Should You Update To Windows 10 1909?

Windows 10 1909 Update breaks File Explorer...

Buggy Windows updates have long been a source of frustration for users. Prior to Windows 10, Microsoft employed a team of trained technicians to test and verify updates prior to release, including major feature updates. However, due to the massive diversity in real-world hardware and software configurations, this method was far from ideal. So, with Windows 10, Microsoft decided to change the system and introduced its ‘Insider Program’ whereby millions of users worldwide would download and test the latest Windows 10 builds and then report any bugs back to Microsoft via feedback. While sounding good in theory, this ‘Insider’ method has proven to be very unreliable in practice. Not sure why exactly but I am guessing it might have something to do with levels of expertise. The trained technicians, although working within limited hardware and software configurations, were experts in their field. Whereas, while the Insider Program is obviously covering many more differing configurations, it is also open to all types of users whose levels of proficiency/expertise would, in many cases, be questionable. Anyway, for whatever reason, it just isn’t working.

Microsoft appears to have now recognized the carnage some of their updates are causing and has provided the latest feature update, to 1909, as an ‘Optional’ update– at least for the time being. If you are running Windows 10 1903 and go to Settings > Update & Security, you should see the following– where the user is required to click a link in order to initiate the update:

Issues With Windows 10 1909

With the release of Windows 10 version 1909, Microsoft decided to integrate Windows Search directly into the File Explorer. This allows users to enter a keyword in the search field which will then be automatically populated with suggestions based on that keyword. Unfortunately, this new feature has also caused issues with File Explorer, including:

  • File Explorer hangs
  • File Explorer totally unresponsive
  • Lost the ability to right-click and Paste into the search field

*Note that these three main bugs have now supposedly been fixed via an update (KB4532695) issued by Microsoft on 28th January. However, according to some reports, several minor File Explorer issues persist.

What’s New In Windows 10 1909

Here are the highlights:

  • Quickly create an event directly from the Calendar flyout on the Taskbar
  • Improved managing of notifications, including a new button at the top of the Action Center to quickly access related settings, plus the ability to sort notifications by most recently shown
  • Integrating OneDrive content online with traditional indexed results in the File Explorer search box
  • The navigation pane on the Start menu now expands when you hover over it with your mouse to better inform where clicking goes
  • Using your voice to activate third-party digital assistants from the Lock screen

Personally, there is nothing in the new features that gets me overly excited.

Should You Update To Windows 10 1909 Now?

I guess it’s really up to each individual user to decide if any of these new features are worth the risk of potential File Explorer issues, regardless of how minor. I certainly see no value for me, personally, in any of the main new features and will be holding off updating to 1909 for the time being, at least until we are certain that all File Explorer bugs have been fixed.

I am guessing Microsoft will force-feed the 1909 update eventually. When, exactly, is in the lap of the gods.

38 thoughts on “Should You Update To Windows 10 1909?”

    1. Thanks for confirming that the fix hasn’t worked Amir, at least for some users. Will be helpful for our readers to know, appreciate the heads up.

  1. I updated to W10 yesterday, as my bank says it blames me and W7 if anything untowards happens. Soothed by comments on Sevenforums, i hoped Shellfolderfix would still work.
    Alas, only half: inside folders the files don’t stay put, they sort alfabetically. Knives with Knowledge, and Tutankamon with Toothpaste. Im lost; this must be what dementia feels like.
    Can i fix Shellfolderfix (1.1.5) with settings?

    1. Hey Tineke,

      It is my understanding that ShellFolderFix was specifically designed for Windows 7 to force that OS to remember size and position of open Explorer folders – something that Windows 10 already does very well.

      Don’t quite understand what that has to do with “inside folders”. If you right mouse click within an Explorer folder and expand “Sort by” you’ll see half a dozen options to sort your files in different ways. And, if you click on “More…” at the bottom of that list, a window will open with literally dozens of options.

      What is it you are trying to do?

    2. Cooee Tineke Wout,
      I know exactly how you feel about the folder playing up.
      I have a lot of files in my folder and everytime i go across to it & try 7 do something to it, be it click on it, if i click on it quick enough the right context option ‘is it for that folder?’ as it has gone back to the start again & gain & again.

      Jim, say like you are after folder ‘money’, u go to click on it, it goes back to the start of the folder ‘a’. u go to money & it will go back to the start again.
      sometimes you can click on it & move it somewhere, you have to go & find the folder & make sure it was ‘that’ folder that was sent somewhere, and not another folder.

      If it weren’t for a few programs that I need, I would leave Windoze & go to the Linus side

      I understand your frustration Tineke Wout, I really do. I even re-installed with another flavour of W10, but it still did it. I am glad it is not just me. I am not really glad it is not just me. we should start a club for this problem Tineke Wout, I will supply the booze πŸ˜‰

        1. LOL. Bear, it’s quite alright to reply to oneself. It’s often the only way one can have a sensible conversation. πŸ™‚

          Please pardon my ignorance, as I have never experienced any of these issues I simply have no idea.

          Apparently, my good mate and DCT’s Managing Editor Richard Pedersen is a huge ShellFolderFix fan, has been using it for a long time and is, consequently, somewhat of an expert. So, hopefully, he’ll oblige and maybe post something here to help you guys out. πŸ™‚

        2. Richard Pedersen

          Hello Bear,

          I’ve been using ShellFolderFix with Windows 10 since Windows 10 was a thing and it still works as it did in Windows 7 (with most windows, anyway). It has no effect on the so-called Windows Apps, though.

      1. @Bear, I agree with you. Have you seen a great video by former Microsoft Employee Jerry Berg, better known as Barnacules, explains why bugs in Windows updates increased:
        I thought to share it with you if you haven’t watched it.

        1. Thanks for the video man,
          I haven’t watched it b4 or yet,
          I will do it tomorrow as it is nearly 2am;
          I better get some sleep as all the colours are blending together, that is the last time my cat mixes my drinks πŸ™‚

          Ain’t it weird that it doesn’t matter how much memory we have,
          M$ will grow to fit that whatever I was talking about

  2. Cooee Jim

    I agree 100%, but it gets interesting after a few drinks :p
    Then the cat joins in the my teddy bear then Monster’s (the cat) teddy bear.

    The meaning of life is to have fun πŸ™‚

    Cooee Richard

    I installed ShellFolderFix 7 there are not many options to choose from.
    In my downloads folder I have over 200 folders, videos, PDF’s & .jpg’s.
    Say I open a PDF to see what it is about, then when I close it, it goes back to the start of the folder – the a’s or the numbers. So then I have to go to near the end after the folders & it keeps going on like that, it is driving me to drink (more). Even if i go to rename a folder, I just left click on it then I go to the F2 key, and it goes back to the start of the folder πŸ™ It is not just this folder, but other folders.

    I had a problem where I tried to highlight multiple .jpg’s & explorer.exe would just go so slow it was nearly frozen. I uninstalled some programs & I hope it is fixed now. It was like that even after a new W10 install after i mounted my usual programs on; then she slowed, so it is a program I use. I know what u r thinking, HDD, it is a newish NVMe from WD. That reminds me, I forgot to install the program for it, thanks for reminding me πŸ™‚

    Ain’t computers fun? My 1st one was the ZX Spectrum 64K, I got it for the same price as the 16K as the shop person had no clue

    have a good 1 πŸ™‚

      1. Donald Henderson

        Looks useless and unnecessary to me. The way Windows does it, and has always done it, is perfectly fine.

        1. Richard Pedersen

          Hi Donald,

          That only suggests that you don’t use your computer the same way I do. I have three monitors and want certain folders opening in certain places.
          There is no way that Windows will handle that on its own,

  3. Windows’ sorting options are of no value to me. My brain doen’t remember dates, names etc. It remembers the essence of a subject, placing it with similar subjects in a hierarchy of importance. When they sort like a telephonebook, I am sucked into a valueless world, in which voting for Trump becomes feasible.

    Question to Richard in next post

  4. To Richard, fellow ShellFolderFix fan:
    i use ShellFolderFix since i collided with W7. All my files are in an Archive (self created, outside Documents) with SFF stoppping them, and files within them, from moving around without my consent.
    Since I gave in to W10 (2 days ago) i’m struggling: folders stay in place, but inside folders Windows takes over.
    Any idea why?

    1. Richard Pedersen

      ShellFolderFix has nothing to do with file management. That is what File Explorer is for.

      1. I got it: besides ShellFolderFix i had installed on W7 this disable-windows-explorer-auto-arrange.bat thing, also from Sevenforums. It doesn’t work on W10.

        Hope it exists for W10

  5. As a new user of Windows 10 (on one computer – and someone who would said good bye to it years ago after 6 months of frustration), I (knock on wood) have no problems with Windows 10 and this latest 1909 update (which took place in Nov ’19).

    Software problems aside, we often overlook one important aspect, the hardware. My Windows 10 upgrade was forced by my hardware upgrade which only recognized 10 (nothing lower).

    So, since there is no mention of the hardware, which causes users problems using 10, I find myself in a silly state of being able to see other reasons for problems, namely the hardware. Just a thought. Lucky for me, still have other computers running on Windows 8.1, Mindblower!

    1. Some have no problems with 1909. I have a friend. He is a geek. His PC is a great one. Mine as well. This 1909 issue we talked about has nothing to do with the hardware.

  6. Donald Henderson

    I have never had any problems whatsoever with File Explorer. The update is fine.

    1. Donald Henderson

      Also, I have never had a problem with a Windows update since starting using it in 1999 with 98SE. I have never had to remove one.


      “File Explorer’s unified search experience is still a mess and it looks like things won’t get better until Windows 10’s 20H1 update is out. Microsoft has yet to acknowledge the new problems with Explorer and there don’t appear to be any workarounds. If you have installed Windows 10 November 2019 Update, you have to accept the possibility of experiencing issues with File Explorer and Control Panel.”

  7. G’day Jim,
    So much for the ‘optional update’ Just checked my updates after reading your article. Guess what? 1909 was installed on my machine on the 12 January. Just tried to do a search. Gave it a simple job. I have a folder on the desktop named books . Inside that is a folder ‘Stuarts ebooks’ Easy enough. Asked it to find it. I watched 3 of Jeff Lynnes ELO songs before I got a result. It found it, but what a time. Using Ultra search by the time I typed it there was the results on the screen. Obviously wont be using the File Explorer search facility! I’m beginning to think I’m back in the ’90s.

    1. G’day mate,

      No idea how that’s happened. The “optional” update notification has been sitting on all three of my Windows 10 machines for many weeks (as per the screenshot in the article) without installing anything.


      1. Thanks for your answer Jim. I’m a Brit but lots of mates in Aus. Ex squaddies. Ref the update, I usually let it do it’s own thing but decided to have a look after reading your bit. Definitely been installed. Actually it installed successfully on the 11th then again on the 12th!I Don’t often use File Explorer so missed the ‘problems’. Love your articles. I think we are the same age group. (Getting on a bit!!) I’m a retired blacksmith but found stripping PC’s apart was fun. Built a few PC’s for my grandchildren for school work. The mechanics are easy. The software is the problem! The art is too get them talking to each other. I still like Windows though. Have a good day mate.

        1. I’m an ex Brit myself. Emigrated here with my immediate family way back in 1960… back then, we were known collectively as 10 pound poms.

          Agree, a PC’s internals are not complicated, pretty simple stuff really. Yes, working with PCs is definitely fun, I’m well into my seventies and still enjoy tinkering.

          You have a good day too mate… cheers..

        1. Correct. About 7 years I believe since the last version was released. Still, it is a decent free and portable file manager. Supports tabs but, as far as I am aware, is not dual-panel.

        1. Amir – the alphabetical hierarchical filing system described in that video is very basic and has been in common use for many years. Since way back when hard copy filing systems were the norm, long before digital.

  8. @Jim Hillier I agree with you. A commenter posted this there:

    I think it’s much better to put numbers before any other character to keep the order of the files/folders, like this:

    01 Report
    02 Plan
    03 Pictures

    And so on. I put a “0” just to avoid 11 coming before 2, for example.

    It’s also great to have a template of how your folders and files should be named, to keep the same format in your whole file system.

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