Written by:David Aldridge
7/9/2014 6:25 AM 

I have an older Windows 2008 (not R2) server that I look after and recently it started to fail on Windows Update. The updates would look like they had installed, but on reboot the machine would show them as failed. Looking up the error on the windows update tool showed it as 800719E4.

Mental laziness kicks in and I fire up google, punch in the error number and windows update. A lot of results come back related to Windows Vista - well Windows 2008 and Vista shared the same kernel, so not too surprising. I find one from the official microsoft site, headed as FIXED. Ok good, thats going to be an easy win I think as I click on it. Not so much. The fix suggested was to reinstall the operating system. Seriously ? Official line - reinstall the OS ? That would fix it all right, but would be like buying a new car because the air filter in your old one was dirty. No reinstall is an insane answer for a problem with windows update. Time to stop being lazy and get back to figuring out the problem myself.

I lookup the error number and it is 'log file full'. Hmmmm question is which logfile....

I hadn't actually run a checkdisk in a while, so I figured that would be a good start (don't laugh - I've seen this fix weird issues in the past). So I bring up an admin command prompt and type:

chkdsk /f c:

As its a system disk it gets flagged for check on reboot. I reboot the server and let the check run. It does make some changes to the filesystem, so I am hopeful that might be the quick answer. I rerun the updates and reboot. No dice - they all still fail on reboot.

OK time to actually think about it. I've had problems with windows update in the past, and cleaning out the local copy of the update database and its cached downloaded updates have solved problems I've had in the past.

I stop the Windows update service and go to C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution, where I delete the contents of the Download and DataStore folders. I then restart the windows update service and go to the control panel and make windows update look for updates. This reinitializes the local copy of the updates database and downloads fresh copies of the necessary updates. This takes a while as I wiped out the local copies, but I am hoping it's either a corrupt update or corrupt database.
Once it completes I let it run the updates once more and reboot. Still no dice - the updates fail on reboot.

Remembering that with the 2008/vista kernel a large number of application specific event logs were added I open up event viewer and clear out the WindowsUpdateClient->Operational log, the Bits-Client->Operational log, the Kernel-WHEA->Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-WHEA log and just for good measure the ordinary Application log.
Run the updates again and reboot. Still no dice it still fails on reboot.

What logs are left I think - the NTFS log but thats very low level and the common log file system - a logging system for low level processes brought in with the 2008/vista kernel. I open up an administrative command prompt and type:

fsutil resource setautoreset true c:\

I then go to the control panel and in the files section I disable hiding of files and hiding of protected OS files. I go to C:\Windows\System32\Config\TxR and delete the contents, and then go to C:\Windows\System32\SMI\Store\Machine and delete all of the .blf files, .tm* files and .regtrans-ms files. These are the transaction logs of the clfs.

I once again run the updates and reboot.

This time success - it was the CLFS log files that windows update was complaining about - the transaction logs must have been corrupted. Problem solved without reinstalling the OS, and proved I still remember how to fix things without google.


1 comment(s) so far...

Re: Windows update error 800719E4 fix

Your fix worked for me! When I went into the TXR and Machine folders to delete those files, not all would delete. It said that some of the files were in use (though I had nothing open besides whatever the laptop opens on start up) and couldn't be deleted. That didn't matter, for my case anyway, and the updates are now working again.


By Mindy on  9/17/2015 9:18 AM

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