How to Cancel Windows 10 Update in Progress.

Last updated on July 13th, 2020

If you want for some reason to cancel a Windows 10 update in progress, continue reading below. As you may know, when installing an update in Windows you must not shutdown the computer before the update installed.

In case that you don't want to install an update, or if you want to cancel the update process because your computer is stuck during the upgrade process and you cannot boot to Windows 10, follow the instructions below.

How to Cancel Windows 10 Update in Progress

How to Cancel Update in Progress in Windows 10. *

* Note: To cancel a Windows 10 update in progress, follow the instructions at method-1 if you can boot to Windows, otherwise, (if you cannot boot to Windows), follow the instructions at Method -2 to cancel the update progress using the recovery environment.

Method 1. Cancel Update in progress from Windows GUI.
Method 2. Cancel Update in progress from Windows RE.

Method 1. Cancel Update in progress from Windows GUI.

To cancel an update in progress in Windows 10, proceed and delete the "SoftwareDistribution" folder (C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution), which is the location of the downloaded Windows updates.

To delete the Windows Update Storage folder:

1. Simultaneously press the Win image + R keys to open the run command box.
2. Type the following command and press OK.

  • services.msc


3. From the list of services, at the right pane locate the Windows Update service.
4. Right click on "Windows Update" service and choose Stop. *


6. Open Windows Explorer and navigate to C:\Windows folder.
7. Locate and then Delete the SoftwareDistribution folder. *


8. Restart your computer.

Method 2. Cancel Update in progress from Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE).

If Windows fails to boot, then you have to cancel the update in progress from the WinRE, by starting your PC from a Windows installation media (USB or DVD). To do that:

1. Boot your computer, from the Windows 10 installation media (USB or DVD).
2. At the Windows Language Setup screen press SHIFT + F10 to access command prompt, or click Next –> Repair your computer –> Troubleshoot –> Advanced Options –> Command Prompt.

windows setup screen

3. Inside the command prompt window, type the following command and press Enter, to view all the available drives on your system:

  • wmic logicaldisk get name

wmic logicaldisk get name

4. Now, by using the "DIR Drive_Letter:" command, examine the contents of the listed drives (except the drive X:), to find out which drive contains the "Windows" folder. *

  • dir C:

* Notes: The above command will display a list of the folders on the drive C:. If you can see the "Windows" folder, then continue to the next step. If you cannot see the "Windows" folder on the C: drive, then move to the next drive on the list. (e.g. dir D:, dir E:, etc.), until you find out which drive contains the "Windows" folder.

e.g.: As you can see in the example below, the Windows folder is located on drive D:

fix windows cannot boot after update

5. When you locate the drive with the "Windows" folder, then navigate to that drive, by typing its drive letter. At this example, the "Windows" folder is located at "D:" drive, so we have to type:

  • D:

6. Create a new folder and name it "Scratch", by typing this command:

  • mkdir D:\Scratch

fix Windows boot problem after update

7. Finally type the following command, to undo the update progress and to rollback your system to its previous state, before starting the update:

  • DISM /Image:D:\ /ScratchDir:D:\Scratch /Cleanup-Image /RevertPendingActions

* Note: Change the drive letter D according to your case.


8. Once the above command executed, you should receive the following message on screen:

"Reverting pending actions from the image….
The operation completed.  Any revert of pending actions will be attempted after the reboot
The operation completed successfully."

Revert Pending Actions DISM

9. Close the command prompt window, and remove the installation media.
Restart your computer and let Windows to boot normally.

10. After restarting, you 'll see a message that says "Undoing changes made to your computer". Just wait for the operation to complete and then you should be able to login to Windows normally.

How to Cancel Update in Progress in Windows 10.

11. After booting to Windows 10, follow the steps at Method 1, to remove the downloaded updates files.

That's it! Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.

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