News, tips, advice, support for Windows, Office, PCs & more. Tech help. No bull. We're community supported by donations from our Plus Members, and proud of it
Home icon Home icon Home icon Email icon RSS icon
  • February Win10 1903 and 1909 cumulative update, KB 4532693, causing desktops to disappear

    Home Forums AskWoody blog February Win10 1903 and 1909 cumulative update, KB 4532693, causing desktops to disappear

    This topic contains 55 replies, has 23 voices, and was last updated by  anonymous 1 day, 23 hours ago.

    • Author
      Posts
    • #2139867 Reply

      woody
      Da Boss

      Excellent overnight analysis from Lawrence Abrams and a surprising observation from Günter Born point at a possible smoking gun. Microsoft should be p
      [See the full post at: February Win10 1903 and 1909 cumulative update, KB 4532693, causing desktops to disappear]

      3 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2139879 Reply

      radosuaf
      AskWoody Lounger

      Oh, that’s nice, Microsoft! 🙂

      MSI H110 PC MATE * Intel Core i5-6402P * 2 x 8 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 2133 MHz * Aorus Radeon RX 570 4GB * Samsung 840 EVO 250GB SSD * Western Digital Blue 1TB HDD * Seagate Barracuda 1TB HDD * DVD RW Lite-ON iHAS 124 * Creative X-Fi XtremeGamer PCI * Windows 10 Pro 1909 64-bit
    • #2139895 Reply

      Mr. Natural
      AskWoody Plus

      Why is Microsoft playing around with the desktop now? Seems like they’re on another one of their secret missions which will later cause uproar in the community when it is revealed.

      Red Ruffnsore reporting from the front lines.

      • #2139983 Reply

        Susan Bradley
        AskWoody MVP

        Loss of profile has historically been a race condition between the boot process and something holding files open.  I personally have seen antivirus most often do this but it could be other things like antiransomware protection, group policy settings.  Microsoft DOES test their patches they really do.  What they can’t do is test for the myriad of unknown ways that we set up our computers.

        Susan Bradley Patch Lady

        8 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2140003 Reply

          Mr. Natural
          AskWoody Plus

          Loss of your profile would certainly change the appearance of your desktop.  🙂

          Red Ruffnsore reporting from the front lines.

        • #2140457 Reply

          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          I look at this issue this way:
          If your/mine user folder is affected, in this update, there has to be some procedure, that does something user folder – move/rename/delete files – or messes up with some registry where path to user folder is stored.

          If it manipulates for example wit syswow64 folder, how it can crash my user folder? It happens for 1% of users, but still, there is always risk and this update has to colaborate with user folder somehow.

          It just cant cant happen randomly, otherwise we created AI.

          And still, if some third party SW blocks windows update resulting in user folder crash, how is it, that it does not recognize windows update process?
          I think that affected computers could be somheow infected with malware or viruses.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, WX 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

    • #2139890 Reply

      anonymous

      Seven domain attached computers (1909) with MS AV had no problems with KB 4532693.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2139907 Reply

      tijsco
      AskWoody Plus

      In The Netherlands some people also report these problems. On my website, four visitors said they lost their personal folders. One of them had Norton and of them had no anti-virus, so, it’s not only Avira possibly causing trouble. Here my article about it in Dutch.

      https://www.gratissoftwaresite.nl/nieuws-windows-10-81-beveiligingsupdates-februari-lekken

      3 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2139956 Reply

        woody
        Da Boss

        I also have a tweet from @JasperKusters that absolves Avira….

        Nope, they are not [running Avira or AVG]. But they are running some software that make sure the system/usee can’t do crazy stuff and is pretty boxed.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2140057 Reply

          tijsco
          AskWoody Plus

          I don’t know if this has something to do with the problems, but two of the users had a local account for Windows 10 (not logged in with Microsoft account). Don’t know about the other two.

          • This reply was modified 6 days, 5 hours ago by  tijsco.
          • This reply was modified 6 days, 5 hours ago by  tijsco.
          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2140651 Reply

            tijsco
            AskWoody Plus

            Now six visitors of my site are reporting these problems and three stated they had a local account. The other three, I don’t know yet. Maybe something going wrong with the local accounts?

    • #2139913 Reply

      anonymous

      Will this company ever get anything right ? This is an absolute joke. Sounds like they’re out to trash every ones PC’s.

    • #2139911 Reply

      anonymous

      The desktop disappearing is only the most visible sign, but the issue is that the entire user profile or user data is not accessed so My Documents would also be gone.  Restarting again is the safest first step if you see this problem.  Some reports are that Avira antivirus users are affected.  The profile data is not actually deleted, it sounds, so if it does happen don’t panic.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2139943 Reply

      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      The sky is still not falling, I’m still my own “expert”.

      I’m completely comfortable with Windows 10, “The sky is falling” notwithstanding. I came to the conclusion a few years ago that I have to be my own “expert”, since the advice offered by the tech community simply did not comport with my own experiences and endeavors with Windows since the XP days.

      I still follow my own advice, and not that of others.  As I reported yesterday, I was quite busy online and off with multiple instances of software open and running, adding a new section to my website.

      Aside from Vista, I’ve been ripping the guts out of every version of Windows since Windows 95 and putting them back together to suit the way I want an OS to operate, made countless mistakes along the way, learned how to dig my way out of just about any hole.  And I have always dived in with a recent drive image safely tucked away out of the reach of my Windows shenanigans.

      If I managed to make Windows totally unbootable, I could restore my drive image and, like waving a magic wand, the recent past was gone, except for the knowledge I had gained along the way.  A lot of what I have gained over the years takes doing what I’ve done in order to gain that experience and knowledge, but creating a drive image?

      That is not difficult, not beyond the reach of the average home user.  If one can install software, one can follow my tutorial and protect their systems.  I posted this yesterday in the off-the-beaten-path Forums › AskWoody support › PC hardware › Questions – Maintenance and backups › forum.  Maintenance and backups deserved more prominence because of the degree of utility and self-rescue it provides.

      In other words, on my systems, KB4532693 is just another in a very long line of Windows Updates that have not caused me even a hint of trouble.  My NAS got the push this morning, and still, nothing to report.

      The extrapolated doom and gloom from a few anecdotal reports from various tech writers just doesn’t cut it, really.  1% of Windows 10 users (0.01 X 1,000,000,000) is 10,000,000 Windows 10 users.  If all of that 1% were having these problems, a few things would be happening.  PC repair shops would be turning people away due to lack of capacity, we’d be reading about it in mainstream media, even Fox News would be on Microsoft’s back.

      None of that is happening.  For the  unfortunate few, if they had had a recent drive image, it would be a memory, not a problem.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      5 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2140066 Reply

        TechTango
        AskWoody Plus

        I always have a fresh image backup at the ready (and tucked safely away) before taking the monthly patches.  I also keep a second SSD M2 drive available for re-imaging on a moments notice.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2139947 Reply

      abbodi86
      AskWoody_MVP

      And we thought v1809 deletion bug was serious enough to have Microsoft do more tesing before releasing

      4 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2139953 Reply

        bbearren
        AskWoody MVP

        And we thought v1809 deletion bug was serious enough to have Microsoft do more tesing before releasing

        Not all of us.  I ran v1809 with no real issue until Microsoft pulled it.  I restored my drive images and waited for Microsoft to sort it out.  I soon as they reissued it, I was right back one it.

        Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
        "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
        "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

        • #2140000 Reply

          abbodi86
          AskWoody_MVP

          Likewise, but still, it was scary bug 🙂

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2141054 Reply

            bbearren
            AskWoody MVP

            There are no scary bugs for those of us who have regular, comprehensive backups.  It was a quick and simple task for me to revert to 1803, and wait for Microsoft to sort 1809 out and reissue the upgrade.

            Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
            "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
            "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

            • #2141600 Reply

              JCCWsusser
              AskWoody Plus

              There are no scary bugs for those of us who have regular, comprehensive backups.

              You shouldn’t be so sure of yourself. Destruction of data isn’t the only bad thing that can happen.

              What do you think would happen if I used a copy of Windows XP connected directly to the internet, with comprehensive backups? I can think of several bad things made possible by bugs in XP that backups wouldn’t stop or undo.

    • #2139978 Reply

      pHROZEN gHOST
      AskWoody Lounger

      If Micro$oft should pay us for testing buggy patches, I want retail stores to pay me for being a checkout clerk.

      Byte me!

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2140059 Reply

      Alex5723
      AskWoody Plus

      What they can’t do is test for the myriad of unknown ways that we set up our computers

      If Microsoft can’t test all the various hardware/software/settings combinations, they should go Apple’s way and restrict Windows to specified list of hardware/software and don’t break users’ PCs with beta updates.

      PS : Even when they do go Apple’s way they **** up like with the Surface tablets/laptops..

      • This reply was modified 6 days, 5 hours ago by  Alex5723.
      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2140120 Reply

      anonymous

      I’m on 1809 and holding and just did a 7 style system image backup of the 10 drive/partitions and am in the process of making a 10 recovery flash stick just in case those 1900 numbered feature updates cause issues. I was just recently upgraded to 1809 after starting my new laptop for the first time but so far I’ve got a few more months before 1909 gets pushed to my system as that’s the update listed as being ready to be installed.

      I curious why 10’s update system is skipping 1903 but I’m up to date with KBs currently as I did not know how to do any of that 10 style updating delays on Windows 10 Home.

      But I’m getting my current configuration backed(System Image Backup) up and making that first Windows 10 recovery media on a 16GB flash stick. So at least I can revert if things go off kilter beyond windows 1809 for me.

       

    • #2140132 Reply

      rontpxz81
      AskWoody Lounger

      Please report when and if this problem is fixed by Microsoft.

    • #2140148 Reply

      anonymous

      If you have a temporary account, consider yourself lucky.  Update on my surface deleted everything.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2140248 Reply

        woody
        Da Boss

        Did you look in the C:\Users folder for .BAK or .000 folders?

    • #2140180 Reply

      bbearren
      AskWoody MVP

      Microsoft should be paying you to beta test their buggy patches.

      I didn’t pay Microsoft for Windows 10 Pro, I haven’t paid for any updates/upgrades in the years since I’ve started running Windows 10 (a lot like Linux in the free part, eh?), and by using Windows 10 I agreed to the terms in the EULA, “The software periodically checks for system and app updates, and downloads and installs them for you. You may obtain updates only from Microsoft or authorized sources, and Microsoft may need to update your system to provide you with those updates. By accepting this agreement, you agree to receive these types of automatic updates without any additional notice.”

      Over the years I’ve tried enough various distros of Linux to know that I much prefer Windows.  I have yet to encounter an issue with Windows updates/upgrades, and have no complaints with Windows 10 Pro.  For those very few who do have issues, booting a rescue disc/USB and restoring a recent drive image makes it a non-issue.

      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
      "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      • #2140196 Reply

        Fred
        AskWoody Plus

        woody wrote:
        Microsoft should be paying you to beta test their buggy patches.

        It is sad that so many common consumers and small businesses are obligated to call for expensive professional help to get their pc up and running again. This makes it uncomprehensible and hard to explain. This way over-complexity of the operatingsystem becomes a kind of enemy for the good-willing. And than there is an never ending issue of the cybercrime. Our great-grandchildrens will laugh at us, and will not understand this “stonebytes age”, I think.

        After all.. Just because we're paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get us.
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2140879 Reply

          Someday in the future, a computer will appear that:

          1. When it has a problem, accurately diagnoses it
          2. Tells you what it’s going to do about it
          3. Tells you how long it’ll take
          4. Repair the fault, and if it cannot, will tell you, clearly and distinctly, what the problem is and what you have to do to get it fixed.

          Shortly after this, the Millennium will occur, and we’ll have no more need of the things!  🙂

          Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Wait for the all-clear", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't check for updates-Full Manual Mode. ESU 1 yr."
          --
          "...All the people, all the time..." (Peter Ustinov ad-lib from "Logan's Run")

          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2141063 Reply

          bbearren
          AskWoody MVP

          It is sad that so many common consumers and small businesses are obligated to call for expensive professional help to get their pc up and running again.

          And so totally unnecessary.  There are many very good drive imaging software programs available (free and paid) that it simply doesn’t make sense monetarily to ignore the utility of restoring a known good image instead of spending big bucks in someone else’s shop.

          Before spending those big bucks at a shop, spend a reasonable amount on an external drive and be fully protected from things that go bump in the night.

          Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
          "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
          "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2140237 Reply

      zeuswoz
      AskWoody Lounger

      In my years (20+) of doing IT support on Windows, I have seen this issue countless times. And each time it was caused by one of two things. The first reason is the user profile service had a “moment” at logon and couldn’t access the correct profile. With a hard reset (power off / power on) the issue cleared. The second reason is no free space on the the system volume. This prevents the logon process to create the temporary files it needs to load the profile correctly and thus it shows a temp profile instead.

      Rgds, Zeus

      4 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2140251 Reply

        woody
        Da Boss

        I hear ya… but the reports I’m seeing are across wide swaths of machines — 80 for one unfortunate admin. I think Susan’s right and it’s a race condition… but I’m surprised an installer has problems with race conditions when restoring temporary settings. Should be relatively easy (and very common) to program around. I think.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2140502 Reply

        Mr. Natural
        AskWoody Plus

        I’ve also seen many times where a user logs in and their profile doesn’t load properly and they receive the temporary profile message. The easy fix that worked every time is to have the user log off and back on. No reboot needed, as a matter of fact a reboot would often result in the same thing. Log off and back on and the profile properly loaded.

        That would not resolve this issue with this update since the entire profile has been renamed.

        Red Ruffnsore reporting from the front lines.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2140401 Reply

      Alex5723
      AskWoody Plus

      And we thought v1809 deletion bug was serious enough to have Microsoft do more tesing before releasing

      I saw a post of a Microsoft Surface user that claimed he LOST all of his data after the update.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2140404 Reply

        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Where? Please provide links / info.

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2140458 Reply

          woody
          Da Boss

          I’ve seen several – and what’s amazing is that they specifically mention Surface.

          Günter tells me he’s looking into it. Expect an update shortly. (He says as he scarfs down his first cup of coffee.)

          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2140542 Reply

          woody
          Da Boss

          Ends up that Mayank Parmar ran an article about completely missing data this morning, in Windows Latest, Windows 10 KB4532693 could delete and hide your data.

          He’s very careful to point out that he’s reporting what folks have said. Like him, I’m a bit skeptical – but would welcome more info!

          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2140405 Reply

      Alex5723
      AskWoody Plus

      KB 4532693

      This is not the post I saw but probably a reference to similar posts :

      “Some users of Surface have no temporary accounts, and no restore points. Their data is gone. Let me be the first to say it’s so.”

      https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/microsoft/windows-10-kb4532693-update-bug-hides-user-data-loads-wrong-profile/

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2140632 Reply

      anonymous

      A minor update in December wiped out all my files, and first I found them in the Users folder but when I turned the computer off, they disappeared completely. When I took my laptop to Geek Squad, they found a few of my folders (incomplete) in the recycle bin — interestingly, that hadn’t been wiped out. So I sent the laptop to Geek Squad’s tech lab, they reported they found some of my docs and photos but when I got it back from them, there was absolutely nothing of my original files or folders. And I paid $450 for that — nothing. Plus, I had to buy a new laptop that I didn’t even need. If there’s a fix, I’d love to hear about it because Geek Squad couldn’t help me.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2140660 Reply

        woody
        Da Boss

        My #1 rule when somebody thinks they’ve lost file(s): Run Recuva first, ask questions later.

        Geek Squad won’t be able to do any more than a round of Recuva.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2140680 Reply

          bbearren
          AskWoody MVP

          My #1 rule about files is one I heard at least twenty years ago, probably longer than that.

          Any file for which you don’t have 3 copies is a file you’re willing to lose.  How many external storage drives would $450 buy?

          Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
          "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
          "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

          2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2140663 Reply

      Alex5723
      AskWoody Plus

      If there’s a fix, I’d love to hear about it because Geek Squad couldn’t help me.

      Of course there is a fix. Restore from your ‘last before the update’ image backup.

      No one should use any device running any OS (pc, smartphone, smartwatch…) without creating a daily backup.

      • This reply was modified 5 days, 5 hours ago by  Alex5723.
      • #2140750 Reply

        Susan Bradley
        AskWoody MVP

        A little kinder but what he said.  Everyone MUST have backups.  Short of a total crash of a hard drive, updates (with the exception of the lovely feature update a few years back – and even that was an odd set of circumstances that involved onedrive) – updates don’t delete files.  Given that you found some in a recycle bin, it feels more like a botched ransomware or something else afoot.  Patches don’t delete files.  Hard drives do crash, they can wear out and have damaged sectors.  But mere monthly updates don’t touch doc and pictures and everything else we hold dear.

        Susan Bradley Patch Lady

        3 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2141068 Reply

          bbearren
          AskWoody MVP

          Everyone MUST have backups.

          I completely agree.  Why is this so hard for folks to wrap their heads around?  I haven’t had any problems with updates/upgrades, but obviously some have.  And yet I stay fully prepared with drive images.

          And hardware failure is a matter of when, not if.  I have replaced motherboards and hard drives on my machines, always with drive images at the ready to make a smooth transition after replacement.  It is not that hard to do, and pays huge dividends in both time and money.

          Why people would rather complain bitterly about Microsoft instead of preparing for an easy resolution to problems is something I simply don’t understand.

          Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
          "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
          "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2141089 Reply

            anonymous

            Because people would rather have patches work correctly the first time rather than be Microsoft’s guinea pigs and having to fend for themselves.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2141691 Reply

        rc primak
        AskWoody_MVP

        “…without a daily backup.”

        My data don’t change that often. So at least for System Images I can get away with once or twice monthly. That’s manageable for most people. My DATA on the other hand, get at least one external round of backup every time I make any change I don’t want to lose — at that moment and without any delay whatsoever. (I also do this in Linux, where I find this practice even more critical.)

        -- rc primak

    • #2141021 Reply

      anonymous

      Is  Recuva from ccleaner which has some reputation issues?

      • #2141059 Reply

        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Both owned by Avast.

        cheers, Paul

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2141694 Reply

        rc primak
        AskWoody_MVP

        Last I knew, Avast has not yet messed with Recuva. But they are making noises like they want to consolidate all those single-purpose Piriform utilities into one large multi-purpose rescue suite — and then charge money to use it.

        It hasn’t happened yet, but it would not surprise me in the least if we wake up one morning to find that they have done so. And added “telemetry” and ads to the new package. And made Avast Antivirus Suite the unremovable centerpiece of the whole paid system suite.

        -- rc primak

        • This reply was modified 3 days, 1 hour ago by  rc primak.
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2142030 Reply

          wavy
          AskWoody Plus

          This why, if I think I MIGHT want a piece of S/W I just down load it. Gives the AV folk a chance to catch what ever and I am protected from new improved versions. Do I have a whole lot of s/w I have never or will never used? You betcha, but GiBytes are cheap. 😉

          🍻

          Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2141604 Reply

      Win7and10
      AskWoody Lounger

      I’m on Win 10 Home 1909 and down the chute it came yesterday after pause expired. So far no issues.

      Win 7 Home Premium x 64 SP1 (DELL INSPIRION i5) Still Alive!
      Win 10 Home 1909 (HP ENVY i7)

    • #2141848 Reply

      EP
      AskWoody_MVP

      I’ve applied KB4532693 on Win10 v1903 education on an old HP computer and found no problems, not even the “disappearing desktop” problem

    • #2141897 Reply

      anonymous

      After updating windows 8.1 last week I got a temporary profile. I had to remove the last updates to get my normal profile back. I have Avast clean up, driver updater and premium security.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2142173 Reply

      EP
      AskWoody_MVP

      a follow up on my previous comment – I manually downloaded & installed KB4532693 from the Microsoft Update Catalog site rather than thru Windows Update. that could be one big reason why I’m not experiencing the problems with KB4532693; I did not install it thru WU but from MUC

      anyone else with Windows 10 v1903 or v1909 brave enough to download & install KB4532693 from MS Catalog (instead of thru windows update) to see if the desktop user profile problems occur?

      • This reply was modified 2 days ago by  EP.
      • This reply was modified 2 days ago by  EP.
    • #2142188 Reply

      jabeattyauditor
      AskWoody Lounger

      Three machines at home (all 1909 Pro) with 4532693 installed via Windows Update – no issues. No issues at work (primarily 1903 Pro installs with a few 1909s out there for testing purposes).

      Work PCs are primarily new/newer Dell machines; machines at home are Dell and HP of considerably older vintage.

      Just a data point.

    • #2143939 Reply

      anonymous

      A few different websites are posting the possible Avira, AVG, Avast connection.

      If someone posts their success or failure with updating to 4532693  on 1903 or 1909, could you please state if you have either of those anti-virus packages installed?

      Thanks!

      1 user thanked author for this post.

    Please follow the -Lounge Rules- no personal attacks, no swearing, and politics/religion are relegated to the Rants forum.

    Reply To: February Win10 1903 and 1909 cumulative update, KB 4532693, causing desktops to disappear

    You can use BBCodes to format your content.
    Your account can't use Advanced BBCodes, they will be stripped before saving.