsock, and problematic DNS cache, among others.
One after the other, we’ll be showing you guides on how to resolve these issues.
Make Sure You Have a Working Internet Connection
Sometimes, the real reason for the error message is a lack of Internet connection. You might think your computer’s Internet connection is good, but in reality, it isn’t. So, before you start with advanced troubleshooting, check if your Internet is working. Open up your browser and try loading a webpage.
If nothing works, you should consider restarting your router. Switch off your computer, then turn off the router’s power. After some minutes, turn your devices back on and check if your connection is back. If nothing still works, then you should contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP).
Disable Metered Connection
Normally, Windows 10 can use your data however it sees fit to download whatever updates are available. This is ideal for systems with unlimited data caps. However, if you use a metered connection, the operating system will cut back its data usage, only downloading critical updates automatically and allowing you to choose whether to download other updates, such as updates for Windows Store Apps, among others.
It’s possible that turning on the metered connection feature is causing the Windows Update Error 0xc1900223. Try disabling it and check if the update will run without problems. If you don’t know how to disable the metered connection feature, follow these steps:
- Launch the Settings app by clicking on the Start button and selecting the cogwheel icon above the power icon. You can also tap the Windows and I keys together.
- After the Settings app shows up, click on the Network & Internet icon.
- Once the Network & Internet page appears, go to the left side of the window and click on Wi-Fi.
- Next, head over to the Wi-Fi tab on the right side of the window and click on the “Manage known networks” link.
- Under “Manage known networks,” select your Wi-Fi network, and then click on the Properties button.
- Scroll down to the Metered Connection section and turn off the switch under “Set as metered connection” if it’s on.
- Now, try installing the updates.
Download Updates Over Metered Connections
If your current network isn’t set as a metered connection, try turning on the switch to check if downloading the update over a metered connection will solve the problem. This seems like an odd fix, but somehow, it worked for certain users.
Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter
You can use the troubleshooting tool dedicated to solve issues with the Windows Update utility. The tool will check for glitches affecting the updates, restart certain services and resolve conflicts. The steps below will walk you through the process:
- Click on the Start button and select the cogwheel icon above the power icon. If you want to launch the Settings app faster, go to your keyboard and tap the Windows and I keys together.
- Once the Settings app opens, click on the Update & Security icon.
- Go to the left pane of the Update & Security interface and click on Troubleshoot.
- Next, navigate to the right pane and click on Windows Update under Get Up and Running.
- Click on Run the Troubleshooter button that slides out under Windows Update.
- The tool will now check for issues and automatically resolve them.
- Once the process is complete, reboot your system and try performing the update.
Perform a Full Malware Scan
It’s possible that malware is the main culprit of the issue. Some malicious programs are designed to hijack your system’s network, which could go on to affect certain components of your operating system, including the Windows Update utility. It’s also possible that the malware program has tampered with some of the system files associated with Windows Update.
Running a full malware scan and removing any malicious program could resolve the problem. If you use a third-party antivirus, you can easily go to the program’s interface and run a full scan. Note that a full scan will check areas on your system that quick scans don’t. If you don’t know how to run a full scan, you can easily consult a guide on the support page of the program’s developer.
If you use the Windows Security suite as your main protection program, the following steps will show you what to do:
- Open the Settings application by right-clicking the Start button and selecting Settings from the Quick Access menu. You can also open Settings by tapping the Windows logo and I keys together.
- After the home screen of Settings shows up, go to the bottom of the page and click on Update & Security.
- When you get to the Update & Security interface, navigate to the left pane of the window and click on Windows Security.
- Now, go to the Windows Security tab to the right and click on Virus & Threat Protection under Protection Areas.
- Once you see the interface of the Virus & Threat Protection tool in the Windows Security app, click on Scan Options.
- On the Scan Options screen, go to the radio button for Full Scan and select it.
- Next, click on the Scan Now button.
- The full scan will take more than one hour to complete depending on your system’s speed.
- After the process is complete, allow the Virus & Threat Protection tool to kill off any malware program or file that it finds, then restart your system and check for the error.
You can also boost your system’s security by installing Auslogics Anti-Malware. The tool is the perfect malware remover. It works seamlessly with Windows 10 and doesn’t cause conflicts with other antivirus programs.
Disable Your VPN
If you use a VPN software, it could be interfering with Windows Updates’ connection to Microsoft’s servers and producing the error message as a result. Try turning off the VPN and check if that would resolve the problem. According to some users, this was the main cause of the error, and they got rid of it by disabling their VPN and removing any proxy they had set up.
Restart Windows Update services
There are certain services that are responsible for all the processes involved in downloading and installing updates on your computer. You might be getting the Error 0xc1900223 because these services aren’t working properly. One way to get them to work is restarting them. If you don’t know how to do that, the following steps will help:
- Right-click on the Start button and select Run from the Quick Access menu. You can also punch the Windows and R keys together to open the Run dialog box.
- After Run shows up, type “Services.msc” (no quotes) into the text field and hit the Enter key.
- After the Services application opens, locate the following services:
- Background Intelligence Transfer Service
- Cryptographic services
- Windows Update service
- Update Orchestrator service
- Right-click each service, click on Properties, and then click on the Stop button. After that, select Automatic in the Startup Type drop-down menu, and then click on OK.
- Now, try running the update.
All the input and output requests from web-based applications on your system are handled by the Winsock component. It’s a programming interface that resides in the System32 folder as a DLL file. The program is designed to relay information from an application and transport it to your networking program, such as the TCP/IP.
The Winsock component can be corrupt and halt the update process you’re trying to initiate. It’s one of the known causes of the issue. Try resetting it to resolve any problems it might have and check if that gets rid of the Windows Update error. The following steps will walk you through the process:
- Launch the Run dialog box. You can do this by right-clicking the Start button and selecting Run, by searching for Run in the Start menu, or by using the Windows + R keyboard combo.
- After Run shows up in bottom-left corner of your screen, type “CMD” (without the quotes), then hit the Ctrl, Shift, and Enter keys simultaneously.
- The User Account Control dialog window will now pop up and request for permission to run Command Prompt as an administrator. Click on the Yes button once this happens.
- Once the Command Prompt opens in administrator mode, type the following line into the black screen:
netsh winsock reset
- Windows will now reset the Winsock component by replacing the DLL file.
- Once the command executes successfully, restart your computer and try updating it.
Reset Your Hosts File
Your Hosts file is a text file that contains different network configurations. It is where the alphanumeric identifiers of hostnames are mapped to their corresponding IP addresses. This particular file is a critical component of any Windows computer’s network infrastructure. It’s possible that the error message is showing up because the Hosts file is corrupt or now contains wrong parameters.
To resolve the issue, try resetting the file to default. You have to be logged into an administrator account to be able to do this. The steps below will show you the process involved in applying this fix:
- Open a File Explorer window by right-clicking the Start button and selecting File Explorer.
- Click on This PC in the left pane of the window.
- Open your main drive. This is normally the Local Disk (C:).
- Once the drive opens, double-click on the Windows folder.
- Open the System32 folder after you get to the Windows folder, then double-click the Drivers folder.
- Now, open the Etc folder.
- Locate the Hosts file, right-click it, choose Rename from the context menu, then rename it to something else, “Hosts.old” (without the quotes), for example.
- Now, open the Start menu, search for Notepad, and launch the app.
- Once Notepad opens, paste the following into the new note:
# Copyright (c) 1993-2006 Microsoft Corp.
# This is a sample HOSTS file used by Microsoft TCP/IP for Windows.
# This file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. Each
# entry should be kept on an individual line. The IP address should
# be placed in the first column followed by the corresponding host name.
# The IP address and the host name should be separated by at least one
# Additionally, comments (such as these) may be inserted on individual
# lines or following the machine name denoted by a ‘#’ symbol.
# For example:
# 184.108.40.206 rhino.acme.com # source server
# 220.127.116.11 x.acme.com # x client host
# localhost name resolution is handle within DNS itself.
# 127.0.0.1 localhost
# ::1 localhost
- Now, click on File at the top of the window and select Save As from the drop-down or press the Ctrl, Shift and S keys simultaneously.
- Once the Save As dialog box opens, navigate to the C > Windows > System32 > Drivers > Etc path, type “hosts” (no quotes) in the File Name text box, and then click on the Save button.
- Click on Yes if the User Account Control dialog prompts for permission. If a dialog tells you that you don’t have permission to save in the folder, click on Yes to save in the Documents folder instead, then close Notepad and move the file from the Documents folder to the C > Windows > System32 > Drivers > Etc folder.
- You can now check for the problem.
Change Your DNS Resolver
If you’re using a DNS address that points to ad-blocking servers like Pi-Hole, this could be the cause of your problems. Consider changing your DNS resolver to Google’s or Cloudflare’s and check if that solves the problem. The steps below will show you what to do:
- Open the search function beside the Start button by clicking on the magnifying glass icon on the taskbar or by pressing Windows + S.
- Type “control panel” (no quotes) into the text field after the search utility appears.
- Once the Control Panel opens, click on Network and Internet.
- On the next screen, click on Network and Sharing Center.
- Once the Network and Sharing Center page opens, go to the left pane and click on Change Adapter Settings.
- Now, locate your current network device, right-click it, and then click on Properties.
- Go to the list under “This connection uses the following items,” right-click Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4), and then select Properties.
- Once the Properties dialog for Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) shows up, click on the radio button for “Use the following DNS server addresses.”
- Now, for Preferred DNS Server, enter 18.104.22.168 and for Alternate DNS Server, enter 22.214.171.124.
- Click on the OK button, then try performing the update.
Flush Your DNS and Renew/Release Your IP Address
Your DNS cache stores information that helps point a human-friendly Domain Name Server to its numeric IP address. The IP address is then used to request information from the relevant server. There are times when connection issues occur because the cache contains wrong parameters. This could be the reason for the Windows Update error you’re experiencing.
To resolve the problem here, you have to clear the entire cache through a process called flushing.
Another process that goes with flushing the DNS cache is releasing and renewing your IP address. Normally, your system is assigned an IP addresses by your router that it uses to access the internet. If the IP address becomes problematic, you need to get a new one. To do that, you first have to release the IP, then renew it.
Follow the steps below:
- Go to the taskbar and click on the magnifying glass icon to open the search utility beside the Start button. You can also tap the Windows and S keys together to summon the utility.
- Once the search bar opens, type “command prompt” (without the quotes) into the text box.
- After Command Prompt appears in the search results, right-click it and select Run as Administrator from the context menu.
- Click on the Yes button once the User Account Control dialog window appears.
- When you see the elevated Command Prompt window, type the following lines into the black screen and hit the Enter key after typing each line:
- Exit the Command Prompt and try updating your system.
Reset the Windows Update Components
If nothing has worked till this point, then you should reset all the components related to Windows Update. The process might seem like quite a lot, but it can be worth it in the end. Make sure you follow all the steps in the guide below carefully.
- Launch the Run dialog box by right-clicking the Start button and selecting Run or by using the Windows + R keyboard combo.
- After Run shows up type “CMD” (without the quotes), then hit the Ctrl, Shift, and Enter keys simultaneously.
- The User Account Control dialog window will now pop up and request for permission. Click on the Yes button.
- Once the Command Prompt window opens in administrator mode, type the following lines into the black screen and hit the Enter key after typing each:
net stop bits
net stop wuauserv
net stop appidsvc
net stop cryptsvc
- Now that you’ve stopped the Windows Update services, go to the next line in the Command Prompt and enter the line below to delete the qmgr*.dat files:
Del “%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Downloader\qmgr*.dat”
Hit the Enter key.
- Next, use the command lines below to rename the SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2 folders. Make sure you hit the Enter key after typing each line:
Ren %systemroot%\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.bak
Ren %systemroot%\system32\catroot2 catroot2.bak
- The next step involves resetting the Background Intelligent Transfer Service and Windows Update service to their default security descriptors. Type or copy and paste the command lines below and hit the Enter key after each:
sc.exe sdset bits D:(A;;CCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRRC;;;SY)(A;;CCDCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRSDRCWDWO;;;BA)(A;;CCLCSWLOCRRC;;;AU)(A;;CCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRRC;;;PU)
sc.exe sdset wuauserv D:(A;;CCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRRC;;;SY)(A;;CCDCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRSDRCWDWO;;;BA)(A;;CCLCSWLOCRRC;;;AU)(A;;CCLCSWRPWPDTLOCRRC;;;PU)
- Type the following into Command Prompt and hit Enter to go to the System32 folder:
cd /d %windir%\system32
- You’ll now be registering all the Background Intelligent Transfer Service components. To do this, type the lines below into the command prompt and make sure you hit the Enter key after typing each line. They’re quite many, so take your time and get it right:
- The next step involves deleting some unnecessary registry entries. Before you continue, you must note that editing the registry is a sensitive undertaking and you must follow the steps below carefully. To be on the safe side, back up your registry before applying this fix. Now, follow these steps to remove the unneeded registry keys:
- Use the Windows + R keyboard combo to launch Run.
- After Run shows up in the bottom-left corner of your screen, type “regedit” (without the quotes), then hit the Enter key.
- The User Account Control dialog window will now pop up and request for permission. Click on the Yes button.
- Once the Registry Editor opens, go to the left pane and drill down to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\COMPONENTS.
- Under COMPONENTS, check if the following keys are present and delete them:
- Lastly, go to the administrator Command Prompt and enter the following lines one after the other to restart the services you stopped earlier:
net start bits
net start wuauserv
net start appidsvc
net start cryptsvc
- Reboot your PC and try updating your system.
The Windows Update utility should no longer produce the Error 0xc1900223. You can use the comments section below to let us know how you resolved the problem.