Microsoft released its regular suite of Patch Tuesday updates to all supported versions of Windows 10, Windows 8.1, and Windows 7 ESU customers yesterday. However, users of Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 (WSL 2) have begun reporting that the updates are causing issues with the environment. The troublesome update seems to be the one released for the May 2020 Update (version 2004), filed under KB4571756.
Installing the cumulative update that bumps up the build to 19041.508 supposedly causes WSL2 to not load and display an “Element not found error”. It is not clear how widespread the issue is, and if there are any specific configurations that are causing the issue. Users on GitHub report that the problems began surfacing after installing the update, and that uninstalling the quality update fixed the problem.
Interestingly, though users claim to be able to get WSL 2 working post uninstalling KB4571756, the problem with WSL prompting an error has existed since late July and also plagues users when they try to upgrade from WSL 1 to WSL 2. Another thread suggests that the errors are being served in Insider Preview builds, suggesting that the problem is not specific just to current production versions of the OS.
It is not clear what exactly causes the issue since it affects multiple versions of the OS. It is also not clear if it was fixed with a previous patch for the production versions that reappeared with the latest round of updates. There are no reports on whether the error is seen on Windows 10 versions 1903 and 1909 since WSL 2 was backported to those versions last month.
While the known issues on the KB article does not list the WSL 2 problems, a response on GitHub suggests that the company is working on a fix. For those running production builds that rely on WSL 2, it is best to pause the latest updates from installing. The only workaround for those that are facing issues after the update is to uninstall the cumulative patch by heading to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > View update history > Uninstall updates and uninstalling KB4571756..