Windows 10/11 update deleted desktop [EXPERT FIX]

by Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
Tashreef Shareef is a software developer turned tech writer. He discovered his interest in technology after reading a tech magazine accidentally. Now he writes about everything tech from... read more
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Windows 10 update deleted desktop

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If you have not disabled automatic Windows updates in Windows 10, your computer will automatically download and install the updates. While the regular updates are good, things can seriously go wrong if the update starts deleting files. After the recent update, many users have reported that desktop files and some apps have disappeared from their system.

If you want to recover the deleted desktop files, follow the troubleshooting tips listed in this article.

How do I recover my files after Windows 10 update deleted them?

1. Check for Temporary Profile

  1. Before you take any more actions to recover the lost files, make sure that you are not logged into your temporary profile that was created after the update.
  2. If you are logged into a temporary Profile then you won’t find the desktop files in the desktop.Check Temporary Profile
  3. So, press Windows Key + L to lock the screen.
  4. Press the Space key to get the login screen. From the left side, make sure you select your primary account and login with it.

2. Show Desktop Icons

  1. Right-click on the Desktop empty area.
    Recover Deleted Files in Desktop
  2. Go to View > select Show Desktop Icons.
    Auto arrange icons
  3. Right-click on Desktop again and go to View > Auto-Arrange. 
  4. That should restore the disappeared desktop apps and files on your computer.

Windows Updates are risky business. Make sure to back up your files with these tools and keep your data safe.

3. Files Moved to New Folder

  1. If you are unsure whether Windows Update moved your files somewhere, download a search utility called Everything, here.
  2. Run Everything and search for any one of the files that you think was deleted after the update.
  3. If found, right-click on the file and select Open Path.
    Locate Files and folder in a different location
  4. Check the folder where the file is located and see if the rest of the files are also located in this folder.
  5. If found, move all the files and folders to your C: drive.

4. Roll Back Windows Build / Update

  1. Microsoft Windows allows you to roll back to the previous build in case the new build is too buggy or creates issues, like deleting of files, etc. Here is how to perform a rollback in Windows 10.
  2. Click on Start and select Settings.
  3. Click on Update and Security.
  4. Go to the Recovery tab.
    Roll back to Previous Version
  5. Under “Gop back to an earlier build” option, click the Get Start button.
  6. Note that this option will only available for a few days after the update and will be removed automatically.

Note: Rolling back to the previous build does not guarantee that all the files will be restored, if at all. However, it can prevent the OS from deleting your files again.


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