How to Roll Back Builds and Uninstall Updates on Windows 11
If the current Windows version/build or latest quality update is causing issues, you can easily roll back builds or uninstall updates on Windows 11.
The New Windows 11 brings the biggest changes in the Windows operating system history with major changes in everything from design to features to improved performance. And the Operating system is constantly improving and changing with every features update and build upgrade.
With all the changes, there’s always the chance that the new operating system might bring bugs, compatibility problems, and poor performance. If you encounter problems with the latest updates or the latest builds on Windows 11, you can uninstall the latest updates or roll back builds to the previous version of the operating system.
In this Windows 11 guide, we will guide you through the steps of rolling back builds and uninstalling updates on Windows 11.
Uninstall Quality Updates on Windows 11
Microsoft releases quality updates for Windows at least once a month to fix stability issues, bugs, security vulnerabilities, and other problems in Windows. However, sometimes, you may experience problems or bugs after installing certain cumulative updates that were not present before the updates. Removing the cumulative updates is the easy way to fix those problems. Here’s how you can do that:
First, launch the Windows Settings app by right-clicking the Start menu and selecting ‘Settings’.
In the Settings app, select ‘Windows Update’ from the left sidebar and click the ‘Update history’ option on the right.
Under the Update history page, you can see the list of features, quality, driver, and security updates you have recently installed on your computer.
Then, scroll down to the bottom of the Update history settings page, and click ‘Uninstall updates’ under Related settings.
This will launch the ‘Installed Updates’ control panel. Here, select the update that causing the problem from the list and click the ‘Uninstall’ button at the top to remove it. You can also see the dates on which each update is installed, so you can remove the correct update.
When the ‘Uninstall an update prompt appears, click ‘Yes’.
Uninstall Feature Updates or Builds in Windows 11
While quality updates are released monthly, the major feature updates are rolled out once or twice a year (roughly every six months) to Windows 11. These updates upgrade Windows to the latest version or build with new features, security improvements, visual improvements, performance enhancements, and more. Windows 11 versions are also called builds.
If you experience severe compatibility issues, system crashes, bootup problems, or other issues after upgrading your Windows to the latest version, you can roll back to the previous build or version of the Windows 11 OS through Settings.
Before you roll back to the previous build, you should know that after going back you will have to reinstall apps and programs you installed after installing the update. And you will lose all your configurations and settings changes after installing the latest build.
However, there’s a catch, you can only roll back to the version or build of the OS within 10 days after upgradation. Follow these steps to Uninstall feature updates in Windows 11.
First, click the Start menu and select the ‘Settings’ option.
Next, go to the ‘System’ tab on the left pane and then scroll down and select the ‘Recovery’ option.
If it is less than 10 days since the installation of the build or the feature update, you will see the ‘Go Back’ button under the Recovery section. Click the ‘Go back’ button.
This opens up the ‘Go back to earlier build’ wizard window. On the first page, select a reason why you are going back to the earlier build of Windows 11 and click ‘Next’.
Next, Windows will ask whether you want to check for the latest updates for the current build to try and fix the problems that you are facing. If you want to do that, you can hit the ‘Check for updates option’.
If you decided to roll back to the previous build, click the ‘No, thanks’ button.
Note the information under the ‘What you need to know’ page – This will inform you what will happen when you revert to the previous build. Then, click ‘Next’.
Also, you will be informed that the process will take some time to complete, so make sure your PC is plugged and turned on.
If you have set a password or pin on the previous build and you changed it recently, make sure you know the original password of the old version to sign into that version. Then, click ‘Next.
Finally, click the ‘Go back to earlier build’ button to start the process.
The system will reboot automatically and the setup process will take a while to complete. Once it’s done, your system will revert to the previous version of Windows 11.
If the rollback period of 10 days is over for builds and if the ‘Go Back’ button in the Recovery settings is not accessible or not available, you can try the below method to uninstall quality and feature updates.
Open the Settings app by pressing Win+I shortcut keys and selecting the ‘System’ tab on the left-side panel. Then, scroll down and select the ‘Recovery’ option from the right-side.
Next, click the ‘Restart now’ button under the Recovery options section.
This will prompt a box with the message “We’ll restart your device so save your work”. Now, click ‘Restart Now’ to restart your PC.
If something went wrong with the latest feature update and your computer not even booting up properly to login and access the ‘Advanced startup’ option, you can try the below trick to access the Windows Recovery Environment (Advanced options in the boot menu).
First, restart or start your computer, and as soon as you see the loading screen, hold the power button for 5 sec to shut down the computer. Keep repeating the same process three to four times until you enter the Windows Recovery Environment window.
Now, your PC will boot up to the Windows Recovery Environment. Here, select the ‘Troubleshoot’ option.
After that, select the ‘Advanced options’ option on the next screen.
Then, from the list of options, select the ‘Uninstall updates’ option.
Here, you will see two options, ‘Uninstall Quality updates’ and ‘Uninstall Feature updates’. Now, select the ‘Uninstall feature update’ option.
On the last screen, click the ‘Uninstall Latest Feature Update’ button to remove the latest build installed on your Windows 11 computer.
If it has been more than 10 days since you upgraded the version or if the above ‘Uninstall feature update’ option is not available in the Advanced option, you have no choice but to make a clean installation of Windows 11 or use a backup image to restore the previous build.
Block Windows 11 Version/Build Upgrade using Group Policy Editor
After uninstalling the latest build or feature update, Windows will automatically update the version when a new build becomes available. If you are happy with the current version and you don’t want to upgrade to the next version, you can stop Windows from auto-updating version using Group Policy Editor
However, the Local Group Policy Editor tool is only available for Professional, Enterprise, and the Education editions of Windows 11 but not for the Home edition. Here’s how you can block Windows 11 version upgrade using Group Policy Editor:
Open the Run window and type gpedit.msc and hit Enter to open Local Group Policy Editor. Or you can search for ‘Edit Group Policy’ in the Windows search and open it.
Then navigate to the following location in the left navigation panel of the Local Group Policy Editor:
Local Computer Policy > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Manage updates offered from Windows Update
Then, double-click on the ‘Select the target Feature Update version’ policy in the right of the Manage updates offered from the Windows Update folder to edit.
Now, set the policy to ‘Enabled’.
After it’s enabled, enter the below values to the Options:
- Set ‘Which Windows product version would you like to receive feature updates for?’ – Windows 11.
- Set ‘Target version of Feature updates’ – 21H2 or other versions
In the product version field, enter the OS version – Windows 11. For the ‘Target version of Feature updates‘ field, enter the value of the desired feature update version you want to upgrade to or stay with like
21H2 (latest version) or any other specific version.
Then, click ‘Apply’ to save the changes and then click ‘OK’ to close the dialog box. You can now close Local Group Policy Editor and restart your computer to apply the changes. This will force the Window to install feature updates for the specified version if it doesn’t already have it. This will also prevent your system from installing any other Windows 11 version beyond the specified version.
If you ever want to upgrade to Windows 11’s latest version, simply select ‘Not configured’ or ‘Disabled’ for the above policy and click ‘Apply’. Then, restart your system and check for updates.
Extend Windows 11 Build/Version Rollback Period
By default, Windows 11 allows you to go back to the previous version or build of Windows 11 within the first 10 days of build installation. However, if you want to try the current build for more than 10 days and then make a decision, you can extend that Windows 11 rollback period from 10 days to up to 30 or 60 days. Here’s how:
cmd in the Windows search and select the ‘Run as administrator’ option to launch the terminal with administrative privileges.
Then, type the below command to check the rollback period or uninstall window and press Enter:
DISM /Online /Get-OSUninstallWindow
Now, you will see the ‘Uninstall Window’. As you can see, there are 10 days left in the rollback period.
To extend the rollback period to 30 days, type the below command and press Enter:
DISM /Online /Set-OSUninstallWindow /Value:30
Value:30 specifies the number of days you would like to keep the previous build of Windows 11.
To check and confirm the same roll-back period, type the same command you used above. Now the uninstall windows is changed 30 days.
To extend the rollback period to 60 days, change the value to 60:
DISM /Online /Set-OSUninstallWindow /Value:60