Windows Update problems

19 Jul 2004
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United Kingdom
I've got my MS Windows updater set to the default auto (3:00AM) update. There was an update last night and this morning it displayed a message that it needed a reboot.

After reboot I noticed that there was no sound and all my (control panel) settings (Taskbar, display, etc) have gone back to their default. I opened the Sounds and Audio Devices control panel it says there's no audio device?? The PC is also extremely slow to respond; about a minute to bring up the Sounds control panel.

I tried to open the System control panel but it never comes up. Everytime I double-click the PC whirrs but then nothing. I tried to view the system details from MS Word (About>System Info) but again the PC just whirrs for a while and then nothing. The other control panels seem to come up fine, be it a little slowly.

Whats happened?
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Sounds like the audio drivers have been updated/replaced by MS Update with Microsoft drivers rather than the vendor/manufacturer drivers for your audio card/chipset.

In essence as far as I can think, you have two options. You could use System Restore to restore your Windows to before the Updates were installed.

Or, you could try rolling back the driver by using Device Manager. There are quite a few steps to this. Assuming your PC is running Windows XP (Vista shouldn't be too different) go to Desktop, right click My Computer then click Manage. In the window, Computer Management on the left pane click Device Manager. On the right hand pane, expand Sound, video and game controllers.

Here, you should see your audio card/chipset depending on make of your PC/motherboard. For example, mine is 'NVIDIA nForce Audio Codec Interface. If you're unsure which one it is then reply here with a list and I'll let you know which to double click on. Now double click on the audio card/chipset and go to the Driver tab of the Properties window. Click the third button down, Roll Back Driver.

If my theory isn't true it would probably come back with a message saying there were no driver files backed up for that device, click Yes or No for Troubleshooter.

Hope you manage to sort it.

Also, I would configure your MS Updates to just download the updates and you install them manually and then you know what's getting installed on your PC. I would avoid installing any updates to do with hardware drivers as Microsoft drivers aren't always better than drivers from the hardware vendor.

Happy clicking ;)
Thanks for that. After re-booting a number of times I had the restore disks in my hand and gave it one last reboot. It again took ages but hey presto everything came back to life. When I checked the Sounds... control panel my audio device was back and everything seems (almost) OK.

Not all the sounds are back, may be bacause when I was having the problems, on the control panel Sounds and Audio Devices>Sounds>Sound Scheme the previous setting was blank but I changed it to Windows Default. In the drop down there are two options - no sounds and Windows Default - but how can I set it back to blank so that none of these two are selected?
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