Re: 2016 really could be the year of the linux desktop..
After running XP for over 10 years, I can't remember a single time I had this kind of problem with updates.
Last week I built a machine using a spare W7 license and an SSD that'd been donated by a customer. Beaut boot speeds and the like but.. After more than 48 hours of "checking updates" and another 16 or so "downloading updates" it hasn't managed to download anything other than the one "update to update update". There's 140 or so there but not much use if they can't be downloaded.
Have seen similar quite a bit on 7 of late with fresh installs. Almost like something with the update to update updates has something in it to make your experience with 7 a little more hellish, like they want you to use something else... Which I would do on this machine if I didn't want to see how 7 handles installing a ton of updates on an SSD, and how the Aegis W10 killer works on one. (So probably get sick of 7 next week and chuck something fun on there)