Fix "What needs your attention" error when upgrading to Windows 10 May 2019 Update

Martin Brinkmann
Apr 22, 2019
Updated • Apr 25, 2019
Windows, Windows 10

Windows 10 version 1903, the May 2019 Update, has not been released officially. The new feature update is available on MSDN, in the Release Preview ring, and also on various Internet sites unofficially.

Some Windows administrators who attempt to upgrade existing installations of Windows 10 to the new version receive "What needs your attention" error messages right now that indicate that PC hardware drivers or services are not (yet) ready for the upgrade.

The error message, unfortunately, does not reveal any information about the hardware. Microsoft plans to improve these error messages in Windows 10 version 1903, but administrators are left alone currently when it comes to troubleshooting and resolving the issue.

Update: Microsoft published a support page that provides a solution for the issue. According to KB4500988, the issue is caused by external USB devices or SD memory cards that are plugged in to the computer. Microsoft noticed that external drives or SD memory cards may be mapped to different drive letters after the upgrade to the new version, and that is why the upgrade is blocked. Workaround until Microsoft fixes the issue is to unplug external USB devices or SD memory cards before the upgrade. End

Microsoft was never really good at providing information. Back in 2017, users received another "what needs your attention" error. Back then, Windows stated that an app was not compatible with the new version of Windows 10 and that users should remove it. Windows 10 never revealed which app that was, however, so that administrators had to use trial and error to find the troublesome app.

windows 10 needs your attention can't be upgraded

The error message states:

What needs your attention

The following things need your attention to continue the installation and keep your Windows settings, personal files, and apps.

This PC can't be upgraded to Windows 10.

Your PC has a driver or service that isn't ready for this version of Windows 10. No action is needed. Windows Update will offer this version of Windows 10 automatically once the issue has been resolved.

The new error message indicates that a hardware driver or service is the problem but fails to provide information. It is as if history repeats itself. Thankfully, suggestions on how to resolve the issue are already available.

Microsoft suggests to stay on the installed version of Windows and wait for Windows 10 to offer the new version via Windows Update. The company reveals that this will be the case when the issue is resolved.

Our colleagues over at Deskmodder offer the following suggestions:

  1. Administrators should try and install the upgrade using a Windows 10 1903 ISO image and disconnected Internet.
  2. Software that may cause the issue includes: iTunes, FutureMark, BattlEye Anticheat.
  3. Hardware that may cause the issue includes Creative sound adapters or Realtek card readers.

Dr. Windows published the following tips:

  • Administrators should unplug any device, e.g. printer, scanner or card readers, that is not required for operation during the update.
  • Checks to find out if recent drivers are available, and to install those.
  • Remove storage cards from devices, especially Microsoft Surface devices.

Closing Words

There is no need to rush and install the new feature update right away or the minute it is released officially by Microsoft; while some user groups may want to install the update to test new features and changes, most may want to wait several months before installing the new upgrade.

Now You: Did you run into the error? What did you do to resolve it?

Article Name
Fix "What needs your attention" error when upgrading to Windows 10 May 2019 Update
Find out what you need to do when a Windows 10 upgrade returns the error "What needs your attention" without providing actionable information.
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  1. Bane said on June 30, 2019 at 8:58 pm

    It’s both Microsoft’s and Creative’s problem. For some reason every time Windows comes out with a new major update…all the Creative drivers just stop working. Both companies need to be on the same page and quit blaming each other. My Nvidia card doesn’t need a roll-back driver every time there’s a new update.

  2. GreatGazoo said on May 27, 2019 at 11:24 am

    for me updating the LAN drivers started the installation process.

  3. Ahmed A. Helmy said on May 24, 2019 at 12:32 am

    Could install it by disconnecting, but guess what … was the worst Windows update experience ever I’ve had…..
    Display issues with my nvidia GTX 1070ti driver, uninstalled it with DDU, windows installed its own driver through updates, then tried to reinstall the latest nvidia driver , back to the same issues.

    Terrible sound quality coming from my Creative Audigy FX card, while it was amazing on the previous Windows 10 builds,

    What’s wrong with you Microsoft ? anyone had any similar issues ?

    I had to roll back to 1809 and things back to normal …..any advice gentlemen here ???

    1. anon :) said on May 25, 2019 at 2:08 pm

      microsoft recommended you to stay on your current build, you didn’t listen

      1. Hayden said on May 28, 2019 at 12:30 am

        Drivers are an issue with the Vendor, not Microsoft. The Audigy is old as. The drivers are just beta now.

  4. Anonymous said on May 22, 2019 at 2:06 am

    Disconnecting did it for me too.

    1. Ahmed A. Helmy said on May 24, 2019 at 1:46 am

      And any issues after installation ?

  5. bob bardos said on April 26, 2019 at 1:53 am

    Yep, for me, disconnecting from the internet allowed the install of v1903 to continue past that blocking point

  6. Croatoan said on April 23, 2019 at 11:30 am

    Same with error “Something is wrong”. You need to guess.

  7. AnorKnee Merce said on April 23, 2019 at 8:59 am

    M$-Win 10’s buggy forced inplace auto-upgrades = “Windows as a disService”: …….

    Win 10 Home users being forced inplace auto-upgraded twice a year as unpaid beta-testers and to prepare for future Planned Obsolescence of their old devices = reduced costs of testing and will force users to buy new OEM Win 10 computers every 5 years or so = increase M$’s profit$.

    Win 10 Pro users paid M$ more money for their licenses just so they can have the “privilege” to not be unpaid beta-testers and “only” be forced inplace auto-upgraded by M$ once per year.

    Win 10 Ent users have to pay more money to M$ just so they can have the “privilege” to be forced inplace auto-upgraded by M$ once per year so that they can run the OS for more than 30 months, eg have to pay for Software Assurance “premiums”(= get “free” upgrade rights) or E3/E5 subscriptions or the twice as costly Win 10 Ent LTSC edition or etc.

  8. AnorKnee Merce said on April 23, 2019 at 8:35 am

    To M$/Nadella: ……. “What needs your attention.”

    Your forced inplace auto-upgrades are quite buggy and are breaking some Win 10 computers.

    You need to stop being super-greedy and stop your twice-per-year forced inplace auto-upgrades in Win 10 or your “Windows as a Service”. You need to go back to your former optional outplace upgrade every 3 years or your “Windows as a Product”(= Win 95 > Win 98 > Win XP in 2001 > Win Vista in 2006 > Win 7 in 2009 > Win 8 in 2012).

  9. Fred said on April 23, 2019 at 3:52 am

    This would seem to be a really useful way to block windows 10 from updating and rebooting your computer when its in use, causing data loss. Maybe someone could make an program that automatically installs/uninstalls some minor non-compatible driver when your computer is in use?

    1. ilev said on April 23, 2019 at 8:44 am

      That is easy done. Just install the current Avast, AVG, Avira, McAffe AV applications and never update. Microsoft is blocking all updates to PCs with these AV apps due to crashes.

      1. AnorKnee Merce said on April 23, 2019 at 9:13 am

        @ ilev

        M$ will likely auto-update or auto-delete your AV program for you so that your Win 10 computer can be forced inplace auto-upgraded.
        ……. Remember KB4023057, which allows M$ to re-enable Windows Update that had been manually disabled by Win 10 users, eg disabled through the Registry settings.?

        “Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated” … or forced inplace auto-upgraded.

  10. stefann said on April 22, 2019 at 7:31 pm

    The best fix for Windows 10 is to wipe the ssd/harddrive and install something else.

    1. Dave said on April 23, 2019 at 6:30 am

      I’m a gamer.

      Games are made to run on windows because it’s the most popular PC OS on the planet. So I run windows because my games perform best on it and I run windows 10 so i can use DX12.

      If I wasn’t a gamer regularly running software that puts incredible demands on my hardware I would go with Linux.

    2. Russ said on April 22, 2019 at 9:56 pm

      Helpful comments are preferred by those who want to, or must use the MS OS…

  11. Dave said on April 22, 2019 at 6:41 pm

    I got an error on my win 10 home 1809 pc yesterday. “A windows store app has stopped reponding” and a few clicks later the troubleshooter started on it’s own.

    It told me it couldn’t fix the error and wanted to reset the app. Never did it say which app.

    I know better then to “reset” stuff in windows 10. I just restarted the PC and eveything is fine.

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