How to fix Windows Defender update error 0x800704e8

By: Madeleine Dean
2 minute read

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Updating Windows Defender is not an easy task. There are various errors and technical issues that may prevent users from updating their antivirus program. According to recent reports, Windows Defender can’t install the latest definition updates due to error 0x800704e8.

Here how one user describes this update issue:

I never used to have problems downloading the latest Windows Defender definition updates, but for some reason just lately there seems to have been an issue with this. […]

While trying to download the latest definitions in Windows Defender, the instillation part of the process apparently failed after the download, then a message came up saying “Virus and Spyware definitions couldn’t be updated. Error Code 0x800704e8” (see picture below)

Windows Defender error 0x800704e8

Fix: Windows Defender error 0x800704e8

Users also confirm that the Windows Update Troubleshooter doesn’t identify any problems related to this error message. As a result, it can’t fix the problem. At the same time, users report that some Windows Defender updates download successfully, and the error message 0x800704e8 doesn’t always come up.

To fix error message 0x800704e8, follow these troubleshooting steps:


For various PC problems, we recommend this tool.

This software will repair common computer errors, protect you from file loss, malware, hardware failure and optimize your PC for maximum performance. Fix PC issues now in 3 easy steps:

  1. Download this PC Repair Tool rated "Excellent" on TrustPilot.com.
  2. Click “Start Scan” to find Windows issues that could be causing PC problems.
  3. Click “Repair All” to fix all issues with Patended Technologies (requires upgrade).

1. Remove any third-party antivirus program that you may have installed on your computer. Make sure that you have completely removed all antivirus leftovers by using dedicated third-party apps and manually deleting the remaining folders.

2. Manually update Windows Defender’s definitions via the Update button on the Update tab. Perform a full scan to delete or quarantine anything detected.

3. Run the Windows Update Troubleshooter again.

4. Type cmd > launch as an Administrator and type the following commands:

%PROGRAMFILES%\Windows Defender\MPCMDRUN.exe – removes all Windows Defender definitions

%PROGRAMFILES%\Windows Defender\MPCMDRUN.exe – updates the antivirus

5. Launch Windows Defender and press the Update button. It may take a few minutes for the update process to complete. Should you see a “failed connection” error message, simply close the window. The latest Windows Defender updates should already be installed.

If you’ve come across other workarounds to fix the Windows Defender error message 0x800704e8, list the troubleshooting steps in the comment section below.

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For various PC problems, we recommend this tool.

This software will repair common computer errors, protect you from file loss, malware, hardware failure and optimize your PC for maximum performance. Fix PC issues now in 3 easy steps:

  1. Download this PC Repair Tool rated "Excellent" on TrustPilot.com.
  2. Click “Start Scan” to find Windows issues that could be causing PC problems.
  3. Click “Repair All” to fix all issues with Patended Technologies (requires upgrade).

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