by Dinesh Thakur

THE PROCESS OF UPDATING YOUR PC and applications is a relatively straightforward one, but that doesn’t mean that updates are always successful. In this article, we’ll help you troubleshoot some common update and patch issues.

Windows 7 Issues

When updating Windows, you may see an error message that indicates that Windows could not install an update. There are several possible reasons for this. If you haven’t updated in a while, there could be a series of previous updates that need to be installed and one update that was installed out-of-order from the rest. Try manually installing the problem update. Click Start, select All Programs, and click Windows Update. Select Check For Updates, and once the process finishes, click Install Updates and look for the one that was unable to install.
Another common issue arises when Windows won’t install because you have too little free space. Try using the Disk Cleanup tool to regain some space. Click Start, type disk cleanup and press ENTER. Next, choose the drive where your operating system is installed, click OK, and follow the on-screen instructions.

Failed Application Patches

One of the most common causes of a failed application update is a dropped or lost Internet connection. Unlike Windows updates (during which the operating system will remember where a download stopped), a dropped connection may prevent the application download from finishing. Check that your firewall is set to allow downloads, because it’s possible that the firewall is preventing the download.

Be sure that the download matches the version of the program you own. For example, an update for the 2007 edition of Microsoft Office won’t be a viable addition for those who own Microsoft Office 2010, and vice versa. If you continue to experience the error, report it to the software vendor and see if the company can help you.

Prevention

Large downloads can take time and increase the risk of a dropped connection during download. Regular checks for updates will help to decrease both the size of the files and the time they take to download, because you’ll be installing them more frequently.