Microsoft pulls botched WPD driver

After pushing a bad driver onto PCs through Automatic Update, Microsoft posts the complex series of steps necessary to remove it

Microsoft pulls botched WPD driver
Shutterstock/Gunnar Pippel

The mysterious driver that wreaked havoc after appearing on many Windows 7, 8.1, and 10 PCs on Tuesday has been repudiated and pulled by Microsoft.

The driver, listed as “Microsoft - WPD - 2/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - 5.2.5326.4762,” appeared as an optional (unchecked) entry in Windows Update for Windows 7 and 8.1. While Win7 and 8.1 customers had to check the installation box before the driver would be installed, it was a different story for Windows 10 users -- any patch that arrives in the Windows Update queue gets installed.

Microsoft’s statement on the Answers Forum says:

An incorrect device driver was released for Windows 10, on March 8, 2017, that affected a small group of users with connected phones or portable devices.  After installation, these devices are not detected properly by Windows 10, but are affected in no other way.

We removed the driver from Windows Update the same day, but if the driver had already installed, you may still be having this issue.

The official guidance goes on to recommend that users first try to roll back to a Restore Point. As you probably know, Restore Points aren’t automatically created in Windows 10 – the feature has to be turned on manually. If you’re using Win7 or 8.1, the Restore Points are probably available.

If you use Windows 10 and haven’t taken steps to block forced updates, you may need to follow “Method 2 Part 2” of Microsoft's instructions to ensure the driver doesn’t automatically re-install itself.

Forced Windows updates: The gift that keeps on giving.

Discussion continues on the AskWoody Lounge.

Copyright © 2017 IDG Communications, Inc.

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