Windows SUR Tool

January 5, 2009 at 12:37 am Leave a comment

I had to do a restore from the recovery partition on a Vista laptop. Once the process completed I went to do Windows Updates, but the process failed with a 0x80073712 error code. Google showed me the way to Microsoft KB article 947821 which introduced me to the System Update Readiness Tool. The tool tries to fix things that can cause Updates to fail. I ran the tool and then checked the logs in c:\windows\logs\cbs\

The logs told me I had four zero-length manifest files. More Googling showed that for most people, removing the zero byte manifest files fixed Windows Update. Of course the files are protected and can’t be deleted as-is. You have to take ownership of them and assign Full Control rights to your user before you can delete them. The quick way is to install this tool, which adds ‘Take Ownership’ to the right-click menu. Since this was a client’s PC, I decided to go old school and use the command line. Here’s a link to a site with a good explanation of the process.

Once I deleted the offending four files Windows Updates worked.


Entry filed under: Software, Tech Adventures.

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