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  • Microsoft updates its Win10 auto-uninstall feature announcement

    Posted on March 13th, 2019 at 15:11 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Remember the gnarly Win10 auto-uninstall announcement that suddenly appeared yesterday? I was — and still am — scratching my head over that one. According to Knowledge Base article 4492307, Win10 will detect when you’ve tried to install a patch that prevented your system from rebooting, roll it back, then block that patch for 30 days.

    In the past few minutes, Microsoft updated the announcement. It now says:

    This new feature is only available for Windows Insiders running Windows 10, version 1903. This version of Windows 10 has not yet been released publicly.

    There’s also a picture of the notification you’ll receive if your machine won’t reboot after installing a bad update

    I still don’t understand how this is substantially different from the automatic bad update unrolling feature we’ve seen since Vista.


  • Microsoft announces auto-uninstall for bad Win10 patches

    Posted on March 12th, 2019 at 06:56 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Yesterday, Microsoft posted an odd Knowledge Base article that has me scratching my head. KB 4492307 says:

    Windows automatically installs updates to keep your device secure and running at peak efficiency. Occasionally, these updates can fail due to incompatibility or issues in new software. Your device has recently recovered from a startup failure if you have received this notification: “We removed some recently installed updates to recover your device from a startup failure.” If Windows detects this, it will try to resolve the failure by uninstalling recently installed updates. This is only done when all other automatic recovery attempts have been unsuccessful.

    To ensure that your device can start up and continue running as expected, Windows will also prevent problematic updates from installing automatically for the next 30 days. This will give Microsoft and our partners the opportunity to investigate the failure and fix any issues. After 30 days, Windows will again try to install the updates.

    That’s pretty short ‘n sweet – long on promises, short on details – but it begs a host of questions. It appears to announce a new Win10 feature that interrupts an endless reboot cycle and removes the most recently installed cumulative update and/or driver(s).

    Further, the feature blocks installation of the same cumulative update and/or driver(s) for 30 days — which is more or less the amount of time necessary to hit the next month’s cumulative update. In the case of bad Patch Tuesday patches, the next Patch Tuesday rolls around in 28 or 35 days. Makes you wonder why the KB article doesn’t say that the auto-uninstaller will just skip the current cumulative update.

    There’s no mention of which Windows 10 versions are covered.

    @alQamar tweets

    Great idea, but the uninstaller should ask before running.

    This KB article references other articles that are ancient — one describes automatic updates for XP and Windows 2000, another describes expanding drivers for Vista.

    It sure does sound like something an intern dredged up and posted just to increase his/her KB count. But maybe I’m wrong – maybe this is a significant new feature. We may never know.

    Color me skeptical, but if you ever hit a “We removed some recently installed updates to recover your device from a startup failure” notification, I’d sure like to hear about it.

    Thx Richard Speed at The Register, Rod Trent at myITforum, @rsmith98, Sergiu Gatlan at Bleeping Computer.