Buggy Win10 1709 cumulative update KB 4074588 redlining, bluescreening, borking USB

The February patch for Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, version 1709, has drawn criticism and problem reports of many shades, from many corners.

Buggy Win10 1709 cumulative update KB 4074588 causes problems
Thinkstock/Microsoft

At least it isn’t as bad as last month’s three cumulative updates for the bestest version of Windows 10 — on Jan. 3, Jan. 18, and Jan. 31 — but many people running the latest version of Windows 10, version 1709, are wondering why and how this month’s 1709 cumulative update is messing things up.

Broken USB ports

By far, the most common problem involves broken USB ports: Install this month’s cumulative update for Win10 Fall Creators Udpate, and your USB-connected devices stop working. There’s a lengthy discussion on AskWoody. One anonymous poster says:

Been dealing with this on several machines today. I uninstalled the update, reboot (Which resolves the issue) then I re-apply the update, reboot and the USB devices work normally. It seems to effect random PCs. I see it more with USB devices that require 3rd party drivers.

Rhherren goes on to say:

Same issue here for us. Our team is having reports of USB devices not working after the login screen. The devices work fine in BIOS. Still no fix yet here for us.

And many more.

On the MSI (gaming notebook) forum, trongod says:

I thought I would pass this information along. Tonight I had to reboot my laptop. After rebooting I lost my usb mouse and any device plugged into the USB ports. I went into my device manager and saw 3 devices that said drivers could not be found:

  • MSI EPF USB
  • USB Receiver
  • USB Receiver

I knew the night before a Windows 10 update was installed so I looked up the last update which was KB4074588. According to this site LAPTOPNINJA, it says the following:

Addresses issue where the certutil.exe -MergePfx feature couldn’t produce a merged EPF file for multiple V1 certificates.

Addresses issue where booting with Unified Write Filter (UWF) turned on may lead to stop error 0xE1 in embedded devices, particularly when using a USB HUB.

Since both of those particular updates had both EPF and USB involved, I uninstalled the update. After that everything was working again. Looks like Microsoft is breaking stuff again and I don’t see any updated chipset drivers on the MSI site since the original. I may have to see if I can find something more up to date, try those and then attempt the update again.

On Reddit, there are a few posts about the USB issue.

Over on the Microsoft Answers forum, Damian Twyman reports a different problem:

My PC did an automatic update this morning which took nearly 2 hours. In completion, I am finding minimised windows are repainting top-down when maximising and I no longer can drag windows across the screens without momentary freezing.... The whole computer is really slow...like it's thinking about things....shouldn't do because it's a oct core I7. This has annoyed me no end and really don't want these updates anymore because have lost many hours of trying to fix updates :(

There’s a steady stream of non-replies from Microsoft that have infuriated more than a few.

Context menus don't display text

The litany of problems with KB 4074588 continues: Context menus don’t display text, the cmd window opens as a tiny window without any displayed text, various changed settings, no text under desktop icons, and on and on.

Michael Cifuentes said it best:

Got a new laptop with i7 because I needed some speed, no I need to finish some work and just can't thanks to your update, the laptop is running very slow and becoming impossible to use, When are you going to provide a solution? Can you at least acknowledge problem?

Inaccessible boot device

There’s yet another report concerning our old friend, the blue screen “Inaccessible boot device,” per VladeB:

after installing KB4058258 I'm getting blue screen with Inaccessible boot device error. I was able to narrow it down to this servicing stack:

C:\windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-servicingstack_31bf3856ad364e35_10.0.16299.212_none_17098c7c31fd065f

It was installed by KB4058258

KB 4058258 is the Jan. 31 cumulative update for 1709.

There’s one proposed, lengthy, workaround on AskWoody, but it’s complex, with four different scenarios:

Some methods may have to be performed remotely because your USB ports aren’t working. Method 4 is the method for when nothing else can be done.

‘Softie Christopher Leung has asked for help in narrowing down the problem.

Would it be possible for you to use these instructions and provide us with the necessary log to analyze the bug?  We will try to get to the bottom of the issue as soon as possible.

Clicking the link, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Microsoft has a feedback procedure specifically for USB devices.

If you’re having a USB problem after installing KB 4058258 (or January’s KB 4058258), please follow Leung’s procedure and submit your feedback to Microsoft.

To my point of view, this big bug speaks volumes about Win10 Fall Creators Update suitability for deployment anywhere — not just in the enterprise. Pundits like to parrot Microsoft’s line that 1709 has been rolled out faster than any other version of Windows 10. This incident makes me think that 1709 just isn’t there yet.

Let’s see what happens with the next 1709 cumulative update. In the meantime, I continue to recommend that you stay with Win10 Creators Update, version 1703. Assuming that you’re using Win10, anyway.

Many thanks to Christopher Leung.

Join use for finger wagging and head shaking on the new, souped-up AskWoody Lounge.

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