Error 0xc1900208 is caused by Windows 10 not having access to the files it needs to provide an update. The solution is to ensure that the system has access to the files it needs.
The error will usually have the following message:
Installation error: Windows was unable to install the following update with error 0xC1900208: Upgrade to Windows 10 Pro.
The reason for the error is due to how Windows updates its software.
To provide an update / upgrade, the system downloads a series of files from the Windows Update servers as a huge “Cabinet” file. This file allows the system to replace files / settings so that it can increase its functionality with a new edition.
The big problem with Windows Update is that if * any * files / settings get damaged or corrupted during the process, the system will not be able to process the files it needs. This is the case here.
The cause of the error 0xC1900208 in particular is that Windows does not have access to the files / settings it needs for the system to work with new updates.
To fix the error, you need to make sure that the Windows update service is working properly and then that you can get the proper files / settings to get the system running smoothly again.
Steps to resolve the issue are to first troubleshoot any issues with the Windows Update Service (which includes using the Windows Update Troubleshooter), as well as then manage any of the subsystems within the system.
The first step is to use the built-in “Windows Update Troubleshooter”, which basically fixes most of the predefined problems that Windows 10 will encounter with particular parts of your system.
- Click the “Start” button (lower left task bar)
- In the “Charms” menu on the left, select the “gear” (for Settings)
- When the “Settings” panel loads, select “Update & Security”
- In the menu on the left, select “Troubleshoot”.
- Click on “Windows Update”
- Follow the steps on screen
Once completed, try running Windows Update again.
2. Run SFC + DISM
The next step is to run the two built-in tools that Microsoft included to resolve errors like this.
The “SFC” and “DISM” tools are designed to troubleshoot problems within the Windows kernel and work to fix everything from Windows Update errors to Windows being unable to run certain pieces of software.
You can follow the steps below to use them:
- Press the “Windows” + “S” keys on your keyboard
- In the “Search” box, type “CMD.”
- From the list that appears, right-click on the top list and select “Run as administrator”
This will load the “Command Prompt” window, in which you can type the following:
- “SFC / scannow” + press “Enter”
- “DISM / Online / Cleanup-Image / RestoreHealth” + press “Enter”
After doing this, try updating Windows again. If it doesn’t work, continue with the next steps below.
3. Restart the Windows update service.
The next step is to restart the “service” that Windows uses to operate Windows Update.
To do this, you can follow the steps described here:
- If CMD is not open (from previous step), you need to load it again
- To do this, press the “Windows” + “S” keys on your keyboard
- In the search box, type “CMD” and then in the top list, right click and select “Run as administrator”
With this open, you will need to type the following in the window (press “Enter” after each line):
- net stop bits
- net stop wuauserv
- net stop appidsvc
- net stop cryptsvc
- net stop msiserver
- netsh winsock reboot
- netsh winhttp
Once this is done, you will also need to change the Windows Update folders (pressing “Enter” after each line):
- in% systemroot% SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.bak
- ren% systemroot% system32 catroot2 catroot2.bak
Finally, type the following (pressing “Enter” after each line):
- net start bits
- net start wuauserv
- net start appidsvc
- net start cryptsvc
4.Remove conflicting software
Finally, you will need to remove any conflicting software.
To do this, you need to follow the steps here:
- Right click on the “Start” button and select “Applications and Features”
- Scroll down the list and select the applications that run continuously on the system, including antivirus and internet monitoring systems.
- Click on each one and select “Uninstall”
- Once completed, restart your PC and try the update again