What is Windows Update error 0x800703e6

Also known as ERROR_NOACCESS: Invalid access to memory location, 0x800703e6 has been the main agenda of many Windows users trying to update their system. Specifically, the error occurs whilst attempting to install KB4023057, KB5003214, KB5003173, and other cumulative updates on Windows 10 versions 1903, 1909, 2004, and 20H2. Some users also reported the same problem when installing KB5005033 for the latest Windows 10 version 21H1. Most often, error 0x800703e6 says there is some disfunction in memory processes run on the system. The update process is likely to lock out because two applications are using the same memory location. This can also be followed by problems with registry keys, drivers, system files, and settings ensuring your updates function correctly. To resolve the issue, we recommend approaching each method listed below until you find the one working for you.

Download Windows Repair Tool

Download Windows Repair Tool

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There are special repair utilities for Windows, that can solve problems related to registry corruption, file system malfunction, Windows drivers instability. We recommend you to use Advanced System Repair to fix the “Windows Update Error 0x800703e6” in Windows 10.

1. Launch Windows Update Troubleshooter

The very first option recommended by most is Update Troubleshooter. This in-built feature has been around the Windows world for a long helping users resolve some issues. In most cases, it is no panacea when it comes to solving all errors as there are often some deeper causes leading to update failures. Despite this, it is still worth trying this simple, yet at times effective method to get rid of the problem. Update Troubleshooter will scan out your system for potential problems and try to fix them using automatic algorithms.

  1. Open Settings and navigate to Update & Security > Troubleshoot.
  2. On the right pane, locate Windows Update and click Run the troubleshooter.
  3. Finish the process following the on-screen instructions and restart your PC.

2. Check if system files are missing or damaged

Most update issues can famously happen due to missing or corrupted. Such files may be essential for Windows services to establish mutual communication between various processes. If some of these files are out of their native environment, more likely it will be the reason for update errors. Below, we are going to use both SFC (System File Checker) and DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management), which will detect and restore absent components, if any. Make sure to boot both of these scans in the sequence below. This is how:

SFC

  1. Open Command Prompt by typing cmd into the searching box next to the Start Menu button.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator.
  3. Once the console is opened, type the sfc /scannow command and click Enter.
  4. When the fixing process is done, restart your computer.

DISM

  1. Open Command Prompt as we did in the previous step.
  2. Copy and paste this command DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth.
  3. Click Enter and wait until Windows ends the scanning and fixing.
  4. Once done, restart your PC and install the update again.

After performing both of these scans, attempt to perform the installation of updates again. If this does not work, move down to alternative error solutions below.

3. Scan your hard drive for damaged fragments

Some update-related issues may come due to hard drive corruption. This is why it is always a good idea to check whether such corruption is present. You can do it easily with the help of these steps:

  1. Open Command Prompt just as we did above.
  2. Then, you should paste the chkdsk /f /r C: command and press Enter. If necessary, replace “C” with the letter of your hard drive.
  3. The system will scan for both configuration and physical errors and automatically repair them.

This method is less likely to solve the issue, so do not worry if it did not work out eventually.

4. Clean up unnecessary system files

A number of users reported they capitalized on deleting redundant system files. This method involves wiping out recovery copies and cached files stored by your PC. It may be quite risky, as there will be no way to roll back to the previous version backed up on your system. Despite this, using such a measure helped some users immensely.

  1. Open This PC.
  2. Right-click on your main disk and choose Properties.
  3. Find and click on Disk Cleanup.
  4. Then select Clean up system files, check all the boxes, and click OK.
  5. Once done, restart your PC and try to install the update again.

5. Update drivers

Another reason that could affect updating badly is obsolete or corrupted drivers. We recommend scanning your drivers and update them if necessary. You can do it manually or use a special utility for a faster solution. Both options are discussed below:

  1. Left-click on the Start Menu button and choose Device Manager.
  2. Ideally, you should update all devices available. If there is something marked with a yellow rectangle, this means you should update in the first order.
  3. To do it, right-click on the driver, choose Update, and follow the on-screen instructions.
  4. Let Windows search for new drivers and download them eventually.

Drivers are key to the proper configuration of your system. They are the ones providing a stable connection between hardware and your operating system. Updating a number of drivers manually may take a lot of time rehearsing the same steps. Here you can download the best driver update utility, which will take this task on its own shoulders – Driver Booster from IObit:

Download Driver Booster

6. Run a Clean Bootup

0x800703e6 error may also occur because there are incompatibility issues. Antimalware or any other third-party software may conflict with Windows services causing the error. The Clean bootup feature helps users boot their PC only with in-built apps and services to find out whether some secondary app is being a culprit. To launch in Clean bootup mode, follow these steps below:

  1. Press Windows key + R combination and paste msconfig.
  2. Then in the opened window go to the Services tab located on top.
  3. Check the box next to Hide All Microsoft Services and click on the Disable all button.
  4. Now choose the General tab and select the Selective startup option. Make sure that the box is checked only next to the Load System Services.
  5. Click Apply and OK. Then reboot your PC.

Now you can try to update your system whilst being in Clean Boot mode. No matter whether you failed or succeeded in installing the updates, you should turn Windows back to Normal Startup settings. To do this, simply redo all the steps you implemented above by enabling the disabled services and changing your startup option from Selective to Normal.

7. Reset Windows Update components

Another go-to method whilst trying to solve update-related issues is resetting Windows Update settings. This method specifically has proven itself to be very effective when dealing with update problems. The whole procedure involves restarting BITS, Cryptographic, MSI Installer, and Windows Update services as well as renaming some update folders (SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2). These folders contain temporary files necessary for implementing Windows Updates. Based on this, we will force Windows to delete corrupted elements and create update-related components from scratch. Below, we will show you two ways of getting around this method. The first requires typing and executing each console command in a manual sequence. The other involves a so-called batch script written in Notepad and saved as WUReset.bat. There is no real difference in which one you choose. Although the entire procedure may seem more advanced, it will not take too much time and knowledge. Just follow the steps listed below:

Using manual steps

  1. Open Command Prompt by typing cmd into the searching box next to the Start Menu button.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator.
  3. Copy-paste this list of commands one by one clicking Enter after each. (This action will disable services responsible for Windows Updates)
  4. net stop wuauserv
    net stop cryptSvc
    net stop bits
    net stop msiserver

  5. Then, we have to rename the above-mentioned folders. Simply paste these commands by clicking Enter after each.
  6. ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
    ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 Catroot2.old

  7. Finally, all left to do is to turn the disabled services back. So apply these commands likewise we did previously.
  8. net start wuauserv
    net start cryptSvc
    net start bits
    net start msiserver

  9. Now we are all done with it. Go to the Windows Update center and try to perform the installation again.

Using the Batch Script

This is an alternative method to the above. A batch script is used to execute the same range of commands to reset all Windows Update components, Cryptographic services, and folders like SoftwareDistribution. It is not that hard as you could imagine, but rather easier than the previous one. All you need is a Windows Notepad and a bit of copy-paste magic. Batch scripts hold an upper hand in executing all of the steps at once without typing commands manually. If you ever stumble into similar issues in the future, you can execute the already-created .bat file to reset update components:

  1. Open a new Notepad file. For this, right-click on any free area over your desktop, choose New and Text document.
  2. Then paste this list of commands into your notepad:
  3. @ECHO OFF
    echo Simple Script to Reset / Clear Windows Update
    echo.
    PAUSE
    echo.
    attrib -h -r -s %windir%system32catroot2
    attrib -h -r -s %windir%system32catroot2*.*
    net stop wuauserv
    net stop CryptSvc
    net stop BITS
    ren %windir%system32catroot2 catroot2.old
    ren %windir%SoftwareDistribution sold.old
    ren "%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\Microsoft\Network\Downloader" downloader.old
    net Start BITS
    net start CryptSvc
    net start wuauserv
    echo.
    echo Task completed successfully...
    echo.
    PAUSE

  4. Once pasting is done, click File > Save as and name it WUReset.bat. Make sure to set Encoding to ANSI and save the file to any location you want.
  5. Finally, you can right-click on the file, select Run as administrator and enjoy automatic reset of Windows Updates.

8. Use Media Creation Tool

The last, but very powerful tool to use in case no attempts to stimulate your updates back to work pay off is Media Creation Tool. It is designed to obtain the latest portion of updates available for users struggling to do it with traditional ways. This utility acts as a great alternative to the default Windows Update Center. The update procedure will not touch your personal data but simply upgrade the PC. In order to do it, follow the steps listed below:

  1. At first, you have to download the utility from the Microsoft website.
  2. Then, execute the downloaded file.
  3. After agreeing with the Terms of use, there will be two options to choose from. Select Upgrade this PC now.
  4. Choose to Keep Personal Files to ensure they will be untouched.
  5. Finally, launch the process and wait until it ends.
  6. Hopefully, this method helped you work around the 0x800703e6 error.

Summary

The list of potential solutions to eradicate the 0x800703e6 error has come to end. We hope one of them finally worked and managed to stop it from occurring each time when running some updates. In case you are forced to encounter similar issues again, try to perform the same steps that helped you previously or simply reinstall Windows. Doing so will reborn your system with default settings and files from scratch to put all things back in order.

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