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Windows 8.1 "upgrade" does weird things to my PC... how can I switch back?


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#1 starwarsgeek

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Posted 24 December 2014 - 11:31 PM

So about 2 weeks ago, my Windows 8 PC decided to upgrade itself to Windows 8.1 - I SWEAR I did not click "Yes" to update to 8.1 it just did it on it's own!! Every time that window popped up, I clicked cancel. All of a sudden, it tells me to reboot my PC to finish installing the Windows 8.1 update. WHAT?!?!

 

And, now that it's done... my PC is completely screwed up. Half my software doesn't work properly. I can't get from my traditional desktop to my "tiles" not that I use them much but dragging the mouse into the corner doesn't bring that up. I can't drag the mouse into the other corner to bring up the menu to shut down the PC (I just hold the power button now) and lastly - neither of my Blu Ray drives works. The PC came with a BR burner, and I had a BR burner in one of my old PC's that died, so I installed it here. And they were both working in harmony for the past several months, until now. Now when I put a disc in either drive, nothing happens.

 

How do I fix this? Should I just try to use the recovery and revert back to a fresh Windows 8 install? How much will I lose from my HD? I have a 1 TB HD and it's about 55% filled with stuff.



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#2 dc3

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 10:20 AM

It would help if you were to post the make and model of this computer.

 

If this is a OEM computer you should have a recovery partition which you can use to reinstall the operating system to the condition it came out of the box.

 

Back up all of your important data to removable media, such as an external hdd, flash drive, DVDs, etc.


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#3 rp88

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 11:23 AM

I don't know how to restore after you have been forced onto 8.1 from 8.0, but if you can find a way to get your machine back to 8.0 and undo the damage done by the 8.1 "upgrade", then see other posts of mine on this site (on similarly titled threads) to see how to avoid getting forcibly upgraded again. For the sake of keeping your personal files safe you might have to atleast copy them onto an external drive before attempting any kind of restoration to before the upgrade happened, you will likley have to do this from within 8.1. Once they are all copied to a USB stick or external drive, disconnect it and you can begin trying to revert the system to it's older working state when 8 was the operating system.

What i (personally) would advise you to do
1. boot up your 8.1 computer, copy al your documents, audio, video, pictures, zip archives, program installer exe files onto external drives (USB sticks or external hard drives). This way if anything goes wrong all your couments are safe.
2. then fnd a way to revert your 8.1 computer back to 8.0
3. then follow steps to prevent another forced "upgrade" by, amongst other things, ensuring the update KB2871389 is NEVER instaled on your system(see other posts of mine for more on that).

Edited by rp88, 25 December 2014 - 11:24 AM.

Back on this site, for a while anyway, been so busy the last year.

My systems:2 laptops, intel i3 processors, windows 8.1 installed on the hard-drive and linux mint 17.3 MATE installed to USB

#4 dc3

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 11:44 AM

A system restore will not resolve this problem.  This is why I suggested the reinstall.


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#5 starwarsgeek

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 01:29 PM

OK, sorry. It is a HP Envy H8 model. I purchased it earlier this year. I haven't done anything internal besides adding the 2nd BR drive.

 

If I reinstall the Windows 8 version, how do I know it won't upgrade it automatically again in the future? Is there a way to turn that feature off? Every time I rebooted the machine it would ask me if I wanted to upgrade to Win 8.1 and I kept canceling it. I still can't figure out how it did the upgrade in the first place.



#6 rp88

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 04:41 PM

" how do I know it won't upgrade it automatically again in the future?"


Unfortunately it cannot be known, micro$oft may try a new dirty tactic, but this time their devious trick required KB2871389 and KB2973544 to be installed, the same devious trick cannot be used against you again if you ensure that those two updates are NOT installed. I did not mean to suggest a system image(???that one might work??? as a partition on the hard drive containing the original configuration is similar in many ways to a system image, atleast on my windows 8 machine if i wanted to take it back to a brand new state i would use the system image recovery method and choose the system image which is stored in the recovery partition of my hard drive???) or use of system restore could get you back to 8.0, what i am saying however is that once you are back to 8.0 then putting updates on a setting where you must approve them before installation(but checking is automatic) rather than fully automatic where they check AND install without your knowledge/permission and avoiding those two will protect you from this issue as you faced it this time. There may come another sneaky attempt which might use other updates to bundle a "feature" which forces an upgrade, or m$ might give up on trying a forced upgrade knowing that those who didn't want it first time round will continue to resist whatever methods they try, so with future updates do what you can to check them and listen for reports before installing them (but for the security ones atleast you should keep as close to the release schedule as possible, if you install them within a few days of the tuesday on which they come out you are fine, if you leave it much longer for those you run risks of having unpatched vulnerabilities, the other updats which appear are less important and should only be installed after giving them a bit longer for the details to be revealed, the two dirty updates i mention are both classed as "update for..." NOT as "security update for..." ).

Refusing those two updates is the ONLY way for now to prevent automatic upgrade, in future there may be extra precuations which you must take on top of refusing those two updates. The following threads detail long discussions (and arguments) about what is going on with upgrades and forced upgrades, you may want to read through them to see everyone's opinion and the collective sum of knowledge on this issue, but you probably don't want to post there for fear of reigniting the ranting.

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/548408/did-anyone-get-a-different-upgrade-to-windows-81-banner-than-before/
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/549041/a-safe-way-to-prevent-windows-8-becoming-81/
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/545385/about-the-windows-8-and-81-lifecycle-contradictory-info/



Please note:
"upgrade" (or upgrade) refers to going from 8.0 to 8.1
update refers to the usual patches, bug fixes and extra features delivered through windows update(within control panel).

Edited by rp88, 25 December 2014 - 04:58 PM.

Back on this site, for a while anyway, been so busy the last year.

My systems:2 laptops, intel i3 processors, windows 8.1 installed on the hard-drive and linux mint 17.3 MATE installed to USB

#7 Miguel_92

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 06:23 PM

I had the same sort of problem and it wouldn't stop asking me every second of the day that i was on my laptop if i wanted 8.1 which i didn't. A while ago i did download 8.1 and imo it was complete garbage and because i hadn't backed up my windows 8 i was there for about 3 hours getting all my stuff back when i did a clean install of 8.






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