Microsoft pulls the full download of latest Windows 10 build, bugs to blame?

Windows 10 Continuum
Windows 10 has been well received, but not everything is running smoothly with the OS

If you want to do a clean installation of Windows 10, and have the latest version of Microsoft's desktop OS on your computer from scratch, then you're sadly out of luck – at least for the time being.

It seems Redmond has pulled Windows 10 version 1511 (the major November update) as a full download at some point over the weekend. Previous to this, you could download the full package via Microsoft's Media Creation Tool (MCT) allowing for a clean install, but now the ISO image you'll get is from the July launch, as the Register reports.

This isn't a massive deal for your average user, as everyone can still get the big November update via Windows Update as normal. And indeed if you install a fresh version of Windows 10 via MCT, it simply means you'll have to download the subsequent updates post-installation – just a minor inconvenience.

It's more problematic for IT staff who are performing installations of the OS over multiple machines, as using a single-shot image of the latest version is obviously less of a headache than having to install the operating system and subsequently update multiple PCs.

Broader issue

The Register contacted Microsoft for an explanation of this withdrawal, but only received a vague fending off of a statement as a reply: "The MCT download cannot be used to update Windows 10 PCs to the November update. The November update will be available via Windows Update. If you don't see the November update yet, you will see it soon as it is rolling out in a phased approach."

Redmond didn't say why the MCT download for build 1511 was made available initially, and why this decision has just been reversed.

This affair also points to a potentially broader issue in terms of bugs which have afflicted the latest version of Windows 10. As we reported yesterday, some folks have said that a clean install of the November update build messes up BitLocker encryption, making it fail when the user tries to enable it (whereas those upgrading to the update, rather than going with a fresh installation, aren't seeing any issues).

Other minor bugs have also been reported across the net, so you have to wonder whether the timing of this pulling of the full standalone download is simply a mere coincidence.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).