Updating your computer
Chances are the updates are hung before the 3-hour mark, but this is a reasonable amount of time to wait and longer than I've ever seen a Windows update take to successfully install.Sometimes however, when the patch, or maybe even service pack, is being installed during shutdown or startup, the update installation gets stuck - freezes, locks up, stops, hangs, clocks, whatever you want to call it. There might be some wording differences too depending on which version of Windows you're using.If you don't see anything at all on screen, especially if you think the updates may have been installed completely, see my How To Fix Problems Caused by Windows Updates tutorial instead.Most of the time, Windows Update does its job with little attention from us.While we might check and install updates manually from time to time, most Windows 10 computers are configured to apply important updates automatically while older versions usually apply these fixes the night of Patch Tuesday.
Much more rarely they're caused by a mistake on Microsoft's part regarding the update itself.Any of Microsoft's operating systems could experience freezing issues during Windows updates including Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and more.There are several reasons why the installation or finalization of one or more Windows updates can hang.Most often, these types of problems are due to a software conflict or a preexisting issue that simply wasn't brought to light until the Windows updates started installing.
Note: There's an actual issue with Windows that can cause Windows Update installations to freeze like this but it's only applicable to Windows Vista and only if SP1 hasn't yet been installed.
If your computer fits that description, install Windows Vista SP1 or later or this update to solve the problem.