If you’re running Windows 10 on your computer, the Anniversary Update will eventually download and install automatically on your device. That’s of course, you prevent the installation from happening before hand.
The Windows 10 Anniversary Update brings significant changes, such as improvements to the Start menu and Cortana, and new pen experience with Windows Ink. Security enhancements with features like Limited Periodic Scanning, and a more power-efficient Microsoft Edge browser, which now also includes support for extensions.
While it’s a great update, during the early days we’re seeing many users reporting issues, such as:
- Windows Store app crashing as soon as you open them.
- Cortana disappears after installing the Anniversary Update.
- Microsoft Edge not installing extensions.
- Settings disappearing after update installation.
- Problems with device drivers.
If you installed the Windows 10 Anniversary Update on your PC, laptop, or tablet, and your device is now acting up, it’s slower than usual, or features aren’t working for you, the operating system lets you uninstall any update configured on your device.
In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to roll back your computer to previous version of Windows 10 by uninstalling the Anniversary Update when things aren’t working correctly.
How to uninstall the Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Before proceeding, you should use Windows Update to see if there is any new update that may fix your problem. You also want to research your issue as it may just be an easy fix. Then when nothing works, you can use this guide to uninstall the Windows 10 Anniversary Update from your computer.
Use the Windows key + I keyboard shortcut to open the Settings app.
Click Update & security.
Depending on your previous version you’ll see a new section called “Go back to Windows 8.1” or “Go back to Windows 7”, click the Get started button.
Answer the question and click Next to continue.
Windows 10 will offer you the chance to check for update in case that a new update is available to fix the current issue you’re having. If you’re ready to roll back, click No, thanks to continue.
Read carefully what’s going to happen when you uninstall the Windows 10 Anniversary Update from your computer. For example, you’ll have to reinstall some apps, and you’ll lose the settings configured after installing the latest build. Click Next to continue.
Remember that you’ll need the password you used to sign in to your previous version of Windows 10. Click Next to continue.
Click Go back to earlier build to begin the rollback.
The process may take some time depending on various factors.
What if there isn’t an option to remove the Anniversary Update
If you don’t see the option to go back to a previous version of Windows 10, a few things may be happening.
During the installation process, the operating system saves a copy of the previous version on the C:\ drive on a folder called Windows.old. This is in case that the installation fails and rollback is necessary.
If the upgrade completes successfully, the Windows.old folder will stay on your system, so you can use the steps mentioned above to manually remove the Anniversary Update from your computer.
In the rare case, you don’t have the Windows.old folder, you won’t be able to uninstall the latest update of the operating system. Period.
The second possibility is that you may be trying to uninstall the Windows 10 Anniversary Update after 10 days. The Windows.old folder takes a lot of space on your computer, so to make room in the hard drive for more important files, Windows 10 automatically deletes the Windows.old folder after 10 days. If this is your case, you won’t be able to go back to a previous version.
If you have the Windows.old folder, but you don’t see the option to go back to a previous version. Then there is something else going on your computer.
Alternatively, you can always downgrade your operating system by doing a clean install of Windows 10. In this case, you’ll need to find an ISO file that has the older version of Windows 10.
Once you’re back to an earlier version of Windows 10, you can try reinstalling the Anniversary Update again. If you have identified that there is a bug in the operating system, keep an eye on the problem. When the fix become available, you can once again try to install the new update for Windows 10.
How is the Windows 10 Anniversary Update working for you? Let us know in the comments below.
Originally published on July 2016, updated on August 2016.