Remove WSUS client settings and revert to using the default Microsoft update servers

Do you have a machine that, in the past, was configured to use WSUS, but has now been moved and is unable to receive updates because the WSUS settings are bad?  I ran into this and decided to document the steps.

The easiest way to clear out the WSUS configuration information is to wipe out this registry key.

HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate

After clearing it out, restart the “Windows Update” service.

This also may reset some Windows Update settings, for instance, the one that decides if updates should install automatically or after asking permission.  You’ll want to check that out.

You may find yourself getting a “0x80244010” error when trying to check for updates.  This error seems to be related to the Windows Update client making too many requests to the server.  It should work itself out if you try checking for updates again, perhaps two or three times.  If it doesn’t, another solution is to backup or delete the

C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution

folder.  Then, restart the “Windows Update” service again and try checking for updates once more.

Note, if your machine is attached to a domain and that domain is providing WSUS configuration information, the WSUS settings will be restored to those configured by the domain whenever you log in.  You’ll want to check with your domain administrator if there is a problem with how WSUS is set up.

Giving credit:

Information for this post came from these two TechNet Q&A posts.

14 thoughts on “Remove WSUS client settings and revert to using the default Microsoft update servers”

  1. Thanks for posting this. I occasionally receive out-of-warranty computers from a business which are connected to their domain. They have lots of little tweaks, and although it would probably be easier to simply wipe them and restart, to save myself the “searching for drivers” phase of reinstallation, I like to simply remove the computer from the domain, uninstall the specialized software, and delete the registry tweaks to get a pretty nice/working computer out of the deal. Your post was just what the doctor ordered. Thanks, again.

  2. Man this worked great. I have several small domains where the WSUS is broken on SBS Servers, And I have had a terrible time trying to get them to take updates, since they want to utilize WSUS for their updates. This worked perfectly. Didn’t have to reboot the machine. I imagine that rebooting would probably put the old settings back in. But this works in a pinch.

  3. Hi,
    why don’t you just disable “UseWUServer” in HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU (I mean set UseWUServer = 0 ) ? It should do the same IMO…

  4. @Claus

    I’m in the same situation as you are.
    After you had installed the new Windows Features of which were not available on WSUS, how did you go about applying the registry settings back again? Did you backup the reg. before the change, and then import settings after the updates?

    Thanks
    Fraser

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  6. Hi, we have a similar problem after removing a WSUS server. However, this solution doesn’t quite work for us. As soon as I delete the WindowsUpdate registry key, I hit F5 to refresh and it’s back almost instantly. I have checked our GPO’s of which none are applying WSUS settings. Somehow from somewhere, something is still overwriting local settings. I have gone through all our other GPO’s to see if it’s maybe Default Domain Policy or another. No go. This is really breaking my brain. Any other ideas?

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