Microsoft has recommended that Windows 11 users uninstall update KB5012643 from their systems due to an ongoing issue with launching system applications.
If this seems familiar it's because it was initially reported over a week ago, but the situation appears to have escalated further after the bug appeared within the recent production channel of the May 2022 update.
This means that the issue is now more widespread, and causing havoc for users trying to launch apps that rely on the .NET 3.5 framework (of which there are many). The issue causes them to crash or even fail to launch entirely.
As reported by Windows Latest (opens in new tab), users have flagged that ShareX, KeePass, Discord and Visual Studio installer as just some of the apps that are affected. One user on Feedback Hub claimed (opens in new tab) that even Microsoft Teams refused to launch after installing the update, displaying an error message that reads “process exited with code 3221225781 (0xc0000135)”.
Is anybody running into an error after KB5013628 / KB5013943 - The application was unable to start correctly (0xc0000135)unable to start any .NET 4.8 programs - bing/visual studio etc.#Windows11May 11, 2022
Microsoft doesn't have an official fix, though it appears that uninstalling the update does solve the issues for those impacted and while it hasn't directly informed users to do so, it did provide detailed instructions on how to roll back to a previous version of the OS for those facing issues. We can read between the lines ourselves.
Still, this update contains some important security updates to help keep your system protected, so if you're not currently experiencing any issues after installing it, there's no need to pre-emptively remove it from your system.
How to uninstall the Windows 11 KB5012643 update
To uninstall the update, open the Start menu, then type in ‘Windows Update Settings’. From there, click ‘Windows Update’ then ‘View Update History’.
Next, click ‘Uninstall Update’ and select KB5012643 then click ‘Uninstall’. Hopefully this will fix the problem, however, you may find that other problems the KB5012643 update did fix have now returned.
Hopefully, Microsoft will release a new KB5012643 update that fixes those issues without introducing extra problems.
Analysis: this is getting embarrassing for Microsoft
Consistently releasing system updates that cause problems is humiliating enough given its history with releasing increasingly broken Windows 10 updates, but a recommendation to simply uninstall the update is frustrating for Windows 11 users who want to retain some faith in Microsoft.
I have no doubts that this won't impact Microsoft's overall reputation too much, but the May 2022 Patch update (which the bug snuck its way into) was intended to fix security vulnerabilities and bugs. A bug-fixing update causing new bugs feels like something that belongs in an Alanis Morissette song.
But all joking aside, if users are unable to install important security updates then how else can they protect their systems?
There have been a few noticeable Windows 11 problems of late, which could push people into losing faith in Microsoft's ability to keep its users safe. With rival company Apple offering some relatively affordable alternatives across both the laptop and desktop space (by means of the M1-powered MacBook Air and Mac Mini), some might start to wonder if the grass is greener elsewhere.