Software

Windows 10 October 2018 Update: Nasty document-wiping bug hits some early upgraders

Reports have emerged on Reddit and Twitter that installing the feature update led to the OS wiping files stored in the Documents and Photos folders on Windows 10 PCs.

Some Windows 10 users who downloaded the October 2018 Update are reporting the upgrade wiped their personal files.

Reports have emerged on Reddit and Twitter that installing the feature update led to the OS wiping files stored in the Documents and Photos folders on Windows 10 PCs.

"My wife lost all her photos and documents from past five years. Anything we can do to get them back?" said one Reddit user, while another complained of losing weeks of work.

Most affected users refer to files stored in the Documents and Photos folders under their user profile being deleted.

Is it not clear how many users have been affected and others have reported upgrading without issue, but there are users reporting issues across Reddit, here and here, Twitter, and Spiceworks, as well as in Microsoft's Windows 10 Feedback Hub.

Microsoft has not yet responded to a request for comment, and there are various theories as to the cause, ranging from it being linked to a group policy setting to an error in how Windows moves files from the previous version of Windows 10.

SEE: Windows 10 power tips: Secret shortcuts to your favorite settings (Tech Pro Research)

In the meantime those affected are advising other users to hold back from installing the update.

"Don't be impatient like I was. I have an old upgrade I can copy over, but I've lost several weeks of work because of this issue," said one user.

While the Windows 10 October 2018 Update is now available, users still have to manually trigger or download the update. The update won't start rolling out to PCs via Windows Update until the 9th October.

Microsoft is also warning users not to manually install the update if their PC is running an older version of the Intel Audio Display device driver intcdaud.sys. Doing so "may result in excessive processor demand and reduced battery life", according to Microsoft.

The company has said it won't roll out the update to PCs using the intcdaud.sys driver until it is updated from versions 10.25.0.3 - 10.25.0.8.

Microsoft has said it is using a machine-learning system that takes into account various factors, including driver and anti-virus compatibility, before it attempts to roll out the October 2018 update to PCs, in an attempt to minimize problems.

There have also been reports that some PCs that have upgraded are not showing the correct CPU utilization in Task Manager, although there are indications this has now been fixed.

While major feature updates to Windows 10 had a reputation for triggering showstopping bugs a few years back, recent releases have resulted in fewer complaints.

If you want to hold fire before upgrading, check out TechRepublic's guide to how to defer the Windows 10 October 2018 Update.

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Image: Nick Heath / TechRepublic

Read more about the Windows 10 October 2018 Update

About Nick Heath

Nick Heath is chief reporter for TechRepublic. He writes about the technology that IT decision makers need to know about, and the latest happenings in the European tech scene.

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