In January 2017, I wrote a post titled "Here's how you can still get a free Windows 10 upgrade." It has become the single most popular post I've ever published at ZDNet, and it still gets hundreds of thousands of pageviews every month.
In the months after that original publication, I rechecked, revised, and updated the post several times. After the first few updates, though, I ran out of old PCs to upgrade; so I tacked on a note at the end of the article, asking readers who tried this technique to use the contact form and let me know how the experience went.
Windows 10’s next major update scheduled for release in 2020 will feature a new way to update and install optional drivers. In the changelog of Windows 10 Build 19536, Microsoft has confirmed that the firm is still working on an easier way to install drivers and monthly non-security quality update.
This feature was announced with Build 19536 and Microsoft says users will be provided with a new section in Windows Update to manage optional updates without third-party software or Device Manager.
Windows Update’s Optional Updates section will let you see all optional updates including drivers and monthly non-security updates in one place. This means you no longer need to use an app or Device Manager to update a specific driver.
As of Wednesday, January 15, Microsoft will begin pushing its new, Chromium-based version of the Edge browser to Windows 10 Home and Pro users. We covered the beta version of Chromium-based Edge in November. The beta was still pretty raw then—but "raw" is a relative term. The new Edge project began with a complete and fully functional Web browser—Chromium—so it worked fine for browsing the Web. There were just a few rough edges as far as installing extensions, logging into them, and the like.
Starting today, Windows 10 users all over the world have discovered that when they attempt to use Windows Search from the Start Menu to search for a file or application, the results just come up blank.
BING! My laptop has been running at most for 3 days.
Chrome browser needs restarted daily at least once.
Start menu hard to get to open, taskbar may not hide...
Videos do not play or stop over and over
Updates just make it worse!
Reports are coming in that the Windows 10 KB4532693 cumulative update is loading an incorrect user profile and causing the user's desktop and Start Menu to be reset to default.
On February 11th, Microsoft released the Windows 10 v1909 and v1903 KB4532693 cumulative update as part of their February Patch Tuesday updates.
Since then, reports are starting to come in that after installing the update, some users state that their normal user profile is missing, their desktop files are missing, and everything was reset to default.
Just got this today(no restart): Security Update for Windows 10 Version 1909 (KB4524244)
Prey theft protection monitor needed the W10 laptop removed from web site device list and
Windows 10 KB4532693 is for some reason making a temporary user account where those files are kept. By creating a new local account, then transferring the data from the temporary account to the new one, you should get your data back.
This is a convoluted method which requires messing around with user accounts – especially local accounts that Microsoft usually tries to dissuade you from doing (and instead create one using your Microsoft account), and it’s not clear if this will help everyone.
Google Chrome is up to date
Version 80.0.3987.116 (Official Build) (32-bit)
There is speculation that Windows 10’s new-look Start menu will ditch Live Tiles for static icons, and will look similar to the Start menu in Windows 10X, the upcoming version of Windows that Microsoft is designing for dual-screen devices.
We’ve already seen Microsoft introduce new icons to Windows 10 for people testing early versions of the software, so it’s clear that the company is planning to change the look of Windows 10 in the near future.
Giving the Start menu, a part of Windows 10 that most people use daily, a new look and feel is well overdue, in our view.
Microsoft has worked to improve the File explorer experience in the next Windows 10 major update version 2004. File explorer search is now powered by Windows Search. Here is how the search experience has been improved in version 2004.
A bizarre bug could affect some Windows 10 users that try to install the latest Windows release on computers where the BIOS date is set to January 19, 3001, or later on AMD or Intel motherboards.
"It seems if your motherboard BIOS (AMD or Intel) allows you to set a date of 1-19-3001 or beyond, Windows 10 1909 will not finish installing, but locks up during the second reboot of the installation process," as Carey Holzman, an IT professional and YouTuber focusing on computer enthusiasts, told BleepingComputer.
The bug will not go away whatever changes you make to the system's hardware specs as long as you will try to boot off of the hard drive you initially attempted to install Windows 10, version 1909 on.
Multiple users have posted to the Microsoft Answer Forum and the Feedback Hub reporting issues with the update. Some are reporting they are unable to install the KB4535996 update completely; the installation fails with generic error messages like 0x800f0922 and 0x80070003.
One user reported that when trying to install KB4535996, it downloads to 100%, and the install takes considerable time to reach 100%. Once a restart is requested, the machine starts to update on a blue screen where it only reaches 6% and then reboots. The system then warns that it was unable to complete the update.
The update was optional, and users can simply uninstall it. Steps for uninstalling are below:
Open the Settings app via Windows key+I
Choose the “Update & security” option
Switch to the “Windows Update” tab
Click “View update history”
Click “Uninstall updates”
Select the KB4535996 update and uninstall it
Since the update is optional, I delayed 7 days until Update Tuesday
If you can’t boot into Windows 10, then after a number of failed boots, you should see a menu where you can choose to boot into Windows 10’s Safe Mode, which is a pared-back version that allows you to boot only essential parts of the operating system if there is a major problem.
If that menu does not appear, try repeatedly pressing the Delete key or F2 key on your keyboard while Windows 10 attempts to boot.
Once in Safe Mode, uninstall the update using the steps listed above.
Microsoft has unveiled a new plan for the delivery of automatic driver updates that they hope will reduce the number of reliability issues users experience in Windows 10.
To resolve these types of issues, this month Microsoft will use a new automatic driver update plan that performs gradual rollouts of new drivers to a small group of programmatically chosen users before slowly releasing the driver to the rest of the Windows 10 population.
Microsoft is expected to begin rolling out Windows 10 2004 (the Windows 10 20H1 feature update) any day now. One of that release's biggest new features is the second version of the Windows Subsystem for Linux, WSL2. Just before release Microsoft is making a change to WSL2 that's designed to improve its "serviceability," officials said on March 13.
"We actively work with these vendors and determine an action plan to remediate these drivers. To further help customers identify these drivers and take necessary measures, we built an automated way in which we can block vulnerable drivers, and that is updated through Windows update."
Lenovo, HP, Dell, Panasonic, Dynabook, and Getac offer Secured-core PCs, but the cheapest available is Microsoft's $1,099 Surface Pro X. Most of the Secured-core PCs cost north of $1,500 per device. [/quote]
I continue to recommend that you not install this month’s patches. While it’s impossible to say whether this month’s patching bugs are worse than preceding months’ – only Microsoft knows the extent of damage, and it isn't telling – it’s pretty clear that lots of people are having problems.
After one day had to uninstall TOO SLOW!
The top Security Update was never listed as installed: That may be next!
Next I see that TWO Defender updates failed at end of March...
Tired of looking at this for 10 minutes after Settings crashes once...
The report found that Windows-based assets have an average of 119 vulnerabilities per month, and those vulnerabilities are on average patched every 36 days. Compare this to network devices which had an average of only 3.6 vulnerabilities a month, but those vulnerabilities take about one year to patch.
The next highest patch rate was from Apple at 79%. Linux, Unix, and other network devices had a patch rate of 66%.
“With automated patching and “Patch Tuesdays,” the speed at which Microsoft is able to fix critical vulnerabilities on their systems is remarkable, but there still tend to be a lot of them,”
To ensure you continue to have a reliable, productive experience with your Windows 10 devices, we are taking a measured and phased approach to how we offer the May Update, initially limiting availability to those devices running Windows 10, versions 1903 and 1909 who seek the update via Windows Update.
Beginning today, the May 2020 Update is available for customers who would like to install this latest release. If you are ready to install the update, open your Windows Update settings (Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update) and select Check for updates. Once the update appears, you can select Download and install. (Note: You may not see Download and install on your device as we are slowly throttling up this availability over the coming weeks, or your device might have a compatibility issue for which a safeguard hold is in place until we are confident that you will have a good update experience.) Once the download is complete and the update is ready to install, we’ll notify you so that you can pick the right time to finish the installation and reboot your device, ensuring the update does not disrupt your activities.
When I went to Update, I got one for 1909 only. Guess laptop has to wait...
Earlier this week, Microsoft finally released the Windows 10 May 2020 Update to Windows 10 users. The new update comes with various features but also has a couple of known issues.
Microsoft has now updated the Windows 10 update page to indicate if a device is now eligible to receive the update. If you plan to update your system to May 2020 Update and Microsoft has blocked the update, you will see the following message:
So far my 32 bit XP laptop has not gotten this message...
Since the release of the Windows 10 1903/1909 KB4535996 and Windows 10 2004 KB4557957 cumulative updates, Windows users have been reporting that they receive errors that programs are missing when they attempt to launch them.
Microsoft says that users could experience issues using or accessing Storage Spaces configurations on some devices after updating them to Windows 10, version 2004, or Windows Server, version 2004.
Storage Spaces is a Windows and Windows Server technology designed to protect customers' data from drive failures by storing copies on multiple drives, much like RAID (redundant array of independent disks) but implemented in software.
As I write this article, less than a month after the release of Windows 10 version 2004, Microsoft has published details of 13 known issues on the release health dashboard for that version. Two have been marked Resolved and two have been labeled as Mitigated, but the remaining nine are still open.
The logical conclusion is that anyone who would rather not deal with those teething issues should wait two or three or maybe even four months after the initial release of a feature update before installing it. And even then, only do so after confirming that the first wave of known issues has been resolved. Instead, Microsoft is offering that update widely today.
According to the company, all users who have updated Outlook to version 2005 Build 12827.20268 or higher will see an error prompt saying that "Something is wrong with one of your data files and Outlook needs to close. Outlook might be able to fix your file. Click OK to run the Inbox Repair Tool."
After Outlook users click the "OK" button, the Inbox Repair Tool launches and walks them through the repair process.
The next step is to reboot the computer to apply the fixes and, hopefully, have the issue resolved but, instead, Outlook will again display the same error as Woody Leonhard points out.
If you are willing to downgrade your computer's security defense, you need to follow this procedure:
1. Select the start button or Windows Desktop Search and type update history and select View your Update history.
2. On the Settings/View update history dialog window, Select Uninstall Updates.
3. On the Installed Updates dialog window, find and select KB4560960 or KB4557957, and select the Uninstall button.
4. Restart your device.
“I have been facing an issue with the Windows 10 Mail app linked to a Google account. I have noticed that when I respond to emails, the email I send disappears and cannot be found in sent items, outbox, bin, spam, or anywhere actually. The disappeared email cannot be found on gmail's web interface either. It appears that it is automatically deleted and erased from the server.”
06/27 Update: according to several posters, Google has confirmed this is a Microsoft problem rather than Gmail which means users will have to wait for a Windows 10 update rather than a Googles server-side tweak.
IE: Don't link the Windows 10 Mail app with Gmail account!
It offers a number of recovery modes. Which one you should use depends on how long it has been since the data was deleted and the file system of the disk. For example, for files deleted recently, the default option should suffice. However, if it’s been awhile or the disk has been formatted since, then the Segment and Signature modes may be more successful.
Whilst the app is usable by anybody on Windows 10 build 19041 or later, it is recommended for power users, as it uses a command-line interface.
The Windows File Recovery app can be downloaded via the Microsoft Store on Windows 10.
During the installation of Microsoft Edge, it is true that there is a screen asking you to confirm whether or not data should be imported from the likes of Chrome and Firefox. But on Reddit, users have noticed that Edge starts to collect this data before they have granted permission for it to happen.
OneDrive cannot connect to Windows. Files On-Demand require a connection to Windows in order to show your files without taking up space on this device. OneDrive can keep trying to connect to Windows or you can choose to download all your files. You won't be able to use online only files until this is fixed.
"This PC can't be upgraded to Windows 10. Your PC settings aren't supported yet on this version of Windows 10. Microsoft is working to support your settings soon. No action is needed. Windows Update will offer this version of Windows 10 automatically when these settings are supported," his message reads.
Microsoft watcher Paul Thurrott ran into to the same error message when upgrading a machine from Windows 10 version 1809. "Never seen this before," he said.
Making matters worse, the issue arises when Windows 10 2004, also known as the Windows 10 May 2020 Update, is offered through Windows Update. According to Thurrott, the block message appears after the upgrade installs to 30%.
Some people who have upgraded to Windows 10 version 2004 (or Windows 10 May 2020 Update) are experiencing a strange issue with their internet connections.
A problem has cropped up with the Network Connectivity Status Indicator (NCSI) that sits in the taskbar. Affected users complain that the icon indicate that there is no internet connection available, and Microsoft is at a loss to explain what is going on.
Got 2 updates today after blocking for 3 weeks:
After updates the Sound was not working and had to FIX by clicking red Speaker icon in taskbar...
Also installed a critical update KB4565503 found by Belarc Advisor