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Windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe – How to fix

by | Jan 21, 2021

Stuck with “Windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe” during your windows update?

The Windows update error 80072efe is a general error often encountered while updating the Windows operating system.

This error can occur while starting or shutting down the server during OS reinstallation. It can also occur while updating an application on the server, or while installing Microsoft-related software.

Here at Bobcares, we often fix similar errors for our customers as a part of our Server Management Services.

Today, let’s see how our Support Engineers fix this Cloudflare error for our customers.

How to fix ‘Windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe’

A typical ‘Windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe’ looks like the one given below:

windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe

Some of the main causes for this error include poor internet connection, downloads did while system update is in progress, malware infections, corrupt Windows registry files, junk files piling up, and outdated system drivers.

Methods to fix this error is given below:

This error can be fixed using different methods but we have to understand the root cause and apply the right fix to it. Some of the methods our Support Engineers follow are given below:

1. Troubleshoot Windows Update

The following steps will help to Troubleshoot Windows Update:

  1. First, take the Control Panel.
  2. And search for Troubleshooting.
  3. Then click View All.
  4. Click Windows Update at the bottom.
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen and then try to update Windows again.
2. Remove Junk Files

Sometimes junk files may pile up and create internal conflicts and overload the hard disk.

Steps to remove junk files are given below:

  1. Open the command prompt and run as Administrator.
  2. Type the following command and press enter.

The tool will check the files present in the hard disk and will prompt to remove unnecessary files including the temporary files box. We can click ‘OK’ and remove all the junk files.

3. Update System Drivers

Damaged/outdated system drivers can be one of the reasons for ‘windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe’.

Steps to follow are given below:

  1. First, go to My Computer and select Properties.
  2. And select Device Manager.
  3. Check if any Driver updates are available and update them.
  4. Once the update is complete we can reboot the server.

[Still, facing error 80072efe? We are happy to help you!]

4. Run System File Checker

Usually, running the built-in system File Checker will scan and attempt to repair corrupt files and thus fix the error.

  1. First, open a terminal.
  2. And type “chkdsk/f/r”, press Enter.
  3. Give “Y” to continue.

Restart the computer to allow the disk check to run, this will be a bit time-consuming.

5. Delete CatRoot2 Folder to fix code 80072EFE

To fix the error, we can delete the specific folder ‘CatRoot2’

Steps to follow are given below:

  1. Search for Services and scroll down to click Cryptographic Services
  2. Now take the General tab in the Cryptographic Services Properties window.
  3. And click the Stop button to disable Services.
  4. Next, go to “C:\Windows\System32\” folder and locate the CatRoot2 folder and delete it.
  5. After that re-start Cryptographic Services.
6. System Restore

Restoring the computer is only done if all the above methods fail to fi the error.

  1. First, go to Settings and choose Recovery.
  2. Then select System Restore.
  3. Choose an earlier date when the computer worked without any issues.

[Still, stuck with the error? – We can help you]



To conclude, we saw various methods that our Support Engineers follow to fix the windows update encountered an unknown error 80072efe.


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Our server experts will monitor & maintain your server 24/7 so that it remains lightning fast and secure.


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