If you installed the latest Windows Server update last week, you might have noticed something frustrating—your VPN wouldn’t connect to Windows. The issue mainly targets the Windows VPN client, but that affects multiple VPN devices, like SonicWall, WatchGuard Firewalls, and Cisco Meraki. If you uninstalled these updates, or simply avoided updating after hearing the news, you’ll be happy to learn Microsoft has finally patched the bug.
This bug seemed to mostly affect machines running Windows 10 and Windows 11 after an update Microsoft pushed Jan. 11. As these updates were a part of 2022’s first Patch Tuesday, it didn’t set a good tone for Microsoft this year. (As one Redditor so elegantly put it, “For fuck sake Microsoft.”)
Speaking of Reddit, we first learned of this issue through the site’s r/sysadmin. User In_Gen posted about updates KB5009543 and KB5008876, and how the versions broke VPN support for two Windows 10 laptops. After uninstalling the updates, their VPNs were connecting again, showing that the bug was inherently tied to the new Microsoft patches.
While the VPN issue is reportedly contained to Windows 10 and Windows 11, Microsoft released patches today for nearly all supported versions of Windows, including Windows 7. These updates fix other issues besides VPN connectivity, and can differ based on which version of Windows you’re running. You may see a combination of the following fixes:
- Addresses a known issue that might cause IP Security (IPSEC) connections that contain a Vendor ID to fail. VPN connections using Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) or IP security Internet Key Exchange (IPSEC IKE) might also be affected.
- Addresses an issue that might prevent removable media that is formatted using the Resilient File System (ReFS) from mounting or might cause the removable media to mount in the RAW file format. This issue occurs after installing the Jan. 11 Windows update.
- Addresses a known issue that might cause Windows Servers to restart unexpectedly after installing the Jan. 11 update on domain controllers (DCs).
- Addresses an issue that prevents Active Directory (AD) attributes from being written properly during a Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) modify operation when you make multiple attribute changes.
How to install the Windows VPN patch
If the update is available on your machine, go to Start > Settings > Windows Update (Windows 11) or Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update (Windows 10). Once on this page, you can check for any available updates.
If today’s update isn’t present, you can download it manually from XDA Developers. You can also use this page as a resource to see if you have the proper update; check out your version of Windows, and see if the update name is the same on your end. For example, the VPN patch for Windows 11 is called KB5010795—if you don’t see that on your computer running Windows 11, you’re better off downloading the update manually.
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