Install Windows 8.1 without any issues

windows-8.1 screen

Windows 8.1 preview has been released last week and lots of people are already having problems getting it installed successfully. The 8.1 update is called, Windows blue. First time a Windows OS update gets a name. So before the update gives error one after another making you sing blues, like I did, out of frustration trying to install Windows 8.1 completely, lets get it fixed. The problems people face are in the area of,

Language supported:

These are the supported languages with this preview release, Arabic, English, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Spanish, Swedish, and Turkish. There is no English GB. This is one of the people’s concern.

So Instead of changing the language to English, that is the English US, you can wait a little longer to get a full release. It is preview for a reason, and a stable release will roll out soon covering all the languages just like Windows 8 does. People in a hurry would have changed the language to US English already.

To change the language, go to the Charms search, and type “intl.cpl” without quotes. Then click on the intl.cpl to open regional and language settings window. You can change the language from here.

“This update is not applicable to your computer” error

This is probably one of the common error most people face it, I had this error as well. The solution is to extract the installer and then run the installer via command window. As a good solution it may seem, it will end up in another issue. Here’s what happens when you extract the installer. First you get the installer to install Windows 8.1 from the Microsoft page here. This is when you are likely to face this error on running the installer. The solution to fix this error is of course, extracting the .MSU file.

It looks like Microsoft rolled out an update to fix this error. Just open the installer, if you didn’t see a message asking you to install an update, download the installer again. The installer should ask you to install KB2849636 update. Even after installing it, you get the following error message when you try to run the installer again,

KB2849636 already installed error

Still the only available option is to extract the installer,

Extracting Windows 8.1 Installer for manual installation

Let’s take a look at how to extract and manually install the .MSU file (Microsoft Update Standalone Package)

  • Copy the installer file, Windows8-RT-KB2849636-x86.msu  to C:\
  • Create a folder like win81 or anything you will remember to extract the contents of the installer to.
  • Open command window at C:\, press shift and right click to get a context menu that has open this folder in command window.
  • On the command window, type this expand -f:* Windows8-RT-KB2849636-x86.msu c:\win81, replace win81 with the folder name you created to extract to. You can copy this line and right click on the command window and paste, just in case, if you didn’t know.
  • Now the extracted folder will have 6 items and will look something like in the image below,

windows 8.1 installer extracted folder

  • The next step is to install it via DISM, (Deployment Image Servicing and Management). To do this, you need to open command window with administrative privilege. To do that go to Charms search, type command, select it and click, run as administrator. Run this command to install the, (image above).

For 64 bit,

You can as well as install it via Package manager, but it didn’t work for me, so I am using the DISM. You can read about PKGMGR vs DISM here.

This should install it. If prompted for restart press y and it restarts now.

After restart and Windows store error

After it restarts installing the preliminary things, it takes you to the Windows store to install the Windows 8.1 update finally.

windows 8.1 windows store

Click or tap on it to begin the installation. You will be taken to a screen that looks like the image on the top of this post. Clicking download, will being the download process. that looks like in the image below,

win 8.1 pending download

You get a message “download not available”. It’s when their servers are too busy with lots of people trying to download. I waited till today to download it, and it worked without any issues. If you have issues, don’t try to download it the same day, leave it a 2-4 days break and come back to the Windows store, and the first thing you will see is the Windows 8.1 preview download.

It still says pending for me. Give it enough time to complete the download.

EDIT: Just after publishing this post, it started downloading…

win 8.1 downloading

The keyword is patience!

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