Fixing Windows Update Error 0x80072ee2

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 24, 2010
Updated • May 29, 2016
Windows, Windows Updates

A friend's computer running Windows 7 had been recently infected with the rootkit TDSS which resulted in redirects in all web browsers to affiliate sites. The problem is commonly known as Google redirects and the issue had been fixed back then.

My friend contacted me again after the cleanup asking for help because Windows Update was not working anymore. Whenever Windows Update was used it would run for a long time and display the error 0x80072ee2 in the end without downloading and installing any available updates.

A quick research on the Internet revealed that this error message was related to connection problems to the Windows Update servers.

Suggested fixes included:

  • Checking the firewall to make sure that the Windows Update servers were not blocked.
  • Checking the hosts file to make sure the Windows Update servers were not redirected
  • Testing the connection to the Windows Update servers by downloading a file from it.
  • Running the ipconfig /flushdns command in the command line.
  • Adding Windows Update servers to the trusted zone in Internet Explorer
  • Adding Windows Update servers to the proxy server exception list in Internet Explorer
  • Changing the router's mtu settings

None of these suggestions helped solve the connection problem. Error 0x80072ee2 was displayed after all attempts.

The first thing that one should do when encountering Windows Update errors is to look at the Windowsupdate.log file in the Windows folder. This contains a log that lists all connection attempts, status reports and error messages that are encountered when trying to connect to Windows Update.

My friend's Windowsupdate.log contained a reference to a proxy server. This was strange because no proxy server was used to connect to the Internet and no proxy server was configured in Internet Explorer.

Turns out that Windows Update uses its own proxy server that is set in the Windows Registry. Here are the steps on how to change the proxy server used to connect to Windows Update (solution for Windows Vista, Windows 7 and newer versions of the Windows operating system including Windows 10).

Open an elevated command line from the start menu. You do that with a tap on the Windows-key, typing cmd.exe, right-clicking on cmd.exe and selecting the run as administrator options. If you like to use the keyboard, hold down Shift and Ctrl before left-clicking on cmd.exe instead.

Enter [netsh], then [winhttp] in the command line so that the screen looks like this afterwards.

Now enter the command [import proxy source=ie]. This will import the proxy settings of Internet Explorer which means either direct access to the Internet without proxy if no server is configured or the proxy server that is used to connect to the Internet.

This should have resolved the connection problems to Windows Update if a proxy server was the problem. Winhttp can also be used to set a specific proxy server by using the [set proxy address] command. A restart of the computer might be needed before the changes are taken into account (or killing the explorer.exe process and reloading it).

If you are interested in all netsh commands available, check out this Technet help document that lists and explains them all.

Fixing Windows Update Error 0x80072ee2
Article Name
Fixing Windows Update Error 0x80072ee2
Find out how to fix the Windows Update error 0x80072ee2 when you are trying to use the service to look for, download, and install new updates for Windows.
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  1. Hamed said on May 16, 2019 at 7:41 am

    Yes!! this worked!! I was really struggling with this! Thank you very much :)

  2. said on May 4, 2018 at 6:12 am

    Many thanks for the fixes suggested. Actually it works.

  3. hornylamb said on May 17, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    thanks a lot , it fix this problem..

  4. David said on December 1, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I received this error message after moving our companies WSUS server to a new IP address. Our DNS server was still reporting the old IP address and all updates quit until it was corrected.

    I realize this is a rare cause for error 0x80072ee2 but it’s another thing to check if you are using a WSUS server.

  5. chohoci said on July 19, 2014 at 5:12 am

    this is not working … please help me to get a way out :D
    send an answer via email … thanks

  6. Matthieu said on March 13, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Works like a charm (win7 64 pro dutch)

  7. elvis said on January 20, 2014 at 10:31 am

    kindly assist on this. update installation failed.error information – 0x800ee2 (0) am using windows 7 32 bit

  8. Richard Kennedy said on June 24, 2013 at 11:00 am

    Thank you for the informative article, it didn’t fix the problem on my computer, but it did set me on a useful path. My search for a fix to the 0x80072ee2 Windows Update error on a Windows 7 Professional x64 machine that had just come back from an upgrade eventually took me into the registry. Specifically to the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU. In this key I found that the tech who had performed the upgrade had set the value of UseWuServer to 1, which instructs Windows Update to use a custom server. I changed the value of UseWuServer to 0 (use the Windows Update default server), restarted my computer, and the Windows Update service is now delivering updates without the 0x80072ee2 error.
    Sources consulted that gave useful information:

    1. McDee said on September 10, 2016 at 9:05 am

      Thank you Mr Kennedy, please help me, in my registry i tried to find the Windows Update tab but its not available for my machine (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows) from here there is no WU

    2. Tim said on February 20, 2016 at 8:14 pm

      This one fixed my problem! Thanks Richard!

    3. radey said on November 29, 2013 at 9:17 am

      its not working plz suggest any other way..

  9. Andy said on November 27, 2012 at 10:24 am

    This info fixed it for me, too. Thank you so much. I was tearing my hair out trying to activate the trial installation of Windows 8.
    I’ll echo other’s comments here: WHY DO WE HAVE TO DO THIS, MICROSOFT???
    Despitre trying my hardest, I’m already not a huge fan of Windows 8, why make if even more difficult for me to like it?

  10. Michael Pardee said on November 2, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    I’ll use the bloody hell comment as well. It worked on Windows 8. No idea why we’d even need to do this, you would think they would use the same proxy information.

  11. Rafeeq said on October 21, 2012 at 1:41 am

    Bloody hell, it worked ! Thank you so much.

    Used it on WINDOWS 7 PRO 64bits.

  12. anton said on July 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    thank you that helped

  13. Tim said on June 3, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    Thankyou very much for this. I was pulling my hair out, but this sorted everything. Tim

  14. RTR ROCK said on April 17, 2012 at 9:20 pm


  15. Satyam said on March 17, 2012 at 10:50 am


  16. Sahil said on March 26, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    plz help me guysss.

    i cant update windows security essential
    it gives Result code = 0x80072EE2

    i cant able tp update internet explore.

    while updateing windows defender its gives error of 80072efd.
    i have windows 7 home premium 64 bit.

  17. Mark said on February 28, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    That fixed it! I had the same problem after installing windows 7. Thanks!

  18. Tom said on January 25, 2010 at 11:01 am

    Until Windows XP you can get the same result executing
    “proxycfg -u”
    with an administrator account which has entered the correct proxy settings.
    The command seems not to exist under W7 anymore …

    1. FVP said on June 26, 2018 at 3:35 am

      SWEET! Proxycfg trick worked. it allowed updates thru Custom install not the express recommended install for my XP. Thanx.

    2. Martin said on January 25, 2010 at 11:16 am

      Tom that’s true. Proxycfg.exe is not included in Windows Vista or Windows 7. You need to use netsh to change the proxy settings of Windows Update.

      1. dee said on January 19, 2015 at 7:14 pm

        thank you so so so sooooooo much….from the bottom of my heart!!!! i tried a million things and when i did this and restarted my computer the updates start automatically

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