Can I install Windows updates from the update cache copied earlier from the same machine?

Indronil M August 4, 2013

I will be re installing Windows and as Windows saves its downloaded updates in
Windows/SoftwareDistribution/Download, can I back up the folder and copy it back after reinstalling Windows, so Windows can install updates from the cache?

I don’t have a fast Internet connection and re-downloading all updates is a long process. I have used wsus offline updater, but it doesn’t help much and causes problems.

  1. Bruce E
    August 4, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    I don't believe this will work the way you expect it to. First, the cache is not static. Old updates are eventually removed from it so it does not just continue to grow out of control and consume a great deal of hard drive space (circular caching). Because of this, prerequisite updates may not exist in the cache any longer while their subsequent updates are there. This will cause those updates either to not install at all or fail to install depending on the detection code. There is also the possibility of superseded updates still existing in the cache which have been completely replaced by a later update. It does not make any sense to install an update that is no longer useful only to replace it with another. And all of this is still assuming that you only need the contents of this download directory and not other entries from the registry (I haven't researched that part).

    All of this means that you would benefit more from doing the install then using Windows Update to just start fresh with only those updates that are necessary for your system. Or you could use WSUS Offline Updater which will pull all current updates (needed on your particular system or not) and create a CD/ISO image to do the necessary updates for you after the initial install.

    BTW, what kind of problems does WSUSOU cause for you. I have used it on dozens of systems from XP thru Win7 and never had a single issue with it. All of the proper updates get applied (frequently taking multiple reboots, but it does get the job done) and verifying by running Windows (or Microsoft) Update immediately after completion shows that no more updates are required for these machines.

    You should also be using a later browser than what you currently have. It is way out of date and has critical security issues (normal browsing of a website can allow remote code execution on the system with no user interaction). Update to version 22.

  2. Hovsep A
    August 4, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    How To Create a Customized Windows 7 Installation Disc With Integrated Updates
    perhaps to integrate windows updates to the new windows dvd then they will be installed with WIndows