[German]A blog reader recently informed me about an observation he made during updating Windows Server 2012 (not R2). Maybe someone has observed that behavior and know a solution. Addendum: Solutions are known.
German blog reader Alexander H. sent me the relevant information by e-mail. Alexander wrote within his e-mails:
I’m responsible for the patch management and I noticed recently something very exciting on Windows Server 2012 Standard systems today.
Like every month I installed the patches at our customers and restart the systems. Several Windows Server 2012 Standard the updates is shown with the status “Pending restart” after restarting the servers during in the update process (see following screen shot).
Another phenomenon is that the updates on several systems I updated yesterday showed the status “Succeeded”! The Windows updates were still available for installation.
In “WindowsUpdate.log” there are no errors, the Windows updates are successfully downloaded and installed from the WSUS server, after the restart the behavior appears identical 1:1 again.
Alexander wrote that restarting the WSUS server did not improve the situation. During the troubleshooting he noticed with other Windows Server 2012 standard systems that the systems without update installation problems had not installed the feature “Desktop Experience”.
Desktop Experience involved?
For this reason, he removed the Desktop Experience feature from a system before installing the update, restarted it, and then installed Windows Updates. After the restart, the Windows Updates were installed correctly.
According to these findings, he tried to repair the machines with the pending updates’ by removing the Desktop Experience feature, but had an unpleasant experience. He wrote:
Afterwards I wanted to remove this feature on the problematic systems with the status “Pending Restart” and test whether this helps – unfortunately now the error “An unexpected error has occurred” appears.
Maybe one of the blog readers is aware of a solution to these problems. From 2017 I found this thread which deals with a similar problem.
A possible fix: Change some services
Addendum: Within my German blog post a blog reader proposed the following fix that helped on his machines:
my solution (I cused it several times):
- Goto Services and change “Windows Modules Installer” (TrustedInstaller) status from manual to automatic.
- Then start the Service (this service turns back to manual again after the reboot )
- Ihad not tested, if it’s necessary: Start also the service “Windows Installer” (msiserver)
Afterward just restart the Windows Server instance and the pending restart status should be gone.
Hope this will help those affected. But note a warning from another German user, who wrote, that the an immediate restart is mandatory. They had a server which tried 10 minutes after changing the service status a reboot. Since that the server is in a reboot loop – and the current case is nasty, because it’s a remote server. One user also wrote, that the needed several reboots (each for each pending update) to bring the machine back to life.