Microsoft has fixed that file-deleting bug in the Windows 10 October 2018 Update

After having to embarrassingly halt the rollout of its big new October 2018 Update for Windows 10 late last week – just days after its original release – Microsoft has today said that it’s squashed the file-deleting bug that was the cause for the pause, and is preparing to redeploy the update pending testing by Windows Insiders.

Under specific conditions, the bug resulted in the deletion of predefined user folders, such as Documents and Pictures, when a feature called Known Folder Redirection (KFR) was also in use. KFR allows users to change the location of those predefined Windows folders – so they can be moved to other drives, for example – but to be affected by the bug, users also needed to have kept the original (old) versions of these predefined files and folders in place.  

In an official blog post, the tech giant has stated that only a small number of Windows users were affected by the problem – specifically, less than one one-hundredth of 1% (or 0.0001%) of all installs. At the time the bug was discovered, the October 2018 Update was only being offered to users who had manually clicked the 'Check for updates’ button within Windows settings, which Microsoft credits with helping to minimize its impact.

Tentative steps to re-release

At present, the revised version of the October 2018 Update is only being made available to users who've signed up to the Windows Insider program, and Microsoft says it will monitor their feedback and data diagnostics.

A wider release will follow once the company is sure that the issue has been fully resolved, although a specific date for the rollout has not yet been announced.

Microsoft recommends that any users affected by the bug should call their local Microsoft support number, and technicians will be able to assist users with recovering any data that's been lost.

Dan Gardiner
Managing Editor – APAC

Dan is a veteran Australian tech journalist with more than 20 years industry experience. He cut his teeth in the world of print media, starting as a product reviewer and tester and eventually working his way up to become editor of the two top-selling tech mags Down Under (TechLife and APC) and has been managing TechRadar's APAC presence since 2016. He's passionate about most things tech, but is particularly opinionated when it comes to PC hardware, phones, ereaders, video games and online streaming. When he's not staring at screens, Dan loves to spend time cooking – particularly spicy Thai food. (If it's not hot enough to bring tears to your eyes, he's not interested.)