Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Windows Update error 0X80072F89 in Windows 98

If anyone gets their hands on a really old computer with 32Mb of RAM and, of course, a legitimate installation of Windows 95/98 in it, updating that operating system through Windows Update may prove to be a slight hurdle.

Internet Explorer 5.0 on its own is now quite an old web browser, but there are at least two reasons why it's important to download updates through Windows Update:

  • After browsing around the web to research the error, the most common suggested remedy was to install Internet Explorer 6 on the computer, but given that as a major next version, a typical installation of IE6 would take more system resources to run on a computer with 32Mb of RAM, than, say, IE5 that's already been installed.
  • Connecting to Windows Update early is especially useful in cases when the computer keeps acting up because of a software issue that must be fixed first.

  1. The first useful suggestion I got is to update root certificates for Internet Explorer, as suggested here.
  2. And this nice Microsoft newsgroup post offers a direct download link for it. Just in case, I'm providing the download link for ROOTSUPD.EXE here, too.
After that, Windows Update should work fine.

So if Internet Explorer 5 has already been installed, Internet Explorer 5.01 Service Pack 2 might also solve the issue, but I can then only vouch for it once I get to update another computer with Windows 98 that's already been installed on a PC. To download IE5.01SP2 and other assorted browser goodies, the browser archive at evolt.org is the best place to start.

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