Windows 10 has actually streamlined the update process, so you should be seeing fewer errors.Microsoft feels your pain: it knows the update process can cause problems every now and again, which is why it's developed a troubleshooter program specifically for it – search the old Control Panel for "troubleshooting", then select 'Fix problems with Windows Update' from the list on-screen.
Speaking of running smoothly, however, these updates don't always do that.
In recent versions of Windows Microsoft has tried to make the process as pain-free as possible, but with so many hardware and software configurations out there, there's always the chance that some unexpected problem will crop up.
Sometimes you'll just get a message telling you to try the update again at a different time.
If you click 'Advanced options' and then 'View your update history', you can see recently installed updates that were successful, and uninstall some or all of them – again, this can be a handy troubleshooting option.
On the next screen you see pick Troubleshoot, Advanced Options, Startup Settings and Restart, and you should then see the Safe Mode option appear: try running through the update process again if you can.
A quick search online will give you Safe Mode instructions for older versions of Windows.Do you know why "have you tried turning it off and on again" is such an IT support cliché? There's no magic trick to this – it simply clears out your computer's temporary memory (including any stalled files or processes), and lets Windows start again from scratch with everything on the system.If your updates are stuck in the background while you still have access to Windows, you can restart as normal; if they're stuck before or after the OS loads, you're going to have to hold down the power button and do a hard reset.One of the more obscure reasons why a Windows update might not be installing is because a virus or some kind of spyware is blocking it: malicious apps like these can often be squashed by Windows security updates, which is why they try and stop the latest patches from being installed on your machine.Try running a full and thorough virus scan using whatever security software you have installed (you do have some installed, right? If you think your antivirus tool has also been compromised you can download some on-demand scanners, like this one from Microsoft or this one from Dr. Restoring key Windows files and OS options is a lot easier than it used to be, and 'resetting' Windows 10 basically means putting all the system files back to their factory state without touching your personal files along the way (although you can choose to wipe your drive completely if you want).If you've got the time, and the patience, we'd recommend waiting a couple of hours, especially with slower machines – go and cut the grass or watch a movie.