If you are running Windows 7 on your PC, you might have already got a notification from Microsoft about the end of support for the operating system. After a decade in business, helping users thwart Vista and Windows 8, Windows 7 has reached its shelf life.
Enterprise users of the OS can pay extra to get security upgrades for three more years past the deadline on January 14, 2020. If you are just a Home user, it’s probably time to upgrade to Windows 10, the so-called “last version” of Windows OS. Microsoft plans on offering updates to Windows 10 in the coming years, instead of releasing a new OS every couple of years or so.
Windows 10 is here to stay. So if you want to remain a Windows user, you would have to make the switch no matter what. The latest Microsoft OS has some interesting features, but it has also been chided for many bugs. Installing Windows 10 might not be as smooth as you think it is.
It’s easy enough to download the installation file. Go to the official Microsoft website, buy Windows 10, and then download the ISO file. You can instantly upgrade the existing computer to Windows 10, or save the installation package in a disk for a later date.
The actual upgrade process may incur unexpected errors. Therefore, you need to back up everything that you care for before the upgrade actually begins. Afterward, read below for a list of errors you could potentially run into, and how to solve them:
Microsoft-Recommended Quick Fixes
For those who have been long-term Microsoft users, we know that sometimes complex bugs have simple solutions. Before you panic about an error, you might want to try any of the general fixes below, as recommended by Microsoft. Doing the following before an upgrade would minimize the risk of an installation error as well:
Check the C: Drive
The C: drive usually contains the system. If your computer is partitioned, find out which drive contains the system.
Repairing the system drive before the upgrade can prevent certain errors. To repair, run the Command Prompt as the administrator (right click on the command prompt to do this). When the DOS window shows up, type in “chkdsk /F” (with space) and hit enter.
This schedules a system checkup next time your computer reboots. Enter Y enable it. Now restart the computer. The boot up would automatically check the system for errors.
Some errors will be automatically fixed with troubleshooting. For others, you may have to find IT help to fix.
Repair Possibly Corrupt System Files
The Check Disk features explained above checks the C: drive for errors. You can also check individual system files for errors. Just follow the codes below.
Open Command Prompt as administrator. On the new Window, type sfc /scannow and enter.
The copy this command: C:\>sfc /scannow.
The system scan would now begin. Wait until it reaches 100 percent verification
If Windows Resource Protection doesn’t find any integrity violations, you are good to go. If the program does detect corrupt files, you may need to format the system before upgrading.
This is definitely one of the easiest things to neglect. Before you upgrade to 10, make sure you are running the latest version of Windows 7. Get any security updates and patches before moving to the Windows 10 upgrade.
Go to Update Windows (search on the start menu) for the OS automatically detect and download new updates.
Use Windows Update Troubleshooter
Windows Update Troubleshooter is a tool from Microsoft that can automatically detect and fix problems with Windows Update. You should use this in case a downloaded updated file is messing up with reboot and preventing the newer upgrade to Windows 10.
This troubleshooter is not preinstalled on Windows 7. Go to Microsoft’s website and download it for free.
Uninstall Antivirus Programs
Third-party antivirus or malware protection programs have overarching scanning tools that would most likely interfere with the upgrade. Therefore, Microsoft recommends uninstalling all such software. But keep Windows Defender. It should keep your PC safe during the upgrade process.
Go to Control Panel and Programs to uninstall the antivirus programs you have installed from non-Microsoft sources.
Undock External Hardware
Just how many gadgets do we keep connected to our PCs? Headphones, printers, game accessories, USB sticks, cameras, and so on. These programs often have drivers installed on the computer as well. As a result, during the upgrade, compatibility issues can cause serious problems. To be on the safe side, Microsoft instructs users to disconnect all non-essential hardware connected to the computer.
You might want to remove the keyboard and the mouse unless you are using a desktop. And don’t forget to safely eject synched gadgets, like smartphones or Bluetooth speakers. If you are using a portable backup drive, disconnect it after backing up all your files.
The above fixes are more like preventative methods to avoid potential upgrade issues. For error-specific problems, refer to the section below.
Solving Specific Error Code Issues
When you start upgrading from Windows 7 to 10, you may receive specific error codes. Do note that there are over a dozen error codes that can occur. Fixing most of these require professional IT help. But here are some error codes you might be able to fix yourself:
An important system file necessary to upgrade windows is missing or damaged if this error code is flashing. You may need to repair system files from the Command Prompt as described in the previous section.
0xC1900200 – 0x20008 or 0xC1900202 – 0x20008
These error codes come up when your current PC doesn’t meet the minimum hardware requirements to run Windows 10. This is likely to occur if your computer is older than 5 years. Here are the minimum requirements for Windows 10 from Microsoft:
- Processor: 1 GHz or faster or System on a Chip (SoC)
- RAM: 1 GB for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit
- Hard drive space: 16 GB for 32-bit or 32 GB for 64-bit
- Graphics card: DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
- Display: 800 x 600
- Internet Connection: Needed for some features.
Make sure the computer is internet capable. If your PC doesn’t meet any of the hardware requirements, then you might need to buy a new computer with Windows 10 installed. If you own a desktop, you can build your own computer by upgrading the required parts.
This is another error message you would get when you have hardware that doesn’t meet the minimum specified requirements. Check whether your storage or processor meets the minimum requirements.
0xC1900208 or 0x4000C
This indicates that there’s an app on your PC that’s incompatible with the newer version of Windows 10. It’s preventing the installation from completing. You would have to revert the upgrade process, go to Control Panel, and uninstall any and all apps you suspect might be incompatible with Windows 10. Then restart the upgrade process.
You see this error when there’s software that’s incompatible with Windows 10. You can go back and either uninstall the software or update it to the latest version.
This occurs because a disk cleanup you ran earlier has not completed and is pending. You need to restart your PC and run the upgrade suite once more. If this doesn’t work, re-run Disk Cleanup to remove temporary files. And then start the upgrade again.
Your PC isn’t connecting to the Windows update servers. This is an internet connection problem. You are likely to get this error if you connect to the internet via a VPN. Disable the VPN and try again.
The error indicates that the computer restarted as it was upgrading interrupting installation. Make sure you didn’t accidentally restart the PC. Power outages or power outlet problems might have caused your computer to turn off.
When the system fails to locate a file, it sends this error message. Most likely to occur on PCs with multiple disks. Try removing the extra disks and let Windows upgrade again.
0x80070070 – 0x50011, 0x80070070 – 0x50012, 0x80070070 – 0x60000
You have run out of disk space to install all the necessary files. Delete unnecessary files to free up disk space and start upgrading again.
0xC1900101 0x20017, 0xC1900101 0x30017
Driver failure. Microsoft recommends removing all anti-malware, spyware, or virus programs from the system. Also, disconnect the external hardware that you don’t need.
Remember, if you are unsure of what you are doing, don’t try to fix the error code problems yourself. Contact Microsoft for official help. You can also take your PC to a reputed local repair shop.
More Tips to Avoid Problems
To further elaborate on the above issues, do the following as a way to minimize the risk of a buggy upgrade:
- Make sure the PC has access to uninterrupted internet during the upgrading process. Connect directly to the internet, not via a VPN.
- Update all drivers and firmware on your PC.
- Some of the software on your Windows 7 PC will not be compatible with Windows 10. Therefore, upgrade all software to the most recent versions. Or, uninstall and try reinstalling on Windows 10 again.
- You might be able to avoid system file errors by reformatting your Windows 7 disks. This would remove all your personal files. So make sure these are backed up before you begin.
- When you start disk cleaning, updating, or a similar process, make sure these processes complete before you begin the upgrade.
- If you know any programs that might interfere with the upgrade, uninstall those in advance.
- Before you begin the upgrade, check the disk space to see there’s enough available storage for the installation files.
Windows 10 update errors can occur more frequently on older PCs. Try upgrading at a Microsoft-verified store with help to avoid issues. Remember, if bugs are persistent, it would save you time and money to buy a new computer.