“We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes.” This message on a Windows computer screen can send a chill down the spine of any user. What is the significance of this situation? How did it come about? What steps should follow? These inquiries are instinctive and warrant explanations. Within this article, we shall delve into the prevalent origins of this issue and present remedies to restore your system’s proper functionality.

Understanding the Problem

The “We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes” error is a critical issue that requires comprehensive understanding. Let’s embark on an exploration of the complexities associated with this predicament.

1: Windows Update Conflicts

  1. Conflicting Software: Sometimes, third-party software can conflict with the new updates, causing the system to stall during the update process. Security software or system optimization tools may interfere with Windows Update.
  2. Driver Incompatibility: Drivers that are not compatible with the new update can cause conflicts. This is particularly common with graphic and sound drivers.

2: Incomplete Update Files

  1. Corrupt Files: During the downloading phase, update files may become corrupt due to network interruptions or other underlying issues. This corruption leads to failure in the installation process.
  2. Lack of Space: If the system drive doesn’t have enough space, the update files cannot be downloaded completely, leading to failure in updating.

3: System Compatibility Issues

  1. Incompatible Hardware: Some updates may require hardware features that are not available on older or certain models of computers, leading to an inability to complete the update process.
  2. Operating System Version Issues: Updates designed for a specific version of Windows may cause conflicts if they are installed on an incompatible version.
  3. BIOS/UEFI Conflicts: Sometimes, the motherboard’s BIOS or UEFI settings can conflict with the update, especially if they are outdated or improperly configured.

4: Failed Previous Updates

  1. Cumulative Updates: Windows updates are often cumulative, meaning they build on previous updates. If a prior update fails, subsequent updates might also fail as they rely on the complete success of previous ones.
  2. Reverting Changes: If the system detects an issue during the update process, it will attempt to revert to the previous state. Sometimes, this undoing of changes fails, and the system gets stuck in a loop of attempting and failing to revert.

5: Network Issues

  1. Unstable Connection: An unstable or slow internet connection during the update download can cause partial downloads or corruption of update files, leading to this error.

Understanding these underlying causes is the first step in resolving the “We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes” error. Recognizing the specific cause helps in choosing the appropriate solution to get the system back to its normal operation.


Fixing the “We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes” issue can be complex, but there are various methods to resolve it. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

1: Restarting the System

  1. Restart the Computer: Sometimes, a basic restart can break the loop and allow the system to correct itself.
  2. Access Safe Mode: If the problem persists, restart the computer and press the F8 key to enter Safe Mode. This will allow you to troubleshoot without any non-essential drivers and software.

2: Using Windows Troubleshooter

  1. Open Troubleshooter: Go to and type “Troubleshoot.”

Now you have to click on “Additional troubleshooters.”

  1. Run Windows Update Troubleshooter: Click on “Windows Update” and then “Run the troubleshooter.” 

Abide by the directions provided on the screen to recognize and resolve the issue through automated means.

3: Updating Drivers

  1. Open Device Manager: Press Win + X and choose Device Manager.
  1. Update the Drivers: Right-click on each driver and select “Update Driver.” 

Select “Search automatically for updated driver software.”

4: Clearing Cache and Temporary Files

  1. Delete Temporary Files: Press Win + R, type “%temp%” and press Enter. 

Select all files and delete them.

  1. Clear Windows Update Cache: Stop the Windows Update service from the services.msc window, then navigate to C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download and delete all files.

5: Performing a System Restore

  1. Access System Restore: Go to Windows Search bar and type “Recovery” 

From there Click on “Open System Restore.”

  1. Choose a Restore Point: Select a restore point prior to the update failure. This should revert the system to that state without affecting personal files.
  1. Complete the Restoration: Follow the instructions displayed on the screen to finalize the procedure.

6: Manual Update Using Microsoft Update Catalog

  1. Identify the Update: Determine the specific update that failed using Windows Update History.
  2. Download the Update: Go to the Microsoft Update Catalog and search for the update using its Knowledge Base (KB) number. Download the correct version for your system.
  3. Install Manually: Run the downloaded file to manually install the update.

By following these strategies, most users can resolve the “We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes” error. However, if these solutions fail, seeking professional technical assistance may be necessary.


Fixing the “We couldn’t complete the updates undoing changes.” error might look challenging but following the aforementioned steps can usually resolve the issue. Always remember to keep your system maintained and backed up to avoid such problems in the future.