Windows 10 can be fairly insistent when it comes to installing updates which sadly is not always a good thing. While the majority of Windows updates work perfectly well and are designed to enhance your experience, there are times when an update can cause more harm than good and break some features of your computer by mistake.
Windows 7 was more lenient with updates and gave you more control over which ones you could install or ignore. However, this lead to critical updates for maintenance and security being ignored and the safety of systems being compromised, so now for better or worse these updates are installed automatically.
If the worst should happen and a recent update is causing you trouble, we’re going to show you how to uninstall that update to get your system back to the last stable version.
If you want to make sure your windows installation runs as quickly as possible then take a look at our guide here.
How to uninstall Windows 10 updates
Updates for Windows 10 are divided into two different types, patches and builds. Patches tend to be smaller and apply quick fixes whereas builds are much larger and more like entirely new installations of Windows.
When you install a major build Windows will keep the files required to revert your system back to your previous build. The catch here is that these files will only remain on your computer for 10 days, after that period of time they are automatically deleted.
If you’re within this 10 day period then you can follow these instructions to roll back your installation which should fix your problem:
- Head down to your search bar at the bottom left and type in ‘Settings’.
- Go into your Update & Security options and switch over to the Recovery tab.
- Head down to the ‘Get started’ button under the ‘Go back to the previous version of Windows 10’ heading.
- Follow the instructions.
If you don’t see the “Go back to a previous build” section then you don’t have the required files to roll back to the previous version. You’ll need to reinstall Windows 10 from a full system backup that you should have saved (if you don’t have one of these we highly recommend that you get one).
How to uninstall a specific Windows update
If you want to uninstall one of the smaller less impactfull updates then thankfully that is quite a bit easier to do:
- Open up your Windows Settings and head back into “Update & security”
- Click on the “Windows Update” tab, and then on “Update history”.
- On the next screen, click on “Uninstall updates”
You will then be presented with a screen showing a list of recent updates sorted by the installation date. You’ll be able to search through all of the updates using the search box at the top right, so if you have the KB number of the update that is giving you the issue you can search for that to find it quickly.
You can then select the update you want to uninstall and simply click the “Uninstall” button.
Do note that this method will only display updates that have been installed since the last build, as a new build is essentially a fresh install of Windows.