‘Potential Windows Update Database Error Detected’ Error?

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potential Windows update database error detected

Do you happen to notice an issue called ‘potential Windows update database error detected‘? Feel frustrated? You don’t need to be because plenty of other Windows users experience the same issue.

The good news is that the error – ‘potential Windows update database error detected’ is solvable. So, as a Windows user, this is a must-read for you.

Best Solutions to Fix ‘Potential Windows Update Database Error Detected’ Issue

You don’t want to try all these fixes in the article. Instead, you should read the fixes and pick the most appropriate option to address your situation.

01. Restart the Windows Update Service

A potential Windows update database error detected can appear if the Windows Update service doesn’t run properly. So, you can try restarting the same service.

For many individuals, restarting the Windows Update service just works. So, it is absolutely worth trying this solution as it doesn’t cost any money as well.

Mentioned below are the steps to follow to get it done.

  • Press Windows Logo on your keyboard simultaneously with the letter ‘R.’
  • This will open up the ‘Run‘ dialog box. In this dialog box, you will find a space to type text. In this text, you should type in the text ‘services.msc‘ and hit enter. As a result, you will be able to see a separate window titled ‘Services.’
  • Now, right-click on the option called ‘Windows Update‘ and then select the option ‘Stop.’ This should be done if the current status of this process is marked as ‘Running.’ Otherwise, you can simply skip the step.
Stop Windows Update Service
  • Now, press the Windows key again with the ‘E‘ letter. This will open up File Explorer.
  • Once the File Explorer window is opened, you should navigate the path mentioned below in the address bar.
  • Here’s the path: ‘C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\DataStore
  • It will direct you to the DataStore folder.
  • Delete all the files located in this folder without any hesitation.
Delete all the files
  • Now, go to the path mentioned below;
  • C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download
  • It will open up Download Folder. Just delete all the files within this folder.
delete all the files within this folder
  • Now, in the Window labeled ‘Services,’ you should perform right-click on Windows Update.
  • Select ‘Start‘ from the popup menu appearing.
Start Windows Update Service
  • Now, try to do a Windows update once again. If you don’t find any success with this method, you should move to the next solution.

By the way, if you are experiencing errors of netwtw06.sys failed or Net HELPMSG 2182, here are the best fixes for you.

02. Use the DISM tool to Fix Error

The ‘Potential Windows update database error detected’ issue can also be solved using the DISM tool.

This solution can be applied if the issue is caused due to a corrupted Windows update file. DISM is the shortened form for Deployment Image Servicing and Management.

Below are the steps you should take to resolve this issue using DISM. Like the previous method, DISM is a free tool that doesn’t require downloading any third-party tool. Also, using this tool doesn’t need to pay for anything.

  • First, you should open up the ‘Run‘ dialog box. To do that, you should use the Windows Key and R key simultaneously on the keyboard.
  • Then, you should type in ‘CMD‘ within the ‘Run‘ field. Press and hold the Ctrl‘ and ‘Shift‘ keys simultaneously and hit the Enter‘ key. Doing that will let you enter the command prompt with ‘Administrator’ privileges.
  • When prompted for permission, you must grant it to run under Administrator mode.
  • Now, you should type the following command lines and press enter.
  • Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
  • As a result of typing and entering the command, you will see that the DISM tool scans the files. It will compare the files with official system files. The purpose of this command line is to check the compatibility of the system files. Even if there is corruption in the files, this tool doesn’t fix it. Also, please note that this command operation will take some time to complete.
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
  • Then, you should run the command ‘Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth‘. As a result of running this command, you can check if your Windows 10 system has corruptions. Please note that this command doesn’t repair the corrupted files too. Instead, it verifies whether you have such files or not.
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
  • Just like the previous option, this command takes some time to complete.
  • After verifying the existence of corrupted files, you should attempt to repair them. This can be done using the command ‘Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth‘. With the assistance of this tool, you will be able to replace the corrupted files with original online files.
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
  • Needless to say, it will take some time for the entire process to be completed.
  • Once the restoration process is completed, you may close the Command Prompt and proceed.
close the Command Prompt
  • You can check if you can perform a Windows update.

If the issue persists, you can proceed to the next solution.

03. Use System File Checker

System File Checker is another tool you can consider to get rid of corrupted files. If Windows updates are not working after trying the above solutions, it is better to try this method too.

Mentioned below are the steps to consider so you can get rid of this issue.

  • Open up ‘Run Dialog’ using the ‘Windows‘ and ‘R‘ keys simultaneously. Once the ‘Run’ dialog box is opened, you should type in ‘CMD.’
  • Then, press the ‘Ctrl,’ ‘Shift,’ and ‘Enter‘ keys on the keyboard. It will open Command Prompt with Administrator privileges.
  • Click ‘Yes‘ to grant permission.
  • Now, in the command-line interface, you should type in the following.
  • sfc /scannow
sfc /scannow
  • Just like the previous processes, this option will take some time to complete.
  • After the process, just close the command prompt.

You should now go to Windows Update and see if it works. However, if you are still unable to succeed, you should try downloading updates from Microsoft Update Catalog.

Also, let’s figure out how to fix the 0x80240031 Windows update error.

04. Use Microsoft Update Catalog to Download Updates

You should download the updates through Microsoft Update Catalog if the error persists and install them manually.

Mentioned below are the steps to follow to download updates through the Microsoft Update Catalog.

Click on View update history to check the updates that weren’t downloaded to the system. For instance, check the failed update file, search for it manually, and then download it.

View update history
  • Go to the ‘Run‘ command using the ‘Windows‘ and ‘R‘ keys simultaneously. Then, type in ‘CMD‘ in the search box and press ‘Enter‘ to open the command prompt.
  • Now, once the command line interface is opened, you should type ‘systeminfo‘ and hit enter. This will display the system type of your computer.
  • If it indicates ‘X64-based PC’, your computer runs on Windows 64bit OS. However, if it says ‘X86-based PC’, your computer has Windows 32bit OS.
  • Visit Microsoft Update Catalog.
  • Now, type the required update number and click on search.
type the required update number
  • When the search results are displayed, you should select the correct option and click on ‘Download.’
Download WIndows Update Files
  • Once the popup menu is displayed, you should click on the link to download the updates.
click on the link to download the updates
  • Double-click on the downloaded file, and you can follow the onscreen instructions to install updates.

This should resolve the potential Windows update database error detected in the issue. However, if you still cannot rectify it, move to the next step.

05. Go for an In-place Upgrade

You should perform an in-place upgrade to resolve the potential Windows update database error detected issue. Try to download Media Creation Tool and follow the instructions provided on the screen.

  • Go to Microsoft’s official website, which leads you to download Windows 10 operating system.
  • Now, click on the option called ‘Download Tool Now.’ This will allow you to download the Media Creation Tool.
download Media Creation Tool
  • Perform Double-Click on the downloaded file so it will be opened to proceed. Click on the option called ‘Yes‘ when prompted.
Install Media Creation Tool
  • Click on ‘Accept‘ so you will see a new window.
Click on 'Accept'
  • Select the option called Upgrade this PC now and click on the option labeled ‘Next.’
Upgrade this PC now
  • Now, you should follow the onscreen guidance to complete the in-place upgrade.
  • Check if the updates are possible.

06. Update Your Drivers

You can also try updating the computer drivers and see if it works. You can rely on the manual method or a professional tool when upgrading drivers. The most convenient way is to use a professional tool because the manual method is pretty daunting for many users.

With a professional tool like Driver Easy, you can download all the drivers conveniently. Driver Easy only downloads drivers through official sources, so you don’t have to worry about reliability.

Driver Easy

Also, it offers you the option of a two-click operation to download all the drivers for the computer.

As we believe at least one of these methods should fix the ‘potential Windows update database error detected‘ issue. If you have further queries, please let us know.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the Windows Update Database? The Windows Update Database is where Windows stores update data.
  2. Can I ignore this error? Ignoring this error can prevent your system from receiving important updates, posing potential security risks and performance issues.
  3. What if the solutions provided don’t work? If these solutions don’t work, consider contacting Microsoft Support or a professional technician.
  4. How can I prevent this error in the future? Regular system maintenance and software updates can help prevent this and other Windows Update errors.
  5. Is this error common? While it’s not an everyday occurrence, many Windows users have encountered this error at some point.


Windows Update errors like “Potential Windows Update Database Error Detected” can be frustrating, but they are often solvable. By understanding the causes and applying the solutions provided, you can keep your system up-to-date and running smoothly.


Ten years of experience in information and computer technology. Passionate about electronic devices, smartphones, computers, and modern technology.

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