Microsoft paused the Windows 10 October Update (version 1809) after users, who installed the latest software on their machines, reported that their data including profiles, photos, videos and documents were being deleted after the update. The company has now announced that it has identified as well as fixed the issue. It also notes that the update is first being rolled out to the people who have signed-up for the Windows Insiders Programme.
Windows Insiders are people who get to test the Windows software before it is rolled out for general public. If you are one of these people, it is recommended that you backup your data as you may encounter some problem with the new software. Microsoft is now adopting this cautious approach to avoid any complications when it rolls out the fixed Windows 10 October Update to masses. The company says that it will intentionally start each feature update rollout slowly, closely monitoring feedback before offering the update more broadly.
“While the reports of actual data loss are few (one one-hundredth of one percent of version 1809 installs), any data loss is serious. We have fully investigated all reports of data loss, identified and fixed all known issues in the update, and conducted internal validation. Also, Microsoft Support and our retail stores customer service personnel are available at no charge to help customers,” Microsoft said in a blogpost.
According to Microsoft, the problem occurred if Known Folder Redirection (KFR) had been previously enabled. KFR is the process of redirecting the known folders of Windows including Desktop, Documents, Pictures, Screenshots, Videos, Camera Roll, etc. from the default folder location, c:\users\username\<folder name>, to a new folder location. It seems that the foundation of the problem stemmed out from April 2018 Update. According to the feedback that Microsoft received, users with KFR reported an extra, empty copy of Known Folders on their device. To fix the issue, Microsoft introduced a code in the October 2018 Update to remove these empty, duplicate known folders.
The code resolved the problem of the April 2018 update but also brought another change to the update construction sequence, resulting in the deletion of the original “old” folder locations and their content, leaving only the new “active” folder intact. “We have fully investigated these issues and developed solutions that resolve all three of these scenarios, so the ‘original’ old folder location and its contents remain intact. Today, we also released some other fixes in the monthly update for customers who have already taken the Windows 10 October 2018 Update,” the company announced.