I was having a hell of a time trying to get a Windows 2003 R2 Standard x64 server to load the Windows Update site. I was always getting the error: 0x8DDD0018
Sadly, the troubleshooting info at MS focused on starting the BITS service which (seemingly) was working just fine.
Well, I eventually stumbled on the solution. Try this at a command prompt:
Presto! Windows Updates should be working for you again :)