Windows 10 update is breaking notifications and file search — what to do

Windows 10
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Windows 10 is usually going wrong for someone every time it updates. And this time around, we're seeing some very unique issues around notifications and File Explorer. 

The guilty updates are the cumulative KB4579311 and KB4577671 updates. These apply to both the November 2019 and May 2020 versions of Windows 10, with some of the consequences screenshotted by Windows Latest.

The worst problems revolve around Action Center. This can be as mild as delays to receiving notifications, but can break as badly as displaying no icons or notifications at all. While this can be temporarily fixed by rebooting your PC enough times, it seems to break again shortly afterwards.

Windows 10 Action Center

(Image credit: Windows Latest)

File Explorer is also affected, becoming unresponsive, or causing the taskbar to flash. It can also simply crash, sometimes as quickly as directly after startup, as reported by users on Microsoft's forums and the Windows 10 subreddit.

In addition, there are also a handful of more common problems reported. This includes general performance slowdowns, problems with the monitor flashing on and off or blacking out and printer connectivity issues. However, the latter is fixable if you disconnect the printer, reboot the machine and then connect it again.

If you're experiencing these issues the best thing to do is uninstall the most recent update via Control Panel, and wait either for the next round of updates or for an official patch from Microsoft. 

Richard Priday
Assistant Phones Editor

Richard is based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.