Windows 10 Version 1809 Removes User Data

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A couple of days ago, Microsoft started rolling out Windows 10 October 2018 Update, version 1809. It looks like the update has some serious issues which were not noticed during development. A number of users report that after they update, they lose all their documents, more specifically the folders Documents, Pictures, Videos, become empty!

A number of Reddit users report that the update has erased the user documents and other data. There is a lengthy thread which discusses this HERE.

This happened to both of our Win10 pc's. It doesn't bother me since i mainly use macbook, but my wife lost all her photos and documents from past five years. Anything we can do to get them back? (Files are not in onedrive, windows.old etc folders)

guerillatech 5 points 15 hours ago
Show us your user folder. During big updates like this, and depending how your setup is, you may see two of each folder (documents, pictures, etc.) in there. One is the real folder which contains everything and the other is empty.

JohnGypsy 8 points 12 hours ago
This isn't it. They are actually gone. Several people are now reporting this after an 1809 update. They are deleted, not just moved or in the wrong location. I've confirmed this with a client that had the same issue last night on their Windows 10 Home laptop.

Besides these (absolutely serious and terrible) issues, there are plenty of other reports on Reddit and other web sites. The most often mentioned issues are:

  • Broken file associations.
  • Reset of settings.
  • Deleted scheduled tasks.
  • Finally, certain users can't install the update. The OS gets stuck in an update-rollback loop.

Personally, I am not affected by any of these issues. The update was smooth, and all my files and settings are with me. However, I sympathize with anyone else who experiences serious issues with this update.

Anyway, I suggest you to make a backup copy of your important data. If you running low on disk space, use OneDrive, Dropbox, or Google Drive, something like that. It is better to expend a considerable amount of time taking a backup or uploading them somewhere even if it feels like a waste of time to you rather than losing them completely.

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

12 thoughts on “Windows 10 Version 1809 Removes User Data”

  1. I have 4 PCs here and I updated 3 without any issue. One had a stuck microcode update which I had to install manually and then the update to 1809 went through.

    Not been affected by the other issues as of now.

  2. I can confirm that many of my tweaks and customizations are removed by major Windows 10 updates, including the latest one. To name a few, shortcut arrows reappear on desktop icons, permissions are altered in start menu folders that block desired changes, added-on My Computer context menu items are removed, and, perhaps most annoyingly, classic Windows 7 games like Solitaire and Minesweeper are summarily removed without my permission. I can fix many of these issues with Winaero Tweaker, but it’s tedious and annoying to be forced to do this every time a major update occurs. I appreciate having your tweaking utility to help me stay one step ahead of Microsoft, but I wish they would leave my settings alone!

    1. You know that Winaero Tweaker now supports the option to export your settings to a file and you can re-import it anytime.

  3. I would like to find out if the location of the folders makes any difference. The default location is on the C:\ drive.

    Many people who have the OS installed on a smaller SSD have moved those folder to another drive.

  4. none removed on mine; all went well except had to repair via Control Panel (Programs); Office 365, on two of four PC’s

  5. I suspect this was done on purpose to once again extort more people into using onedrive.

    Some social addict needs to start a rumor that onedrive files are also affected so that people will turn to cloud services provided by someone other then M$.

  6. At this point I don’t expect Microsoft to reinstate proper procedures to test their products because they are far from losing any money with the outrageous system of consumers being beta testers that they have now. We shall see if the number of users who are pushed to the breaking point and abandon Windows ever becomes significant but I expect that is not likely any time soon.

    I’m now telling people to think very seriously about Linux or Apple for the future because Windows 10 means gambling with the possibility of a lot of pain along with a guarantee of much annoyance as the best possible outcome. Who ever imagined this future in 2003?

  7. There is an old saying that truth is stranger than fiction. At least it will be perversely entertaining to see what else can go wrong before they even consider making a change to their procedures. Maybe if Windows 10 kills someone’s dog? Only time will tell. ;-)

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