4. Remove content from the SoftwareDistribution folder
- Navigate to the system partition (usually C:) and then navigate to
- Delete everything from the Download folder.
- Restart your PC and give the Media Creation Tool another go.
The installation of Windows 10 via direct upgrade feature is similar to an installation of any win32 application. The installation files, or rather setup, are downloaded and stored on the system partition. After that, the setup starts and it takes some time until everything is done.
The place where Windows Update stores these files is the SoftwareDistribution folder. Sometimes, they get corrupted which makes them unusable.
What you’ll need to do is close everything and delete all content from the SoftwareDistribution folder. After that, you can start and configure Media Creation Tool again and start with the installation.
5. Reset services
The Windows Update services need to run in order for an update to be administered. And the main services and the associated ones tend to stop working or they won’t start when called upon.
This, of course, can be a problem, especially if you’re upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10. The services we’re referring to are BITS, Cryptographic, MSI Installer, and, of course, Windows Update Services.
What you need to do is to stop all associated services and start them again. The best and the fastest way is with the batch script which runs everything for you. This especially comes in handy if you’re not accustomed to these kinds of advanced troubleshooting. You can find all the details in this article.
6. Use the Update Assistant
- Download Update Assistant from the Microsoft website.
- Run the tool and wait until it prepares your PC for updating.
- Back up your data from the system partition.
- Follow the instructions until the installation is completed.
If the Media Creation Tool won’t work, you can at least try using a similar tool with the same role. The Windows Update Assistant allows you to directly upgrade your system to Windows 10 but lacks options to create an installation bootable drive.
Also, it checks your PC’s readiness and tells you if there’s something that fails to meet requirements.
7. Create a bootable drive and update that way
7.1 Create a bootable USB and update Windows 10
- Plug in the USB drive (6 GB or more) and restart the Media Creation Tool.
- Click on the Create installation media (USB flash drive, DVD, or ISO file) for another PC option.
- Pick the preferred language, architecture, and edition and click Next.
- Choose USB flash drive and then click Next.
- After the bootable drive is created, restart your PC.
- Open the USB with installation media from File Explorer and click Setup.
- Update Windows 10.
7.2 Boot with the USB stick and upgrade to Windows 10
- Plug in the bootable media drive created with the Media Creation Tool and restart your PC.
- Just after the PC boots, press F12 (sometimes F11 or F9) to open the Boot menu.
- Boot from the USB and choose your configuration.
- Click Upgrade this PC.
If you can’t upgrade directly from the system, you can use a bootable drive to run the setup. And there are two ways to do this. The first one is to run the Setup from the Windows interface, while the second requires to boot with the installation drive and choose to upgrade.
Both of those, of course, require the creation of the bootable drive.
You can, as well, burn the ISO setup on the DVD, but we’re suggesting to go with the USB flash drive. The flash drive needs to have at least 6 GB of storage space. Also, don’t forget to backup your data from the flash drive, as the creation procedure will ask to wipe everything in order to add the setup.
8. Perform a clean reinstall
Finally, if none of the previous steps fixed the This tool can’t update your PC Media Creation Tool error, the only remaining thing we can advise is a clean reinstallation.
This is the best way to get Windows 10 working as soon as possible. Of course, it undermines the whole concept of an upgrade, as you’ll lose all your system partition data and configuration from the previous Windows iteration.
Nonetheless, this might be the only way to put your hands on Windows 10. If you’re not sure how to install Windows 10 from a scratch, follow the instructions provided in this article.
With that said, we can wrap up this article. If you have any questions, suggestions, or remarks, feel free to tell us in the comments section below.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in October 2018 and was revamped and updated in January 2021 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.