Sunday, January 11, 2009

KB957000 fails to update with an error code of 8000FFFF

Since the new year, my Dell 1520 laptop was unable to run Windows Update and it used to fail with an error code of 8000FFFF on update KB957000.

Installation status: Failed
Error details: Code 8000FFFF
Update type: Important Fix for KB957000
More information:

"Update for Windows (KB957000)" could not be installed because of an error: 2147549183 "Catastrophic failure"

One reason that this error might be occurring on the computer is that the following values might exist on your computer.

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\COMPONENTS\AdvancedInstallersNeedResolving


This is a known issue and Microsoft has a quick fix for it.

Fix it

Or if you would like to get your hands dirty – then just open the registry and delete the 3 registry values described above (but before you do – remember to backup the registry).

Here are the details from Microsoft’s site:

  1. Click Start
  2. In the Start Search box, type regedit.
  3. In the Programs list, click Regedit.exe.

    If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or click Continue.

  4. Find and then click the following registry subkey:


  5. Right-click COMPONENTS.
  6. Click Export. (Important – as it can save you – in case things go bad after this)
  7. In the File Name box of the Export Registry File dialog box, type COMPONENTS.
  8. Click Save, and then click COMPONENTS.
  9. In the details pane, right-click PendingXmldentifier, and then click Delete. If this value does not exist, go to the next step.
  10. In the details pane, right-click NextQueueEntryIndex, and then click Delete. If this value does not exist, go to the next step.
  11. In the details pane, right-click AdvancedInstallersNeedResolving, and then click Delete. If this value does not exist, go to the next step.
  12. Restart the computer, and then try again to update the computer.


  • Remember to save the component hive of the registry. This is your insurance policy.
  • You might have to restart and run Windows Update multiple times. It took me 3 restarts, before all the updates managed to get installed and the error message would finally go away.
  • I also had to turn off the Customer Experience Improvement Program for the changes to take effect.
    Start –> Control Panel –> Problem Reports and Solutions
    Customer Experience Improvement settings (left hand side bottom) and turn it off.

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