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How To Cure Windows Update Error “0x800A138F”

The 0x800A138F error in Windows XP & Vista is incredibly annoying and frustrating. It basically prevents you from being able to update your system. Fortunately, this error is caused by a simple problem which is actually very easy to fix. Here’s what you need to do…

What Is The 0x800A138F Error?

The 0x800A138F error is shown on Windows Vista & XP when you try and update your computer. This error normally displays on screen and doesn’t do anything more than stop your update and suggest you contact Microsoft for support. Here’s what the typical 0x800A138F error looks like:

Software Update Incomplete
The Windows Update software did not update successfully.
Send error number to Microsoft (0x800A138F)


Windows Update Error Windows Update has encountered an error and cannot display the requested page. Select from any of the following pages for information about Windows Update services, or send us your feedback. Windows Update Home Page About Windows Update Support Information Send error number to Microsoft (0x800A138F

This error is highly annoying and common, and can display randomly and overnight. Here is what causes the error in the first place:

  • Corrupted Internet Options
  • Damaged Internet Settings
  • Windows unable to read the Updates from Microsoft’s servers
  • Corrupted registry settings

How To Fix The 0x800A138F Error

Step 1 – Check The Time & Date Of Your PC

A big cause of the 0x800A138F error is to have the time & date of your PC formatted in the wrong way. You should double-click on the time at the bottom right hand part of your screen to bring up the date & time for your PC. From here, you can change and update the time if it’s out of sync. An acute problem that many Windows computers seem to have, is that if hte date & time on your PC is not synced with the update release for Windows, it still cause all sorts of errors.

Step 2 – Clean Out Temporary Internet Files

Download This Cleanup Tool

Whenever you perform a Windows update, it has to store the update files inside the temporary Internet folder. This folder is where all your downloads and other essential Internet components are kept, and if you have any temporary Internet files that are stuck inside this folder, your PC will just show the 0x800A138F error as it will not be able to save its own update files in there. Here’s how to fix this:

1) You could download this cleanup tool to automatically remove temp Internet files


1) Open Internet Explorer

2) Along the top, click the “Tools” option

3) Click The “Internet Options” option

4) On the “General” tab, click the “Delete” button

5) Select The “Delete Browsing History” option and then remove all you can

6) Restart IE for changes to take effect

Once you’ve done that, try using the Windows Update tool again by clicking on Start > Control Panel > Windows Update. If the error is still there, you may wish to proceed to step 3…

Step 3 – Change The Language Settings In Internet Explorer

One of the strange causes of the 0x800A138F error is to have the wrong language settings on your system. You should make sure that Internet Explorer’s default language is set to English and here’s how…

1) Open Internet Explorer

2) Click on “Tools” from the top menu

3) Click on “Internet Options”

4) Go to the “General” tab

5) Click “Languages”

6) When the “Language Preferences” Window appears, click the “Add” button and add English as the default language.

This may or may not repair the 0x800A138F error but is extremely

Step 3 – Make Sure IE Has The Right Security Settings

In order to make Internet Explorer better able to download the updates that Windows needs, you should make sure that it’s able to use SSL 2.0 and SSL 3.0 on your system. To do this, you need to be able to use this method:

1) Open Internet Explorer

2) Click Tools

3) Go to Internet Options

4) Click Advanced Tab

5) Under Security place a checkmark next to SSL 2.0 and SSL 3.0.

6) Press Apply then click OK.

This should allow Windows to download the Updates if it previously wasn’t able to.

Step 4 – Disable Antivirus / Firewall For The Update

If you’re running third party antivirus & firewall software, you should try disabling it for the update. This software is designed to block any malicious or unnatural Internet connections, and if it sees the Internet updates as a malicious Internet connection, it’s going to block the connection. Disabling your firewall or antivirus temporarily should allow the updater to connect to Microsoft’s server and update your files.

Step 5 – Clean Out The Registry

Download This Registry Cleaner

One of the biggest issues for Windows is having a series of corrupt or damaged files inside the ‘registry’ database. This is a big problem because when Windows tries to update itself, it has to read a series of settings and options from the registry, and if it cannot read many of the files because they are damaged or corrupted, it’s going to show a number of errors… including the 0x800A138F error. To fix this, you should download a registry cleaner tool and let it scan your PC. It will remove all the damaged settings from the registry database and allow your computer to run very smoothly indeed.

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