Have you tried setting it to automatic to see if that makes a difference? I haven't used Xp for years, so I can't remember, but it seems like there was a Explorer window that gave you options when an update came up and it automatically found it.
I use an hp pavilion desktop with xp/os. I get my windows updates manually and have had no problems doing so for yrs. Today,using IE browser, I went to windows update site and clicked to do a custom update which started in usual manner with a 'scan to check for updates,then suddenly popped up an error window with the following error number: Error number: 0x80072EFD
I have tried all microsoft troubleshooting tips with no result so can not get high security updates. Any suggestions most appreciated.