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When Updates Go Bad - A Halloween Story

With Halloween just around the corner, a few days ago Microsoft released the Windows 10 October Update (1809) which promised some great new features but turned into a bit of a nightmare for some users.  

Where did it all go wrong?

Numerous reports are circulating on-line and in the media of people losing their personal data, including all their documents and pictures, during the Windows 10 October Update process.

From everything I've seen on this issue, it points to a QA issue but the full facts have yet to be uncovered.  Maintaining software is a complex task, and dealing with the myriad of different system configurations can be a nightmare in and of itself.  This is not the first time an update has gone bad, and this type of problem is by no means unique to Microsoft  Over the years there have been many widely documented cases of Operating System and Application updates impacting: Computers, Phones, Tablets etc.  all of which serve to underline a couple of major issues:

Firstly that, as users of operating systems and application software, you have very little control over the update cycle and whilst updates are generally good there is always the potential for things to go bad – so you need to be cautious.

The second, and perhaps most significant issue, is that currently there are still a lot of people who do not have a backup of their critical data.

Ultimately, it remains to be seen how many people were impacted before Microsoft pulled this update over the weekend to investigate and remediate the problem.  As with most Windows 10 updates the deployment is staggered and as such was to a certain extent contained and hopefully has not impacted any of you directly. 

Updates are Inevitable

Whilst updates are inevitable, there are a few things you can and should do to minimize the risks prior to any updates.

  • ​​​Ensure you have a current system backup
  • Ensure your drivers are up-to-date before a new update deploys
  • If you're running Windows 10 Professional you can, and we recommend that you do, pause, and / or defer updates for a period, by going into Settings->Update & Security->Advanced Options 

Backups are Priceless

As your local IT Technicians, we're all too often picking up the pieces after someone's computer fails.  And, whilst most people wouldn't drive a car without insurance, entirely too many people own / operate computers/phones/tablets without any insurance.  When it comes to technology, the best form of insurance is a backup, but unless people have been directly impacted by data-loss they're generally blasé about data security.

Viruses, hard drive failures, flood, fire, and theft are some common causes of data-loss; and a tried and tested backup strategy is the best form of insurance for your data.Without a reliable backup, if disaster strikes, all your photographs, personal / work documents, spreadsheets, music collections etc. could be gone – so if you don't have a backup strategy talk to us Today!

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