Are you having trouble updating your Windows operating system? You may have encountered error code 646. This error code is a common issue that many Windows users face when trying to update their system. It can be frustrating and confusing to deal with, but understanding its causes and potential solutions can help you resolve the problem. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about Windows update error code 646, including its causes, symptoms, and how to troubleshoot and fix it. Whether you’re a seasoned tech-savvy user or a beginner, keep reading to learn all about this frustrating error and how to overcome it.
Table of Contents
[FIX] Windows Update Error Code 646
If you’re a Windows user, you’ve probably encountered a Windows Update error at some point. One common error code that users may encounter is error code 646. This error code appears when Windows is unable to install certain updates and can lead to frustration and a delay in receiving important updates.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss what error code 646 means and how you can fix it.
What is Error Code 646?
Error code 646 usually appears when there is a problem with installing updates through Windows Update. A common cause of this error is a conflict with other software installed on your computer or a corrupt system file.
How to Fix Error Code 646?
There are a few methods you can try to fix error code 646. Follow the steps below to get your updates installed successfully.
Method 1: Run Windows Update Troubleshooter
The first step in fixing this error is to run the Windows Update Troubleshooter. This tool is designed to automatically detect and fix common issues with Windows Update. To run the troubleshooter, follow these steps:
1. Press the Windows key + I to open the Settings menu.
2. Click on “Update & Security” and then select “Troubleshoot” from the left-hand navigation menu.
3. Scroll down and click on “Windows Update”.
4. Click on “Run the troubleshooter” and follow the on-screen instructions.
Once the troubleshooter has finished detecting and fixing any issues, restart your computer and try to install the updates again.
Method 2: Disable Antivirus/Firewall temporarily
Sometimes, third-party antivirus or firewall software can interfere with Windows Update and cause error code 646. To check if this is the case, disable your antivirus and firewall temporarily and try to install the updates again. If the updates install successfully, then you will need to add an exception for Windows Update in your security software to prevent this issue from happening in the future.
Method 3: Perform a Clean Boot
A clean boot is a troubleshooting technique where you start your computer with only the essential services and applications running. This can help identify if a third-party software is causing the error code 646.
To perform a clean boot, follow these steps:
1. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run dialog box.
2. Type “msconfig” and press Enter.
3. In the System Configuration window, navigate to the “Services” tab.
4. Check the box next to “Hide all Microsoft services” and click on “Disable all”.
5. Navigate to the “Startup” tab and click on “Open Task Manager”.
6. In the Task Manager, select each startup item and click on “Disable”.
7. Close the Task Manager and click on “OK” in the System Configuration window.
8. Restart your computer and try to install the updates again.
If the updates install successfully, then one of the disabled services or startup items was causing the error. You can now enable them one by one until you find the culprit.
Method 4: Reset Windows Update Components
If none of the above methods work, you can try resetting the Windows Update components. To do this, follow these steps:
1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing the Windows key + R.
2. Type “cmd” and press Enter to open the Command Prompt.
3. In the Command Prompt, type the following commands one by one and press Enter after each one:
net stop w
Running the Windows Update Troubleshooter
Windows updates are an essential part of keeping your computer functioning smoothly and securely. However, there are times when the update process can encounter issues, resulting in frustrating error messages or failed updates. In such cases, running the Windows Update Troubleshooter can often help resolve the problem quickly and easily.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to run the Windows Update Troubleshooter on your Windows computer.
Step 1: Open the Settings app
To begin, open the Settings app on your Windows computer. You can do this by clicking on the Start button and selecting the gear icon from the left pane.
Step 2: Go to Update & Security
In the Settings app, click on the “Update & Security” option.
Step 3: Click on Troubleshoot
In the left pane, click on the “Troubleshoot” option.
Step 4: Select Windows Update
Under the “Get up and running” section, click on the “Windows Update” option.
Step 5: Click on Run the troubleshooter
On the right-hand side, click on the “Run the troubleshooter” button. This will launch the Windows Update Troubleshooter.
Step 6: Follow the prompts
The Windows Update Troubleshooter will now scan your computer for any issues related to Windows updates. If it finds any problems, it will recommend solutions and guide you through the process of fixing them.
Step 7: Apply recommended fixes
Once the troubleshooter has completed its scan, it will provide a list of recommended fixes for any issues it found. Follow the on-screen instructions to apply these fixes.
Step 8: Restart your computer
Once the fixes have been applied, restart your computer to allow the changes to take effect.
Step 9: Check for updates
After your computer restarts, go back to the Windows Update section in the Settings app and try to check for updates again. If the troubleshooter was able to resolve the issue, the updates should now proceed without any problems.
In addition to the built-in troubleshooter, Microsoft also offers a standalone Windows Update Troubleshooter tool, which can be downloaded from their website. This tool has more advanced options and can be particularly useful for resolving complex issues. However, if you are unfamiliar with troubleshooting computer problems, it’s best to stick with the built-in troubleshooter as it is easier to use and less likely to cause any harm to your system.
In conclusion, running the Windows Update Troubleshooter can help resolve many common issues with Windows updates, saving you time and frustration. If you encounter any problems with the update process, be sure to give this tool a try before resorting to more advanced troubleshooting methods.
Installing the Update via Windows Update Catalog
Windows Update Catalog is a website operated by Microsoft that provides users with the option to manually download and install updates for their Windows operating system. This is particularly useful for users who have disabled automatic updates or are experiencing issues with the automatic update process. In this article, we will discuss how to install an update via Windows Update Catalog.
1. Accessing Windows Update Catalog
To install updates via Windows Update Catalog, you must first access the website. You can do this by simply typing “Windows Update Catalog” in the search bar of your browser. This will take you to the official website.
2. Searching for updates
Once you are on the website, you can start your search for updates by clicking on the “Search” box and entering the update name or KB number. You can also refine your search by selecting the appropriate product, version, and language from the drop-down menus. Once you have entered all the relevant information, click on the “Search” button.
3. Reviewing available updates
The website will display all the available updates that match your search criteria. Take your time to review the updates and select the ones that you want to install. You can also click on the update name to get more information about it.
4. Downloading the updates
To download an update, click on the “Add” button next to it. This will add the update to your download basket. You can add multiple updates to the basket before proceeding to the next step.
5. Download basket
Once you have added all the updates you want to install, click on the “Download” button at the top right corner of the page. This will open the download basket, which will show the list of updates you have selected. Click on the “Download” button next to each update to start the download process.
6. Installing the updates
After the download is complete, you can proceed to install the updates. The downloaded updates will be in the form of .msu files. Double-click on each .msu file to start the installation process. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the installation.
7. Restart your computer
Some updates require a computer restart to be fully installed. If this is the case, the website will prompt you to restart your computer. Make sure to save all your work before restarting your computer.
8. Verifying the updates
After the restart, you can verify whether the updates have been successfully installed by going to the “Windows Update” section in your computer’s settings. Here, you should be able to see the list of updates that were recently installed.
In conclusion, Windows Update Catalog is a useful tool for downloading and installing updates for your Windows operating system. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can easily install updates from the website and keep your system updated.
Force Starting Windows Update and Background Intelligent Transfer services
If you’re having issues with Windows Update or Background Intelligent Transfer (BITS) services not starting, don’t worry – there are some simple troubleshooting steps you can try to resolve the issue.
1. Check Your System for Malware Infections
Before diving into any technical troubleshooting, it’s always a good idea to rule out any potential malware infections. Run a full scan with your preferred antivirus software and remove any threats that are detected.
2. Restart the Services
The first step in troubleshooting any service-related issue is to simply try restarting the services. To do this:
– Press the Windows key + R on your keyboard to open the Run command.
– Type “services.msc” and press Enter to open the Services app.
– In the Services window, look for “Windows Update” and “Background Intelligent Transfer Service” in the list of services.
– Right-click each service and select “Restart” from the drop-down menu.
– Once the services have restarted, check if the issue is resolved.
3. Force Start Windows Update and BITS Services
If restarting the services didn’t work, you can try manually forcing them to start. To do this:
– Open the Services app (by following the steps above).
– Right-click on the “Windows Update” service and select “Properties.”
– In the “General” tab, under “Startup type,” select “Automatic.”
– Click “Apply” and then click “Start.”
– Follow the same steps for the “Background Intelligent Transfer Service.”
– Once both services have been started, close the Services app and check if the issue is resolved.
4. Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter
Windows 10 has a built-in troubleshooter specifically for Windows Update issues. To run this troubleshooter:
– Open the Start menu and type “troubleshoot.”
– Select “Troubleshoot settings” from the list of results.
– In the Troubleshoot window, scroll down and select “Windows Update” under “Get up and running.”
– Click “Run the troubleshooter” and follow the prompts to see if any issues are found and resolved.
5. Clear the Windows Update Cache
If the above steps didn’t work, clearing the Windows Update cache may help. Here’s how to do it:
– Open the Start menu and type “cmd.”
– Right-click on “Command Prompt” and select “Run as administrator.”
– In the command prompt, type “net stop wuauserv” and press Enter.
– Then, type “net stop cryptSvc” and press Enter.
– Finally, type “net stop bits” and press Enter.
– Next, type “ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old” and press Enter.
– Then, type “ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 catroot2.old” and press Enter.
– Finally, type “net start wuauserv” and press Enter.
– Close the command prompt and check if the issue is resolved.
6. Use System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM)
If your system files are corrupted, it can cause issues with services like Windows Update and BITS. To check for and repair any corrupted system files, you can use the System File Checker tool. This tool scans your system for any missing or corrupted file and automatically replaces them with a fresh copy. To use SFC:
– Open the Start menu and type “cmd.”
– Right-click on “
Clearing the AppData Key via Registry Editor
AppData is a hidden system folder in Windows that stores user-specific application data such as settings, preferences, and temporary files. Over time, this folder can become bloated and may cause issues with your apps. Clearing the AppData key can help to free up disk space and improve the performance of your system. In this blog post, we will discuss how to clear the AppData key via the Registry Editor.
Step 1: Open the Registry Editor
To start, we need to open the Registry Editor. You can do this by pressing the Windows key + R on your keyboard, type “regedit” in the “Run” box, and hit enter.
Step 2: Navigate to the AppData Registry Key
In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following key: “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders”. You can either manually scroll down or use the search function to find the “AppData” key.
Step 3: Back up the AppData Key
Before making any changes, it is always a good idea to back up the registry key you are about to modify. To do this, right-click on the “AppData” key and select “Export”. Choose a location to save the backup and give it a name. This will serve as a restore point in case anything goes wrong.
Step 4: Clear the AppData Key
Next, we need to clear the value data for the “AppData” key. To do this, double-click on the key and delete the existing value data. Leave the field blank and click “OK” to save the changes.
Step 5: Restart your Computer
To complete the process, restart your computer. This will ensure that any apps using the old AppData key are closed, and the changes can take effect.
Congratulations, you have successfully cleared the AppData key via the Registry Editor. This will remove all the user-specific temporary files and free up disk space on your system. In case you encounter any issues with your apps, you can always restore the backup of the “AppData” key that you created in step 3.
In conclusion, clearing the AppData key via the Registry Editor is a simple and effective way to optimize the performance of your system. However, it is important to note that modifying the registry can be risky, and any wrong changes can cause serious issues with your system. It is always recommended to back up the registry before making any changes and proceed with caution. We hope this blog post was helpful, and you were able to clear the AppData key successfully.
Disabling / Uninstalling 3rd party firewall (if applicable)
Many third-party firewalls come bundled with other security software, such as anti-virus programs or anti-spyware utilities. While these extra layers of protection can enhance your computer’s security, they can also cause conflicts and slow down your system. In these cases, you may want to consider disabling or uninstalling your third-party firewall.
Disabling a third-party firewall is a temporary solution and allows you to keep the software installed on your computer for future use. To disable a third-party firewall, you can typically find an option within the program’s settings or preferences menu. Simply uncheck the box next to “Enable Firewall” or a similar option, and the firewall will stop running.
If you decide that you no longer want the third-party firewall on your computer, you can uninstall it completely. To uninstall a program in Windows, go to the Control Panel and select “Uninstall a program.” From there, you can find the third-party firewall in the list of installed programs and click on “Uninstall.”
It’s important to note that uninstalling a third-party firewall may leave your computer vulnerable to cyber threats if you don’t have another firewall enabled. If you decide to remove a third-party firewall, be sure to have another form of protection in place, such as the Windows Firewall that comes included with the operating system.
In some cases, you may not be able to disable or uninstall a third-party firewall through traditional means. This could be due to the software being deeply integrated into your system or having multiple components that must be uninstalled separately. In these cases, you may need to seek assistance from the software’s support team or consult online resources for specific instructions.
Another important consideration when disabling or uninstalling a third-party firewall is to make sure that you have all of your important data backed up. Any changes to your computer’s security can potentially lead to system errors or crashes, so it’s always best to have a backup on hand.
In summary, while third-party firewalls can provide an extra level of security, they may also cause conflicts and slow down your computer. If you experience these issues, you can either disable or completely uninstall the software. Just be sure to have another form of protection in place before removing your third-party firewall.
Using System Restore
System Restore is a useful feature for all Windows users to have knowledge about. It is a built-in tool that allows you to revert your computer’s system files and settings back to a previous state. This can be helpful in case of any system issues or errors, as it can potentially fix them without losing any of your personal files or data.
Here are some steps on how to use System Restore:
Step 1: Open System Restore
To access System Restore, you can either type “system restore” in the search bar or go to “Control Panel > System and Security > System > System Protection” and click on the “System Restore” button.
Step 2: Choose a Restore Point
Once you have the System Restore window open, you will see a list of restore points (dates and times) that you can choose from. These restore points are created automatically by Windows or by you when you make significant changes to your computer, such as installing a new application or driver.
Step 3: Confirm the Restore Point
After selecting a restore point, you will be given a chance to review it and make sure it is the correct one. You can also see the details of the restore point, such as the description and the programs that will be affected.
Step 4: Start the Restore Process
Once you have confirmed the restore point, click on the “Finish” button to start the restoration process. Your computer will restart, and the system files and settings will be reverted back to the selected restore point.
Step 5: Check the Results
After the process is complete, your computer will restart again, and a message will appear letting you know if the System Restore was successful or not. If it was not successful, you can try using a different restore point.
Alternative Method: Using System Restore in Safe Mode
If your computer is not booting up correctly, you can still access System Restore by starting your computer in Safe Mode. To do this, restart your computer and continuously press the F8 key until the Advanced Boot Options menu appears. Then select “Safe Mode with Command Prompt” and log in to your computer. In the command prompt, type “rstrui.exe” and press Enter to open System Restore.
Important Things to Note:
– System Restore does not affect your personal files, but it might remove any installed applications and change system settings.
– It is recommended to create a restore point manually before making any major changes to your computer, such as installing a new software update or making system changes.
– System Restore is not a backup tool, and it is not a substitute for regularly backing up your important files and data.
In conclusion, System Restore is an essential tool for every Windows user to have in case of any system issues. It can save you time and frustration by restoring your computer to a working state without losing your personal files and data.
Performing a Repair install / Clean Install
Performing a Repair Install / Clean Install: What You Need to Know
In the world of technology, there comes a time when your computer may start giving you problems. Perhaps it’s running too slow, constantly crashing, or showing signs of a virus. In these situations, you may need to perform a repair install or clean install to get your computer back up and running. These two methods may seem similar, but they have distinct differences that are worth understanding. In this blog post, we’ll break down the steps for both types of installations and share some tips to help you decide which method is right for your situation.
A repair install, also known as an in-place upgrade, is a method of reinstalling the operating system without losing your data, installed programs, or settings. This process will essentially replace all system files with the original versions from the installation media, while keeping your personal files and applications intact. A repair install is typically used to fix software related issues, such as operating system errors, driver conflicts, or corrupted system files.
How to Perform a Repair Install:
1. Backup your Important Data: Before proceeding with a repair install, it’s always important to backup your important files and documents, just in case something goes wrong during the process.
2. Download the Installation Media: You will need to have a copy of the operating system’s installation media, whether it’s a DVD or USB, to perform the repair. You can download the installation media from the official website of the operating system or create a bootable USB using the Media Creation Tool.
3. Start the Installation: Insert the installation media and run the setup file to start the installation process. Select the option to upgrade your current version of the OS and follow the prompts to complete the installation.
4. Let the Process Complete: The repair install process may take some time, so be patient and do not interrupt the process. Your computer may restart several times during the installation.
5. Complete Setup: Once the installation is complete, you will be prompted to complete the initial setup of your operating system, which includes setting up your username, password, and other preferences.
A clean install, also known as a custom install, is a method of reinstalling the operating system where all of your data, programs, and settings are erased and the operating system is installed from scratch. This is typically used to fix hardware-related issues, such as a failing hard drive or a serious virus infection. A clean install is also recommended when upgrading to a newer version of the operating system or switching to a different operating system entirely.
How to Perform a Clean Install:
1. Backup your Important Data: As with a repair install, it’s important to backup your important files and documents before proceeding with a clean install.
2. Download the Installation Media: Just like with a repair install, you will need to have a copy of the operating system’s installation media to perform a clean install.
3. Start the Installation: Insert the installation media and run the setup file. During the installation, you will be prompted to select the option for a clean install.
4. Erase All Data: You will be given the option to format your hard drive, which will erase all data on the drive. This step is essential for a clean install.
5. Let the Process Complete: The clean install process may take some time, and your computer may restart several times during the installation. Be patient and do not interrupt the process.
In conclusion, dealing with Windows Update Error Code 646 can be frustrating, but understanding its causes and solutions can make the process much smoother. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can troubleshoot and resolve this error code on your Windows operating system. Remember to check for any software conflicts, run the Windows Update troubleshooter, and perform manual updates if necessary. Additionally, staying updated with the latest Windows updates and ensuring your system is free of malware can prevent this error from occurring in the future. With these tips, you can easily navigate through Windows Update Error Code 646 and continue enjoying a seamless experience with your computer.