Why Potential Windows Update Database Error Detected not Fixed?

When there is any kind of glitch during the Windows update procedure, then there is an inbuilt tool which helps to automatically resolve the problem. This tool is known as ‘Windows Update Troubleshooter’. But while you attempt to correct the problem in relation to Windows update via the troubleshooter, then often the error message “potential Windows update database error detected” appears. Another reason is when the Operating System is unable to access the ‘Windows’ directory.

However, there are other causes available. For instance, if the update service of the OS has some malfunction, or if there are corrupt system files within the machine, then there is a high possibility to encounter this problem. Moreover, the execution of some other reliable software service during the bootup can also trigger this issue.

Methods to Remove this Error Message:

This section of the article will provide various points that can help you to easily and quickly resolve the error message, “potential Windows update database error detected”. So, follow them accurately:

1. Clean Boot Procedure

When any reliable software interferes with the normal update procedure of the Windows OS, then chances are higher that you might face this error message. Therefore, perform a clean boot procedure in order to locate the problematic service or application. To do that, follow the steps below.

  • First, press both the keys ‘Windows + R’ together to launch the dialog box ‘Run’. Next, within this dialog box, write the text that follows “msconfig” beside the ‘Open:’ label. Then, simply tap on the button ‘OK’.
  • Now, a new window will pop up which has the name ‘System Configuration’. Inside this window, navigate to the tab ‘Services’.
  • Under that tab, there will be entries for all the services of every application installed on the computer within a list. After the list, put a checkmark on the option ‘Hide all Microsoft services’ and then hit the button ‘Disable all’ present on the extreme right of this window.
  • After that, go to the tab ‘Startup’ and under it tap on the link ‘Open Task Manager’ and do the same. At this moment another new window Task Manager’ will pop up, with the ‘Startup’ tab already chosen in it.
  • Inside this tab, you will get a list of all the applications that initialize during the startup. Now, select and right-click on the first application, then tap on the ‘Disable’ option from the popup menu. Repeat the last step for all the remaining applications on this list.
  • Then, close the ‘Task Manager’ and go back to the ‘System Configuration’ window. Here, click on the ‘Apply’ and ‘OK’ buttons respectively and reboot the computer.
  • When the computer boots up, see if this error comes back or not. If you do not see this problem then some application that was deactivated is the culprit.
  • To get rid of this problem permanently, follow the substeps beneath.
    • Go to the ‘Task Manager’ and then choose the ‘Startup’ tab again.
    • After that, enable each of the applications and then check if the error pops up or not. Every time when you enable an application then reboot the machine.
    • Once the problematic application is found, then either you can update, disable or remove it.

Start the Services of Windows Update Once Again:

When you encounter any kind of malfunction in the update service, then the potential Windows update database error detected message might appear. The feasible answer to this issue is to start the services of the Windows update once again. To perform this process follow the steps mentioned underneath.

  • First, right-click on the ‘Windows’ logo present in the taskbar. This will open an ‘Options Menu’. Now, from that menu locate and then choose the option ‘Run’.
  • This will open a new dialog box that has the same name as the option you chose in the previous step. Within this dialog box, write the text on the blank space “services.msc” just to the right side of the label ‘Open:’. Then, press the ‘Enter’ key.
  • A new window with the name ‘Services’ will open up. Here, within a list all the services of the computer are present.
  • From that list, locate and select micro a service ‘Windows Update’. Next, right-click on that service and tap on the option ‘Stop’ if it is currently being executed. Otherwise, you do not have to perform this step.
  • Now, go to the taskbar then find and click on the ‘File Explorer’ icon to open it. Inside this directory,  type the following path on the address bar – “C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Datastore” and hit the key ‘Enter’. This action will direct you inside the ‘DataStore’ directory.
  • Simply, tap on the combination of ‘Ctrl + A’ to choose all the contents within the directory ‘DataStore’. Then, press the ‘Delete’ key to remove everything from it.
  • Once again input a new path on the address bar of the ‘File Explorer’, which is as follows – “C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download” and then hit ‘Enter’ option. At this moment, the contents within the ‘Downloads’ folder will be presented. Repeat the previous step.
  • Finally, open the ‘Services’ window again and choose the ‘Windows Update’ service. Then, after that, right-click on it and select the option ‘Start’.

Manually Download the Updates using Microsoft Update Catalog:

One of the best ways to avoid getting this problem is to download and then install the updates manually from the Microsoft Update Catalog. Here are the steps on how to do it.

  • First, tap on the combination of ‘Windows + I’ keys simultaneously. This will launch a new window which has the name ‘Windows Settings’.
  • This window contains a list of settings categories for the Windows Operating System, which you can alter according to your preference.
  • Within this window, locate and click on the category ‘Update & Security’. As soon as you do this, then a new page opens up with the heading ‘Windows Update’.
  • On that page, click on the link ‘View update history’. After that, another new page will come up, here on the list see which updates were not installed due to failure and note it down.
  • Now, choose the ‘Home’ icon on the upper left corner within the ‘Settings’ window to go to the main page. Then, select the category ‘System’, this will open a new page.
  • Within this page go to the left panel and tap on the option ‘About’. Next, scroll down a little bit and move to section ‘Device specifications’. Under this section look at the label ‘System type’, in order to see the architecture of the machine.
  • Launch the web browser and then visit the official page of ‘Microsoft Update Catalog’.
  • Once this page opens up, then input the name of the update from the fourth step and click on the ‘Search’ button.
  • After that, from the result of this search, choose the correct update for the Windows OS and then tap on the ‘Download’ button.
  • A popup window within this page will come up, in it just click on the link that is present in order to initiate the download process. Wait for the procedure of download to complete.
  • When the download gets over then double-click on the setup file to open the installer wizard.
  • Finally, follow the information on the installer wizard and accordingly install updates on your computer.

Procedure to Execute SFC and DISM Tool:

If the system files have got corrupt or are missing somehow, then it might trigger the potential Windows Update database error detected not fixed message. The possible solution to this issue is to use the SFC tool. An ‘SFC’ or ‘System File Checker’ is an inbuilt utility for Windows, that scans the OS for any corruption within the system files and restore them whenever necessary. If some corrupt system files cannot be resolved by the SFC, then comes to the ‘Deployment Image Servicing and Management’ or ‘DISM’ utility. This is a tool that replaces the corrupt system files which the SFC cannot able to restore. Follow the simple lines below to perform it.

  • First, tap on the ‘Cortana’ logo, to open the search area. After that, within the empty space, type the text “command prompt”. Then, from the search output, choose the option ‘Command Prompt’.
  • Now, a new window with the black background and white text will pop up. Inside this window, type the command – “sfc /scannow” and then press ‘Enter’ key for execution. This command when starts to execute will scan for any corrupt system files. If any such files are found out, then those will automatically be restored. This process may take some time to get over.
  • Once the execution of SFC command is complete, examine if this error comes back or not.
  • If the problem reappears then, input the following command and click on the ‘Enter’ key to execute it – “Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth”. This is a command that replaces all the corrupt system files with the cached copy.
  • At last, restart the computer and check whether this error pops up once again or not.

Use Media Creation Tool to Upgrade:

If not a single point present within the above section that allows you to correct this problem properly, then as a last resort utilize the Media Creation Tool to Upgrade the OS. To make that happen, follow the underlying sentences.

  • First, open the browser that you prefer and then type the official address of the Microsoft website on the URL bar to visit the same.
  • Within that page search for the application ‘Microsoft Creation Tool’ and then download the setup file.
  • Once the download is over, then double-click on the setup file and open the ‘Media Creation Tool’. If a UAC prompt pops up, then choose the ‘Yes’ button.
  • On the window that comes up next, choose the button ‘Accept’. After that, on the page with a heading ‘What do you want to do?’, click the radio button ‘Upgrade this PC now.
  • Now, tap on the ‘Next’ button. Then, follow the information that comes on the window, in order to perform an upgrade. This procedure can take much time to complete so be patient.
  • At last, when the upgrade process is completed, try to do the Windows Update and see if this issue reappears or not.

Ending Note…

You can easily solve the potential Windows update database error detected message when it comes by following all the points on the above section. But, even though after following all the various steps present in the previous section still you are unable to eliminate this issue. Then do not panic at all. Only, provide the details of your query on the comment section present at the lower end of this page.

Maria Colombo
Maria Colombo
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