Problem Updating Windows 10 Error 0x80240016 (Fix)

Some users are encountering the 0x80240016 whenever they need to install a critical, cumulative, or feature update on their Windows 10 computer. This issue is reported to occur with a variety of different KB updates.

How to Fix Windows Update Error 0x80240016

As it turns out, there are several different underlying causes that might be causing this Windows Update. Here’s a list of potential culprits that might be preventing you from installing a pending Windows Update:

  • Common WU glitch – If you’re dealing with a fairly common glitch that Microsoft is already aware of, you should start by deploying the Windows Update Troubleshooter and applying the recommended fix.
  • Badly cached WU data – Another fairly common cause that might trigger this error is a situation in which a cluster of badly cached data is preventing new update signatures from installing. In this case, you should be able to fix the issue by resetting every Windows update component from an elevated Command Prompt.
  • System file corruption – Under certain circumstances, you might be dealing with some type of system corruption that ends up affecting the Windows Update component. If this scenario is applicable, you can use SFC and DISM scans to identify and fix the corruption problems that are blocking the update.
  • Overprotective firewall – As it turns out, Windows Firewall will sometimes interfere with the installation of a security WU update. In this case, you will need to disable the real-time protection of the firewall while the update gets installed, if you don’t want to wait for the security check to be finished in the first place.

Now that you are familiar with every situation that might be triggering the 0x80240016 error code, here’s a list of methods that other affected users have successfully used to get to the bottom of this issue:

1. Running the Windows Update Troubleshooter

Before you go into more advanced repair strategies capable of resolving the Windows Update problem you’re dealing with, start this troubleshooting guide by checking if Windows 10 is capable of resolving the issue automatically.

By default, Windows 10 includes a lot of built-in repair strategies capable of resolving the majority of failures to install a pending Windows 10 update – This is not guaranteed to work, but it’s a good starting point.

Some users that we’re facing this issue have managed to resolve the problem and install the pending update by running the Windows Update troubleshooter and applying the recommended fix that pops up at the end of the scan.

Note: This troubleshooter contains dozens of repair strategies that will be applied automatically if some type of inconsistency is found. If the scan finds a viable repair strategy, the utility will automatically recommend a viable fix that you can apply with a simple click.

Follow the instructions below to deploy the Windows Update troubleshooter to resolve the 0x80240016 error code on Windows 10:

  1. Open up a Run dialog box by pressing Windows key + R. Next, inside the text box, type “ms-settings-troubleshoot” and press Enter to open up the Troubleshooting tab of the Settings app.
    Opening up the WU Troubleshooter
  2. Inside the Troubleshooting tab, go to the right section of the Settings screen then move down to the Get up and running section and click on Windows Update.
  3. From the next menu of the Windows Update troubleshooter, then click on Run the troubleshooter from the newly appeared context menu.
    Opening the Windows Update troubleshooter
  4. After you do this, the tool will automatically begin to scan your system of any inconsistencies. Wait patiently until the initial scan is complete.
    Running the WU troubleshooter

    Note: The Troubleshooter will then go to work and determine whether any of the repair strategies included with it are a match for the WU problem that’s currently affecting your PC.

  5. After a viable repair strategy is found, you will be presented with a new window in which you can click on Apply this fix to apply the recommended fix.
    Applying the recommended fix

    Note: Keep in mind that depending on the fix that the troubleshooter recommends, you might need to follow a series of additional manual instructions.

  6. After the fix is applied, restart your computer and see if the issue is resolved once the next startup is complete.

If the error code 0x80240016 is still occurring when you attempt to install the pending update or the Windows Update troubleshooter didn’t find a viable repair strategy, move down to the next fix directly below.

2. Resetting every Windows Update Component

In case the built-in troubleshooter that you deployed above didn’t work for you, it’s likely that you’re seeing the 0x80240016 Windows Update error due to an update component inconsistency (especially if you’re seeing this error with every update that you attempt to install).

In the vast majority of cases, you will see the 0x80240016 error due to the fact that the updating component is somehow stuck in a limbo state (neither opened nor closed). If this scenario is applicable, you should be able to fix the problem swiftly by resetting Windows Update.

Follow the instructions below to reset every Windows Update component from an elevated CMD prompt.

  1. Start by pressing Windows key + R to open up a Run dialog box. Inside the text box, type ‘cmd’ and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open up an elevated Command Prompt window.
    Opening an elevated CMD prompt

    Note: Once you’re inside the UAC (User Account Control), click Yes to grant admin access.

  2. Inside an elevated CMD window, type the following commands in any order and press Enter after each one:
    net stop wuauserv
    net stop cryptSvc
    net stop bits
    net stop msiserver

    Note: This set of commands will stop all the relevant Windows Update services from running: BITS service, Cryptographic service, MSI Installer service, Windows update service (main).

  3. After you manage to stop every relevant service, run the following commands in order to clear and rename two vital WU folders (SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2):

    ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old 
    ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 Catroot2.old

    Note: These two folders (SoftwareDistribution and Catroot) are the two main folders responsible for holding and maintaining Windows Update files. You can’t really delete them conventionally so the best way to ensure that they don’t have any corrupted files that might contribute to this error is to rename them in order to force your OS to create new and healthy equivalents.

  4. Once the two folders have been renamed, run the following commands in order to re-enable the services that you previously disabled (at step 2):
    net start wuauserv
    net start cryptSvc
    net start bits
    net start msiserver
  5. Once every relevant service has been restarted, repeat the WU action that was previously triggering the 0x80240016 error and see if the problem is now fixed.

If the same error code is still occurring while attempting to install a pending Windows Update, move down to the next potential fix below.

3. Deploying SFC and DISM scans

If refreshing every Windows Update component from the CMD window didn’t fix the issue, you should also consider that some kind of system file corruption is causing this particular Windows Update error.

In this case, you should proceed by running a couple of scans with two built-in utilities – System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management(DISM).

Note: Even though SFC and DISM share some similarities, we recommend that you run both scans in quick succession in order to improve your chance of fixing the corrupted system files.

The ideal place to start is with a simple SFC scan.

Important: After you initiate this procedure, it’s very important to NOT close the CMD window even if the utility looks like it froze. Wait patiently until the process is complete because interrupting the operation might cause logical errors on your HDD/SSD.

Performing an SFC scan

Note: This tool is entirely local and will not require you to be actively connected to the internet.

Once the SFC scan is completed successfully, reboot your computer and see if the issue is fixed once the next computer startup is complete by attempting to install the Feature Update once again.

I the same error is still occurring, deploy a DISM scan and follow the on-screen prompts to complete the operation.

Initiating a DISM scan

Note: DISM uses a sub-component of Windows Update to download healthy equivalents aimed at replacing the corrupted system files. Because of this, you need to make sure that you have reliable Internet before initiating this operation. 

Once the DISM scan has been completed successfully, restart your computer once again and see if the 0x80240016 error is now fixed.

4. Turn of Windows Firewall Temporarily

As it turns out, certain security Windows Updates will refuse to install if Windows Firewall is currently performing a background security check.

Normally, you should eventually be able to install the pending update if you’re patient enough to allow the background check to finish.

But if you are impatient, you should be able to install the pending Windows Update right away by force-stopping Windows Firewall and disabling the real-time protection until the installation of the update is complete.

Follow the instructions below to temporarily disable Windows Defender in order to allow the security WU update to install:

  1. Press Windows key + R to open up a Run dialog box. Next, type ‘windowsdefender’ in the text box and press Enter to open up the Windows Security menu.
    Accessing Windows Defender
  2. After you’re inside the WIndows Security menu, click on the Virus & threat protection tab, then go ahead and click on the Manage settings hyperlink (under Virus & Threat protection settings).
    Accessing the Virus and Threat protection screen
  3. At the next screen, disable the toggle associated with Firewall & Network protection.

    Disabling the Firewall
  4. Go all the way back to the first Windows Security window, then click on Firewall & Network Protection.
  5. Once you get to the next screen, click on the network that is currently active, then disable the toggle associated with Windows Defender firewall.
    Disabling the Windows Defender Firewall
  6. After you do this, restart your computer repeat the installation of the pending update to see if the issue is now fixed.

Kamil Anwar

Kamil is a certified MCITP, CCNA (W), CCNA (S) and a former British Computer Society Member with over 9 years of experience Configuring, Deploying and Managing Switches, Firewalls and Domain Controllers also an old-school still active on FreeNode.