Did this latest Windows update cause problems for anyone else?

When I shut down last night, I was greeted with the ‘installing updates’ screen, as typically happens once per week when Windows updates come out. I went to bed and let it do its thing.

This afternoon when I booted up, everything including my user profile was gone. All user preferences were gone. Only one icon remained on the desktop: recycle bin.

I tried to do a system restore but it failed, and the system wouldn’t even come back except in safe mode. I’m presently doing a restore from backup (which, thankfully, was located on a network store). Hopefully after all the user date comes back, things will be back to normal.

Just wondering if it was the update, or something more nefarious happened.

I’ve heard of that happening with a specific type of update, but not in a home environment. I believe the idea is that the computer is forced to restart but does so without the installer noticing, meaning that the installer doesn’t finish running once the computer is back up. And so you’re stuck without necessary files.

But this is supposed to be restricted to a certain way of pushing out updates that allows that sort of thing to happen, not the usual way home users get them. The home update process should be able to recover from the computer restarting.

I’d thus be worried about your hard drive possibly failing soon. At the very least, do a error scan on it.

It’s a SSHD, not sure if that matters. I’ll do some health checks in the morning. Hopefully the file restore will be done by then.

What version of Windows?

I’ve been unable to download any updates for about 2 weeks now (Vista Pro). MS help suggests it’s a malware/virus issue but I’ve scanned my computer with everything in sight and nothing works.

The restore was unsuccessful, but Windows has thoughtfully provided me with a list of every file that couldn’t be restored (all of them).

Now that I’ve got some time, I started digging around and see that I’m booting into a bald profile called ‘systemprofile’. If I dig through windows explorer, I can find my correct profile and it looks like all my files are still there. But for some reason windows no longer associates my current log on ID with that profile. I guess that means a screwed-up ntuser data file somewehere.

Also, every time I reboot, the first thing I see is “Windows is preparing your desktop” as if I’m a brand new account using the machine for the first time.


I found another person with my exact problem: Windows 7 x64 %userprofile% and %username% are wrong

As I suspected, seems to be a corrupt ntuser dat file.

Microsoft has issued a Windows Update to fix the problem of Windows Updates.


I’ve had this happen to me a few times and usually a system restore fixes it but one time it didn’t and the following was something I found via Google that worked:
Navigate to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList”
You should find your profile key, with another named identically except for a “.bak” extension
Delete the “normally named” key
Rename the “.bak” named key to remove the “.bak” extension
Restart your machine”

Amazingly, I just now stumbled upon that myself using some clues in that other link.

I noticed the .bak extension affixed to the folder containing all the keys and thought that was very strange. Deleted the .bak and everything is good now. I came here to post the fix and saw your reply waiting for me.