Methods to Fix Windows Update Error 0x800f0984 for Version 21H1

The error 0x800f0984, in technical terms, means that PSFX_E_MATCHING_BINARY_MISSING i.e. the matching component directory exists but binary is missing. In simple words, that the update you are trying to install could not find the essential files on the older Windows 10 version installed.

The issue occurs when a user’s PC fails to install the Windows 10 update 21H1 with error 0x800f0984; either the download does not start or the download/install is stuck at some percentage. Usually, the following type of messages is shown:

Feature Update to Windows 10, Version 21H1 Failed to Install 0x800f0984

It is not a good sight to see an error (like error 0x800f0984) when you are expecting your system to be more stable and secure after applying the Windows updates. Following are the main causes we can identify that may result in error 0x800f0984.

  • Power Saving Power Plan: If you are one of those users who prefer to put their system on a power-saving power plan to extend the timing and life of your battery, then you must know that this power plan can make some system components less performing, that can result into the update error under discussion.
  • Corrupt System Files: Your system’s files might have become corrupt due to a recently suffered power failure, an update was applied to it, or if the security product of your system has removed some essential system files, and these corrupt system files can cause the failed installation of the update.
  • Corrupt Windows Update Components: Windows updates store their data locally on your system folders like the Software Distribution and Catroot2 folders before propagating to the relevant system directories. If any of these folders/ components have become corrupt, then your system may fail to install new Windows updates.

Manually Install the 21H1 Update

If any of the essential Windows components used by the Windows Update are corrupt or missing, then installation of automatic Windows updates may fail but manually installing the same update as it uses different directories/services may solve the update error 0x800f0984.

  1. Launch a web browser and steer to the Windows 10 section of Microsoft’s website.
  2. Now, under the latest update assistant (currently, Windows 10 May 2021 Update), click on Update Now and then let the download complete.
    Download Latest Windows Update Assistant by Clicking on Update Now
  3. Afterward, right-click on the downloaded file of the update assistant and select Run as Administrator.
  4. Then follow the prompts to complete the process and once completed, check if the 21H1 error 0x800f0984 is cleared.

If you are encountering the error 0x800f0984 on another update, you may download the same from Microsoft’s Update Catalog website.

Change the Power Plan of Your System

In the Power Saving Mode, the system may favor the battery over performance, resulting in the low performance of many essential system services/ resources. This low performance of the services/ resources can hamper the way Windows Update works leading to the error at hand. The same can be rectified by changing the PC’s Power Plan to high performance.

  1. Right-click Windows and select Power Options.
    Open Power Options from the Quick Access Menu
  2. Now click the on Additional Power Options link in the right pane and in the new Power Options window shown, click on Create a Power Plan.
    Open Additional Power Settings
  3. Then select High Performance and click on Next (you may enter the Power Plan name as per your likings).
    Create a Power Plan
  4. Now click Create; if you want to change any of the options, you may, but it will be better to use the default options. Once the new Power Plan is applied, retry the update to check if it can be installed without error 0x800f0984.
    Create a New High-Performance Power Plan

Run DISM and SFC Scans on Your System

Many factors can lead to the corruption of essential system files like previously applied system updates, an essential system file marked as a threat by the antivirus of your PC, etc. If the essential system files are corrupt, it may lead to the error 0x800f0984. In this case, executing the DISM/ SFC scans may clear the files’ corruption, which may solve the problem.

  1. Click Windows, key-in CMD, and in the results shown, right-click Command Prompt.
    Open Command Prompt as Administrator
  2. Now select Run as Administrator and then execute the following:
    Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
    Use the DISM Command to RestoreHealth
  3. This can take around 20-30 minutes to complete and once completed, execute the following. This may take time to complete the execution, so try it when the system can be spared for an extended time like overnight.
    sfc /scannow
    Perform an SFC Scan
  4. Once completed, check if the 21H1 update can be installed without error 0x800f0984.

Reset the Windows Update Components of Your System to the Defaults

You may fail to update to the Windows 10 version 21H1 with error 0x800f0984 if the Windows Update components of your system are corrupt as these components are essential for the proper execution and installation of the Windows updates. In this context, resetting the Windows Update components of your system to the defaults may solve the update issue.

  1. Right-click Windows and select PowerShell (Admin).
  2. Now execute the following by copy-pasting cmdlets one by one (hit the Enter key after pasting each cmdlet) to the PowerShell window (ignore any error message by the PowerShell):
    net stop bits
    net stop wuauserv
    net stop appidsvc
    net stop cryptsvc
    Del "%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Downloader\*.*"
    rmdir %systemroot%\SoftwareDistribution /S /Q
    rmdir %systemroot%\system32\catroot2 /S /Q
    regsvr32.exe /s atl.dll
    regsvr32.exe /s urlmon.dll
    regsvr32.exe /s mshtml.dll
    netsh winsock reset
    netsh winsock reset proxy
    net start bits
    net start wuauserv
    net start appidsvc
    net start cryptsvc
  3. Then exit the PowerShell window and restart your device.
  4. Upon restart, check if you can install the 21H1 update without triggering the error 0x800f0984.

Perform an In-Place Upgrade of Your PC’s Windows

If none of the solutions did the trick for you, then performing an in-place upgrade of your PC’s Windows which reinstalls the OS of your system may solve the problem. Before proceeding, it will be better to create a system restore point (to be safe, just in case) and back up the essential files.

  1. Launch a web browser and head to Microsoft’s website for Windows 10.
  2. Now scroll down a bit and then click on the Download Tool Now button (in the section of Create Windows 10 Installation Media).
    Download the Media Creation Tool from the Microsoft Website
  3. Once the tool is downloaded, launch it as administrator and accept the license terms.
    Launch the Media Creation Tool as Administrator
  4. Then select Upgrade This PC Now and afterward, select Keep Windows Settings, Personal Files, and Apps.
    Select Upgrade This PC Now
  5. Now follow the prompts till the upgrade process is complete and then check if the update error 0x800f0984 is cleared.
    Keep Windows Settings, Personal Files, and Apps

If that did not work, then create a bootable USB with Windows 10 ISO and use that device to upgrade the PC’s Windows.

If that fails, then you may download/ mount the ISO image of Windows 10 and use it to run the following DISM command in PowerShell (Admin):

dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth /source:wim:F:\sources\install.wim:5 /limitaccess

Where F is the driver letter of the mounted ISO and 5 is for the Windows Pro edition (you may change these two as per your system). You may replace Install.wim with Install.esd if the ISO file is created with Microsoft’s media creation tool. Once the DISM command has been executed, hopefully, your system will be cleared of error 0x800f0984.

If everything else fails, then you may have to perform the cumbersome task of clean installing the PC’s Windows to solve the error 0x800f0984.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.
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Methods to Fix Windows Update Error 0x800f0984 for Version 21H1

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