I’ve noticed this after a few phone calls from clients where programs (Specifically anti-virus) just disappeared on it’s own. It seems this has been happening after major Windows updates are done in Windows 10. Windows 10 is different from all the previous versions of Windows as it has two ways of doing updates.
- Regular Windows updates (Security patches and fixes)
- Major OS update releases (like a major update to a completely new version of Windows like upgrading from Windows 7 to 8 or to 10. Instead of version 11, 12, 13, etc. we have new “builds”)
Although in the past major OS updates that allowed us to do an actual “upgrade” versus a fresh install; didn’t necessarily wipe any data or programs, Windows 10 does this. What’s worse is there is no warning that they would do it. How is anyone supposed to know?
How to Geek talks about this in a beautifully written article – http://www.howtogeek.com/243581/windows-10-may-delete-your-programs-without-asking/ . I will cover what he hasn’t here.
I noticed that most of my clients haven’t had this problem and neither have I on any of my computers, but there is a logical reason for this. I haven’t installed those updates. The solution seems to be to turn on a feature to “Defer upgrades” as per screen shot above. I know this sounds like it will happen eventually and we are just delaying the inevitable, but this gives Microsoft a chance to fix this bugs/problems/annoyances/complaints whatever you want to call them. Bottom line is you don’t want to be a guinea pig.
Click your start button and click “Settings” or the picture of the gear (again depends on what build of Windows 10 you are currently on. Click on Updates & Security. Then click on “Advanced Options” at the bottom of that Window. What I do here in addition to clicking on “Defer upgrades”, I also change the option at the top with the drop down menu to “Notify to schedule restart” so it doesn’t reboot on it’s own. Also, I put on the other checkmark to “Give me updates to other Microsoft products when I update Windows”.
I’ve been using updates this way on all my computers and my clients since the beginning, and for the most part we don’t seem to be affected by this issue. The bad news is unfortunately this option only seems to be available for Windows 10 Professional edition. The Home edition does not include this feature. https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_10/can-i-defer-automatic-updates-on-the-windows-10/926599b1-a573-4821-a602-8803055fa92d