Microsoft’s latest Windows security updates might break your VPN

Until the company issues a fix, the only workaround is to skip or uninstall it.

Sam Rutherford for Engadget

Microsoft says the April security updates for Windows may break your VPN. (Oops!) “Windows devices might face VPN connection failures after installing the April 2024 security update (KB5036893) or the April 2024 non-security preview update,” the company wrote in a status update. It’s working on a fix.

Bleeping Computer first reported the issue, which affects Windows 11, Windows 10 and Windows Server 2008 and later. User reports on Reddit are mixed, with some commenters saying their VPNs still work after installing the update and others claiming their encrypted connections were indeed borked.

“We are working on a resolution and will provide an update in an upcoming release,” Microsoft wrote.

There’s no proper fix until Microsoft pushes a patched update. However, you can work around the issue by uninstalling all the security updates. In an unfortunate bit of timing for CEO Satya Nadella, he said last week that he wants Microsoft to put “security above else.” I can’t imagine making customers (temporarily) choose between going without a VPN and losing the latest protection is what he had in mind.

At least one Redditor claims that uninstalling and reinstalling their VPN app fixed the problem for them, so it may be worth trying that before moving on to more drastic measures.

If you decide to uninstall the security updates, Microsoft tells you how. “To remove the LCU after installing the combined SSU and LCU package, use the DISM/Remove-Package command line option with the LCU package name as the argument,” the company wrote in its patch notes. “You can find the package name by using this command: DISM /online /get-packages.”