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How to read Windows Update logs in Windows 10

by Total Drivers

Starting with Windows 10 build 9926, Windows Update logs are no longer saved to “%windir%Windowsupdate.log” .

The Windows Update client now uses Event Tracing for Windows (ETW) to generate diagnostic logs that are saved as .etl files in the  “%windir%LogsWindowsUpdate” folder. This method improves performance and reduces disk space usage. However, the logs are not immediately readable.

The following article will show you how to read Windows Update logs in Windows 10.

How to read Windows Update logs using PowerShell

Note: You must be logged in with admin rights to be able to perform this option.

1. Open PowerShell with admin rights.

2. Copy and paste the following command into PowerShell and press Enter.


Note: When finished, this will create a file WindowsUpdate.log on your desktop. It will take a while to complete.

How to read Windows Update logs in Windows 10
Paste the command into PowerShell

3. When done, open the file WindowsUpdate.log on the desktop to read your Windows Update log.

Note: The WindowsUpdate.log file is just a static log file and will not update unless you repeat this option again.

How to read Windows Update event log in Event Viewer

1. Open menu Quick Link Win X and click to  access Event Viewer.

2. In the left panel of the Event Viewer, navigate to the location below and open the log Operational:

Applications and Service LogsMicrosoftWindowsWindowsUpdateClient

3. You can now select event logs in the middle panel of Event Viewer to view their details.

How to read Windows Update logs in Windows 10
Read Windows Update event logs in Event Viewer

How to read Windows Update logs with BAT . file

1. Download file Get_Windows_Update_event_logs.bat.

Contents of the BAT file for reference:

:: This script was created by Matthew Wai at TenForums.com/members/matthew-wai.html
:: https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/67283-read-windows-update-logs-windows-10-a.html
@echo off & mode con cols=75 lines=6 & Title Collecting data from Event Viewer...
Echo.&Echo     Searching Event Viewer for logs about Windows Update. 
Echo     Please wait for a while.
Set " =HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerUser Shell Folders"
For /F "tokens=* " %%# in ('Reg Query "% %" /V Desktop') Do (Set "#=%%#")
Set "#=%#:*REG_EXPAND_SZ    =%"
For /F "delims=" %%# in ('Echo "%#%"') Do (Set "#=%%#")
Set "[Desktop]=%#:~1,-1%" & For /f "tokens=2 delims==" %%# in (
'WMIC OS Get localdatetime /value') Do (Set "T=%%#")
Set "Y=%T:~0,4%" & Set "M=%T:~4,2%" & Set "D=%T:~6,2%"
Set "H=%T:~8,2%" & Set "#=%T:~10,2%" & Set "S=%T:~12,2%"
Set "[File]=%Temp%Update events %Y%-%M%-%D% at %H%-%#%-%S%.txt"
PowerShell $Host.UI.RawUI.BufferSize = New-Object Management.Automation.Host.Size(220,1000)
PowerShell Get-WinEvent -ProviderName 'Microsoft-Windows-WindowsUpdateClient'^|Select TimeCreated, Message^|FT -AutoSize>"%[File]%"
For %%# in ("%[Desktop]%Update events*.txt") Do (Del "%%#")
Move "%[File]%" "%[Desktop]%">Nul
PowerShell "Start-Process Notepad.exe ""%[Desktop]%Update events %Y%-%M%-%D% at %H%-%#%-%S%.txt"""

2. Save the file Get_Windows_Update_event_logs.bat to the desktop.

3. Unblock and run file Get_Windows_Update_event_logs.bat.

4. A Command Prompt will open and close, and save a file with the date and time of the action (in the example,  Update events 2021-04-27 at 09-18-36.txt) on your desktop including includes the Windows Update Client log file.

How to read Windows Update logs in Windows 10
Read Windows Update log with BAT . file

Hope you are succesful.

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