The first thing you’ll probably want to do is gather up any relevant information and log files so that you’ll have them handy when you speak with a Support Engineer for the first time. The exact data we’ll request can vary depending on the issue, so for the sake of this document we’ll err on the side of gathering too much data rather than too little.
If you wish to send any of this data to the support engineer handling your case, please address any email to email@example.com. The files must be in .ZIP format, and the Subject line must include your case number. An example of proper case number formatting is: REG: 133322255555599. The REG: must be included.
In almost all cases we’ll ask for the Application event log from the server. The WSUS health monitoring service automatically checks the health of WSUS components as long as WSUS server components are installed on the computer and the following WSUS components are checked for potential problems:
- Core: Issues with disk space, permissions, e-mail notifications, and catalog and content synchronization
- Database: Issues with connectivity and availability
- Web Services: Issues with permissions and Web service health
- Clients: Issues with clients not reporting, client self-update, the update agent, client inventory, and clients’ ability to install updates
The events generated by the health monitoring service are logged in the Application event log so chances are good we’ll ask for this.
Beyond the Application event log, the other files we’ll likely request will be determined by the exact issue you’re experiencing. Some of the more common areas are listed below:
WSUS setup creates the following four log files that can help you diagnose problems with setup. These log files are located in the %temp% directory of the user who ran the installation process.
WSUSSetup.log: The status of each of the component installations performed during WSUS setup is logged to this file. You can check this log to see whether any of the component installations failed. If you see a failure, you can check the corresponding log to see what went wrong during the installation of that component.
WSUSSetupMsi_timestamp.log: This log file is generated by MSI for WSUS component setup. Windows installer, before invoking any of the custom actions and standard actions, logs that information to this file. The return values from the custom actions are logged to this file as well. This log file is useful if there are errors invoking any of the custom actions.
WSUSCa_timestamp.log: This log file is used by custom actions. Errors that occurred while executing any of the custom actions in WSUS component or BITS setup are logged to this file.
WSUSWyukonSetup_timestamp.log: This is the log file for Windows Internal Database setup. All Windows Internal Database installation/uninstallation information is logged to this file.
Check the %windir%\WindowsUpdate.log on the client computer to see if there has been any activity or any attempts to contact the server, such as cached server pingbacks.
See KB902093 for information on how to read and troubleshoot using the Windowsupdate.log file.
A Quick Client Update Fix
If you’re having client related issues, the first thing to try is our Fix It that will automatically repair most common WSUS client issues with a simple click of the mouse. For information on this visit:
If the link above doesn’t do the trick, if you’re seeing issues with clients updating then we’ll probably need to obtain the IIS logs on the WSUS server. IIS logs are typically located in %windir%\system32\LogFiles\W3SVC1 for the default Web site. Typical errors might be 404 (file not found) 401/403 (authentication/access), and 500 (Internal server error).
Checking for Known Issues
When you’re troubleshooting a problem with WSUS, chances are pretty good that you’re not the first person to encounter your particular issue. With that in mind, the next thing you’ll want to do is a quick search of our Knowledge Base, our blog sites and our forums to see if anyone has already posted the resolution:
- Search the Microsoft Knowledge Base for WSUS KB articles
- Search the WSUS Support Team blog
- Search the WSUS Product Team blog
- Search one of the various public WSUS forums and newsgroups or ask a question of your own. The one linked here is not one of our official forums but seems to be pretty popular.
If you’re getting an error message, include parts of the exact error text in your search. The exact error message is incredibly important so don’t summarize it when searching or asking for help. Including the exact error message can mean the difference between quickly finding your answer and searching in vain.
Prerequisites and Troubleshooting
Still can’t find anything on your issue? If that’s the case then the next step is to check the prerequisites and troubleshooting information for the particular version of WSUS you’re using.
- What’s New in This Release (includes Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 support)
- System Requirements for the WSUS 3.0 SP2 Server Installation
- Configuration Prerequisites and Best Practice Recommendations for the WSUS Server
- Windows Small Business Server Prerequisites
- System Requirements for the WSUS 3.0 SP2 Remote Console Installation
- System Requirements for Client Installation
- Upgrade Requirements and Recommendations
- Installing WSUS 3.0 SP2
- Setup Command-line Parameters for Unattended WSUS 3.0 SP2 Installations
- Known Issues
- System requirements for WSUS 3.0 SP1 server installation
- Configuration requirements for WSUS 3.0 SP1 server installation
- System requirements for WSUS 3.0 SP1 remote console installation
- System requirements for client installation
- Software requirements for WSUS SP1 server installation
- Minimum disk-space requirements for WSUS 3.0 SP1 server installation
- WSUS 3.0 SP1 upgrade requirements
- Setup command-line parameters
- Setup issues
- Upgrade issues
- Known issues
- WSUS 3.0 SP1 on Windows Server® 2008
- WSUS 3.0 SP1 on Windows Small Business Server 2003
- System requirements for WSUS 3.0 server installation
- Configuration requirements for WSUS 3.0 server installation
- System requirements for WSUS 3.0 remote console installation
- Configuration requirements for WSUS 3.0 remote consoles
- System requirements for client installation
- Software requirements for WSUS 3.0 server installation
- Minimum disk space requirements for WSUS 3.0 server installation
- WSUS 3.0 upgrade requirements
- Setup command-line parameters
- Setup and upgrade issues
- Known issues
- WSUS 3.0 on Windows Server® 2008
- WSUS 3.0 on Windows Small Business Server 2003
906602: How to troubleshoot common Windows Update, Microsoft Update, and Windows Server Update Services installation issues.
910341: You receive error 0x80240020 when you use Windows Update Web site, Microsoft Update Web site, or WSUS to install updates.
Note: The article above describes how to troubleshoot error messages that you may receive when you try to download updates from the Microsoft Windows Update Web site, from the Microsoft Update Web site, or from a Microsoft Windows Server Updates Services (WSUS) server.
922709: Support WebCast: Tips and tricks for troubleshooting Windows Server Update Services
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Setup
- Issues with Upgrades
- Troubleshooting and known issues with the Admin Console
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Update Storage. This includes downloads failing, disk cleanup and space issues and moving the DB.
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Synchronization
- Known issues with Approvals
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Backup and Restore
- Troubleshooting and known issues with E-Mail Notifications
- Issues with the Database
- Issues with WSUS 3.0 Services, including IIS and SQL
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Client Computer Groups
- Troubleshooting and known issues with Update Installation on Clients
- Troubleshooting the Automatic Update client
- Troubleshooting ‘clients not reporting’ and client connectivity issues
- Troubleshooting issues with Client Self-Update
- How to manage WSUS 3.0 from the command line
- Unattended Installations
- Configuring Remote SQL
- Configuring WSUS for Network Load Balancing
- Configuring WSUS for Roaming Clients
- Detecting the Version of WSUS
- Uninstalling Windows Internal Database
- Uninstalling WSUS 3.0 from SQL Server
- Configuring BITS 2.0 and 3.0 for Download Performance
- Configuring IIS for Download Performance
- Using the wuauclt Utility
- Database Maintenance
Other Things You Should Know
- The list of Security Settings
- Prerequisites Schema
- IIS Settings for Web Services
- Permissions on WSUS Directories and Registry Keys
- Windows Update Agent Result Codes
- Need to open a support incident? Click here.
- Microsoft Windows Server Update Services 3.0 Overview
- Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Started with Microsoft Windows Server Update Services
- Microsoft Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP1 Operations Guide
- Deploying Microsoft Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP1
- Webcasts, Virtual Labs, Certification opportunities, TechNet events and other learning opportunities
- The latest WSUS downloads
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Note: This page last updated 10/21/2009