About the “Windows Update error 80072EFD” error

The following information on this error has been compiled by ByeError, based on the information gathered and reported by our global network of engineers, developers, and technicians or partner organizations.

Description and Symptoms

When you try to use Windows Update or update Windows Defender to check for and install updates, you may receive one of the following error messages:

Windows Update

Windows could not search for new updates

An error occurred while checking for new updates for your computer.


Error(s) found:

Code 80072EFD        Windows Update encountered an unknown error.
                     Get help with this error

Most recent check for updates:    09/17/2018 at 8:08 AM
Updates were installed:           04/14/2018 at 4:11 AM.  View update history
You receive updates:              For Windows and other products from Microsoft Update

Get updates for other Microsoft products. Find out more
If you receive the error 80072efd, it usually means that a program running on your computer is preventing Windows Update Services (SVCHOST) from accessing the Internet. Programs that might do this include firewalls, anti-spyware software, web accelerators, Internet security or antivirus programs, and proxy servers.

Causes of this Error

This error has been known to occur as a result of one or more of the following:

Cause 1: A connection interruption between your PC and the Windows Update service

Cause 2: A third-party firewall that is blocking the relevant update ports

Cause 3: A infection by a virus or malicious software can interfere with the Windows Update process

Fixing “Windows Update error 80072EFD” on Windows

Here are a few methods you can try to resolve this problem.
Fix #1: Restart Windows Update Service and Run the Internet Connections troubleshooter
  1. Open the Start menu and type services.msc.
  2. Right mouse on services and run as administrator.
  3. Stop the Windows Update service.
  4. Move the folder C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution to the desktop.
  5. Restart the Windows Update service.
  6. Retry windows update as you normally do.
If the error still exits, try to run the Internet Connections troubleshooter. Windows provides a built-in troubleshooter that can automatically find and fix some common problems with Windows Update.
  1. Click the Start button, and click Control Panel.
  2. In the search box, type troubleshooter, and click Troubleshooting.
  3. Under System and Security, click Fix problems with Windows Update.
Fix #2: Turn off windows firewall
The error also can be caused by a firewall which is blocking the connection to the Update website, incorrect IP address, proxy settings, or a conflict with the antivirus program you are using. Try to turn off the firewall and check if the error is fixed.
  1. Click WinKey + R, type Firewall.cpl, and press OK.
  2. Select Turn Windows Firewall On or Off option, and open Private Network Settings.
  3. Select Turn off Windows firewall (not recommended).
  4. Then go back to the previous window and select Public Network Settings.
  5. Select Turn off Windows firewall (not recommended) and click OK.
If you still receive the error message click on Internet Explorer to open the browser window and then choose Tools from the main toolbar. Click on Internet Options on the drop down menu and then choose Connections. Click on the Local Area Network Settings and then choose Advanced and locate Exceptions and enter:
windowsupdate.microsoft.com;
v4.windowsupdate.microsoft.com; 
download.windowsupdate.com.
When you are finished, click OK. Try to access the Update website again.
Fix #3: Temporarily disable security software and check
In some cases, infection by a virus or malicious software can interfere with the Windows Update process.
  1. Click WinKey + X to open the menu.
  2. Select your anti-virus software and click Disable. That will remove the anti-virus utility from the system startup.
  3. Restart Windows and then try installing the required update.
Note: Antivirus software can help protect your computer against viruses and other security threats. In most cases, you should not disable your antivirus software. If you do have to temporarily disable it to install other software, you should re-enable it as soon as you’re done. If you are connected to the Internet or a network during the time your antivirus software is disabled, your computer is vulnerable to attacks.
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