Fix Windows 10 Update error 0x80070020 in 7 easy steps

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
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how to fix Windows Update Error 0x80070020
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Releasing a new major update for Windows 10 is a huge day for everyone at Microsoft. New features are being rolled out, along with additional improvements and bug fixes, to make the system better than in the previous version.

While all this sounds great in theory, in practice, many users have problems even acquiring the update. Update issues that prevent users from normally installing a new major update.

As the history showed, there hasn’t been a single Windows 10 major update immune to installation issues, and they come in various forms, or more precisely, as various error codes.

In this article, we’re going to talk about error code 0x80070020, that reportedly prevents users from installing a new version of Windows 10.

Since installing the freshest Windows 10 release is highly advisable, we can’t let this error hang in there forever. So, we’ve prepared a couple solutions, that may be appropriate for dealing with error code 0x80070020 in Windows 10.

How can I solve Windows 10 update error 0x80070020?

Error code 0x80070020 can prevent you from installing the latest updates. Speaking of update issues, users also reported the following problems:

  • Error 0x80070020 Windows 7 – This error can appear on older versions as well. Even though these solutions are intended for Windows 10, almost all of them can be applied to older versions of Windows, so feel free to try them out.
  • Download error – 0x80070020 Windows 10 – Sometimes this error can appear while downloading the latest Windows 10 builds. If that happens, restart Windows Update components and check if that helps.

Solution 1 – Disable your antivirus

Third-party antivirus programs and Windows are not the best friends ever. Having a third-party antivirus installed on your computer can actually cause more harm than you’d hope for.

That conflict can cause malfunctions of various Windows features, including Windows Update.

If you’re using a third-party antivirus, you might want to try changing its settings and check if that helps. In some cases, you might want to completely disable your antivirus in order to solve this problem.

Even if you disable your antivirus, Windows 10 has its own antivirus in form of Windows Defender, so your PC won’t be in any danger.

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In some cases you might even have to completely remove your antivirus to solve this issue. If removing the antivirus solves the problem, you should consider switching to a different antivirus solution.

There are many great antivirus tools, but one of the best is BullGuard, so if you’re looking for a new antivirus, you might want to try this tool. This application is fully compatible with Windows 10, and it won’t interfere with it in any way.

If you want to fully remove your antivirus software from the PC, there’s a dedicated guide for Norton users that will help you do just that. If you’re a McAfee user, don’t worry. There’s a similar guide for you, too.

Not satisfied with your current antivirus? Want a better one that offers more features? Take a look here to find the best ones on the market right now!


Solution 2 – Restart BITS

Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) is a Windows process responsible for delivering updates to your computer. So, if this process gets corrupt, you’ll have problems receiving updates.

In order to make it work again, we should restart BITS, and try to run Windows Update once again. Here’s exactly what you need to do:

  1. Press Windows Key +R and enter services.msc. Press Enter or click OK.
    Download error - 0x80070020 Windows 10
  2. Find Background Intelligent Transfer Service. Right-click and open Properties.
    Error 0x80070020 Windows 7
  3. On the General tab, find Startup type and choose Automatic.
  4. If the BITS is not running, right-click and choose Start.
    Download error - 0x80070020 Windows 10
  5. Confirm selection and close window.

If nothing’s wrong with BITS, move on to another solution.


Solution 3 – Reset Windows Update services

Windows Update relies on various services in order to work properly, and if there are any issues with Windows Update, you might be able to fix them by resetting Windows Update services.

This is relatively straightforward, and in order to do this, you need to run a few commands in Command Prompt. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Start Command Prompt as administrator.
  2. When Command Prompt starts, run the following commands:
  • net stop wuauserv
  • net stop cryptSvc
  • net stop bits
  • net stop msiserver
  • ren C:WindowsSoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
  • ren C:WindowsSystem32catroot2 Catroot2.old
  • net start wuauserv
  • net start cryptSvc
  • net start bits
  • net start msiserver

After running these commands, check if the problem with Windows Update is resolved. If you don’t want to enter all these commands manually, you can perform this solution by using Windows Update reset script.

Editor’s Note: This article continues on the next page with additional solutions to fix error 0x80070020. Bookmark our hub dedicated to fixing Windows Update errors just in case you need to fix other update issues later on.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • If Windows Update encountered an error with the code 0x80070020 you can fix this by resetting BITS service or by terminating and restart the service that is stuck. Our article explains more on this how to approach this issue.

  • The Windows Update Database corruption is usually fixed by running command-line instruction to scan and repair system files on the drive. The best commands are SFC and CHKDSK. See this article for any issues with sfc /scannow.

  • DISM stands for Deployment Image Servicing and Management. It is a tool used via command-line to create or repair Windows images. If you are having troubles with this tool, check our guide to fix DISM issues in Windows 10.

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I upgraded to the latest Windows 10 (5/30/2018) and the only problem I’ve encountered is in Creating a System Image. After over 2 hours of what appears to be copying my system image over to my external hard drive, I get the message: The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process (0x80070020). This did not occur before the upgrade, so there’s definitely a bug somewhere.