Windows Update Agent: What Is It? How Does It Work? [MiniTool Wiki]
What Is Windows Update Agent
Windows Update Agent is an agent program, which was first introduced for Windows Vista. It is used with Windows Server Update Services to automatically provide patches and it can scan your computer and determine which version of Windows you are running. Then, the update agent can push new updates to your PC.
You’re can manage the Windows Update Agent in Control Panel, Settings application, Group Policy, Microsoft Intune, Windows PowerShell. Windows Update Agent is compatible with Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10.
5 Part of Windows Update Agent
Microsoft defines 5 important parts in the Windows Update Agent.
Service Availability: It is the part of detecting, downloading, and installing Windows updates. It also handles the updates of some other programs.
Server Connectivity: It is an API (application programming interface). It connects your computer to the location that Microsoft uses to deliver updates.
Update Detection: Scan your computer regularly for updates automatically.
Update Downloads: Download available downloads and mandatory updates from a secure location used by Microsoft.
Update Installation: Installs the available updates.
How long does it take to download/install/update Windows 10? After reading this post, you can know much information on Windows 10 installation time.
How to Check Which Version of Windows Update Agent Is Installed
How to check which version of the Windows Update Agent tool is installed? Follow the steps below:
Step 1: Use API in WinHTTP and download Wuredist.cab.
Step 2: Use Cryptography Functions to check if the file has a Microsoft digital signature. If not, don’t use it.
Step 3: Use the file decompression interface API to extract XML files in Wuredist.cab.
Step 4: Determine which architecture your computer is using. If you don’t know how to determine, refer to this post - Is My Computer 64 Bit or 32 Bit? Try the 5 Ways to Judge out.
Step 5: Call IWindowsUpdateAgentInfo::GetInfo to determine the current version of the Windows Update Agent.
How Does Windows Update Agent Work
Windows Update Agent searches and downloads updates from trusted Microsoft sources. This includes:
- Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) server
- Microsoft's updated websites
- Peer to peer distribution (Windows 10)
Once the update agent detects a new update missing from the computer, it will start working. You don't have to spend any time searching for updates and trying to determine which updates to install.
How to Update Windows Update Agent
Microsoft has released the update for its Windows update agent which has a couple of bug fixes. The download links are given below:
Windows 7: https://support.microsoft.com/kb/3138612
To get more information, read How to Update the Windows Update Agent to the Latest Version.
After downloading the corresponding version, you’ll see an MSU file in your download folder. But before you run this MSU file you must ensure that the Windows update agent is not running. Otherwise, it would not allow you to install this update.
To disable Windows update agent before installation:
- Run Command Prompt as administrator.
- In the command line window, type net stop wuauserv and press the Enter key.
After installing the update and restarting the system, again try to update Windows.
How to Uninstall Windows Update Agent
How to uninstall Windows Update Agent? Here is a guide.
Step 1: Click the Start menu at the bottom right side of the toolbar.
Step 2: Go to Program Files and look for Windows Update. If Windows Update is not listed in your Program Files, click Control Panel in the Start menu.
Step 3: Double-click Windows Update to open it. Then, click the File tab.
Step 4: Select Uninstall Update to uninstall the Windows Update Agent. Then, click Yes.
Step 5: Type msconfig in the Run box. This opens a window that contains your startup files. Step 6: Click the StartUp tab and scroll down to find Windows Update. Uncheck the Update box, then click Apply and choose Close.
Step 7: At last, you need to click Restart.
To sum up, here is all the information about Windows Update Agent. I hope that this post can be helpful to you.