Windows Legacy OS forum

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Windows Update.exe File Missing

by cnetbarmcm / August 30, 2006 2:00 AM PDT

When I try to install the Security Updates from Windows Update, I get failed beside everyone of them. My "Automatic Updates" screen is greyed out as well. I cannot turn it on. I have tried to fix it using solutions on sites such as yours but with no success.

I was told to run sfc /scannow and when I ran it it said "Files that are required for Windows to run properly must be copied to the DLL cache. Insert your Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 2 CD now". I ordered it from Microsoft and re-ran sfc /scannow.
When I put the CD in it says "The CD you provided is the wrong CD. Please insert the Windows Home Edition Service Pack 2 CD into your CD ROM.
It gave me the option of re-installing SP 2 which I tried to do but it says "Installing SP2 - extracting files to Directory : a4b65e1392a70866a3353672df" then "Can't find file I386/update/update.exe"

Is it possible that I am missing this file and that is why the Security Updates are failing and my Automatic Updates screen is greyed out? I can't run "regedit.exe" either so it may be missing.
Do I have to go back to where I bought the computer and get the Operating System re-installed or do you knoe of some other solution.

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

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This sounds like one of those stories.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2006 2:06 AM PDT

There are less than honest storefronts that install the XP OS (for free?) and don't give the owner the CD, the CD-KEY and COA (Certificate Of Authenticity).

Your comment about returning to the store and auto updates is telling. These installs often disable autoupdate because the checks from microsoft will show the OS is pirated.


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To Add to Bob's Post...........
by Trance_Zac / August 30, 2006 2:36 AM PDT

Sounds like you got burned. At this point, you'll need to buy a copy of XP & either do a Repair Install, or preferably a clean install (start over)

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Hopefully helpful.
by TahoeGeek / August 30, 2006 2:47 AM PDT


It is a possibility that you have an illigal copy of XP.

It is also possible that, when XP was installed, the CD didn't include SP2 requiring it to be loaded from the Internet and since then the install files have been removed. I personally use a CD that only includes SP1 and have used it to re-install (legally) on many computers such as Dell and HP as I don't like reinstalling the propiganda that comes on there CD's.

Now for some ideas about the sollution.

It is possible that the SP2 you are trying to use is corrupt. This could be caused by a just a bad download or a virus or spyware on your computer. Maybe try to redownload it on another computer and put it on CD. You can download SP2 in one file at:

Please note that this download is coming from Microsoft and not a site that may have added something harmful to the file. (As if Windows isn't harmful enough.)

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Helpful but not a solution
by cnetbarmcm / August 30, 2006 3:16 AM PDT
In reply to: Hopefully helpful.

I didn't buy a hot machine with hot software.
I bought the PC at Futureshop 2 years ago and everything was fine until around 2 months ago. I have had some viruses but they (as far as I know) are all cleaned up so they could have done this. I had downloaded SP2 from the Microsoft download site prior to the problems.
My problem is that Windows Automatic Update is greyed out and every update from Microsoft says failed.
When I did the sfc /scannow with the SP2 CD from Microsoft it states that "update.exe" is missing etc.
I think "regedit.exe" is missing as well because I can't run that either.
Is this why the updates from Microsoft aren't working?
If so, how do I get the missing files back on to my PC
Thanks again for your help.

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Questions and one more thing.
by TahoeGeek / August 30, 2006 3:48 AM PDT

Hello again,

I am wondering if you can see your device manager. If you right click on "My Computer" and then left on "Properties" and then the tab for "Hardware" then the "Device Manager" button. Do they seem normal? I remember a rather nasty virus a few months back that may cause these problems (I remember not having regedit). But, I found it because I didn't get any devices to show up.

Here's a link to a Microsoft support page that may help. I have found that sometimes trying to follow there help something different shows up and that leads me to the sollution.

It will give you a different way to open your Updates configuration.

BTW, I didn't think that your XP was hot as when I have seen illigal copies installed and tried to do updates the screen I got was very explicit as to the copy being pirited.

Have you tried re-installing SP2 from the CD? Just running the executable file and let it re-install. I have seen network problem resolved by this. I just don't think that regedit is in the update.

Have you tried running a program like Spybot? It is a free download at and actually does do a pretty good job at times.

I know that this is very frustrating and I would encourage you to read these posts something like you would shop for a new shirt. If it looks good, try it on. If it doesn't fit or work for you, put it back and look for another until you find the one that is perfect for you.

Good luck.

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Line 179 at link.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2006 3:53 AM PDT
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