As you may have heard, Windows 10 is supposed to be the last Windows version. Not that Windows is "going away", but they just won't have any new "numbered" releases like Win 11 or Win 12. Instead, the new features come as part of semi-annual updates: fall and spring. Many of these updates are VERY large and take a lot of effort and time to install. They can also "surprise" you when they actually show up. Here is some help in dealing with Windows Update and how to make the process smoother, even if you are not a "techie". You can even do these things in the summer and winter (joking) or anytime when a big update is not pending:
1) The big issue we have seen is "PATIENCE". Big updates take time and do some "strange" things, like blanking your screen for an hour or two. It is NEVER a good idea to interrupt an update bu pulling out the power cord or holding the computer power button. It is risky. Think -- an update half in and half out. Sometimes, the system will recover. Other times, maybe not. If you are doing updates, especially if your disk or other component is not the speediest, be prepared to be patient.
2) Drivers -- especially if you have a laptop/notebook, there may be a lot of hardware in your computer that Microsoft doesn't really have the perfect software for. Become familiar with going to the manufacturer's website (for example, Dell, HP, Lenovo,...) and then to their support page and look for software downloads and, in particular, drivers and firmware for your specific make and model computer as well as for your Win 10 OS (32 bit or 64 bit?). If you have not tried, download the drivers into a folder and make note of the versions and what each driver/firmware is for. Compare what you find with the versions you are running. Find and use the "device manager" on your system to find out driver versions. Some have reported that the Microsoft versions of the drivers are better but others have found that the OEM drivers are better. If you bought your own hardware, you may have to go to the manufacturer website for that hardware to get the best drivers. Practice upgrading drivers and use the device manager if you need to fallback.
3) Periodically, and right before you suspect a big update, run some update related maintenance on your system. See next sections.
4) CHKDSK -- Check disk (CHKDSK) can be run many ways. You can right click on the C: drive (or other drives if you have or use them) and select "properties". Then, under the tools tab, there is "error checking". You can run it there. Or you can try using the admin command prompt to run CHKDSK C: /F but if you do a /? instead of the /F, you see see what all of the options are.
5) The admin command prompt: You will need to do this for some of the items mentioned here. To use this, here is how I get to it.
Right-click on the "start" (Windows symbol) on the task bar. Left-click on Command Prompt (Admin). Answer Yes to any user access control message. At the prompt that looks like, "C:\windows\system32>" you will be able to type in commands such as CHKDSK C: /F
6) To make sure your Windows "Image" is good, you can type at the admin command prompt:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
This takes a while to run. It will clean up your windows image which is important for windows update to run properly.
7) System File Checking -- At the Admin command prompt, type
This will check your system files. Good for making sure your system files are not corrupted and can be updated.
8 ) Defrag -- If you have a regular HDD (as opposed to an SSD), DEFRAG can be run from either the admin command prompt or, it can also be accessed from the tools tab on the drive properties display. If you have an SSD, this tool can be used to perform a TRIM function on the drive.
9) Troubleshooters -- Under the Control Panel there is a troubleshooting section. If you run the "system and security" troubleshooter for Windows Update, that could help clean up any errors. You can also make yourself familiar with other troubleshooters if you ever need them.
10) Finally, under System Settings there is one section for Update & Security. Here, you can review your update history, looking for any problems. If you have Windows 10 Pro, you can postpone updates to give others a chance to test them out before you apply them.
The most important thing you can do for yourself is to find a good backup and restore solution. Don't just copy files from one place to another. You need to find one that you can use to go back to previous editions of files, if necessary. And, finally, something else you can do: at a local community college, you may be able to find some basic computer classes that can teach you more than you can obtain just by reading posts in a forum. They can be fun so you may want to look into them.