I may try to look at and report the exact message there.... Now, went through Windows Update and changed settings to Never Check for Updates. Now, I went to services msc again and rightclicked on Windows Update chose Stop, and this turned OFF the service in that list. After 20 minutes, still find "Checking for updates..." and no change from this.
Other advice about getting Windows Update to work is what I am interested, but I plan to restart computer again and turn the Windows Update Service back ON... I will turn the update service back ON and change settings to "Check but let me choose...". A web/internet search gave a listing: a visit to that webpage was also mentioned at that page this address: I opened Internet Explorer version 9, put in that "windowsupdate..." address.
After half an hour, Windows Update is still checking for updates.
Other kinds of software updates are working well on both machines.
My guess, something is wrong at the other end, not at mine.
Before attempted fixes 13 updates were detected and I selected 11 to install ... https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/947821 "Fix Windows Update errors by using the DISM or System Update Readiness Tool" This is listed as the fix for error code 0X80070057. Although my system is 64 bits the listed requirements did not specify 32 bits.
This created a new Windows\Catroot2 folder and a new Windows\System32\Software Distribution folder ... auth=1 Installed the latest version of the Windows Update Agent. After applying this patch, check the updates manually.