Windows 7 update scans taking forever? KB 3153199 may solve the problem

Users are again hit by massive Win7/Vista update scan delays, but installing a completely unrelated patch seems to help

Windows 7 update scans taking forever? KB 3153199 may solve the problem
Credit: Tim via Flickr

Last month I described how Windows 7 update scans had slowed -- some users found that scans were taking many hours -- but amazingly returned to normal by manually installing two completely unrelated patches, KB 3138612 and KB 3145739. This month, many people are complaining the problem has cropped up again. But there's a related, completely bizarre fix that seems to solve the problem.

Poster EP on came up with the solution:

Sad to say this Tuesday May 10, 1pm pacific time, doing a recent Windows Update scan on a Win7 SP1 system has resulted in a seemingly long or "forever" scan.  So the KB 3145739 security fix as well as the older KB 3139852 fix no longer works as of 5/10/2016 (yup, I knew it -- I saw it coming!)

There is a newer win32k.sys security update posted on May 10 -- KB 3153199 (MS16-062)

While KB 3153199 only updates the win32k.sys file (and does not supersede KB 3145739 but DOES supersede KB 3139852), I will manually download & install the KB3153199 security fix on my Win7 machines to resolve the very long WU scan problem.

KB 3153199/MS16-062 is this month's security update for kernel-mode drivers, which seems to be a recurring theme: We're seeing a lot of kernel patches lately. We had an earlier kernel mode fix just only months ago, MS16-034/KB 3143145.

KB 3153199 is not a do-or-die patch, as anyone trying to crack your system with this particular security hole would have to log on to your computer first. 

The response so far has been generally positive, although some folks say the fix didn't work for them. Several report the Windows 7 (and Vista) Update scan went from many hours to minutes.

It's easy to check whether you have KB 3153199 installed: Click Start > Control Panel > System and Security > View installed updates. Click on Name to sort all the little hummers by name. Look under the heading Microsoft Windows for "Security Update for Microsoft Windows (KB3153199)." If it's there, you're already in the fast track and your update scans should take minutes instead of days.

If it isn't there, you can download and install the individual patch by using IE (or Edge) to go to the 32-bit download page or 64-bit download page.

Tip o' the Baker Street Irregulars hat to EP.

From CIO: 8 Free Online Courses to Grow Your Tech Skills