Sunday, December 20, 2009

DO NOT install Broadcom's bluetooth driver software update to Windows 7

I was messing with syncing my Omnia to my laptop via Bluetooth, and my MSI Bluetooth dongle didn't seem to be working properly. I decided to download and install the update from Broadcom's site.

Everything seemed to be going well, until...

Suddenly my machine seemed to be possessed. I watched in horror as the icons from my desktop started disappearing. An error popped up saying the install couldn't find the cab file it needed. The popup dialog said I needed to verify that the file existed. I looked, and the file DIDN'T exist. I was offered no help and no alternatives. The only two choices were find the file (that didn't exist) or cancel. So I canceled, and then the computer completely crapped out. When I went to reboot, the machine told me I was fucked.

I am currently trying to repair via a restore point with my Windows 7 disk, but I'm pretty freaking unhappy about this.

On top of this mess, the whole "deleting icons from the desktop" thing REALLY FUCKED ME, because it deleted files from my Microsoft Mesh environment. How in the world does a driver update ERASE YOUR DATA?! I am worried that I am not going to be able to recover some EXTREMELY important files that this "update" deleted from my Live Mesh folders (stupid me for thinking something "in the cloud" was safe --I thought because it was synced to three computers I was OK, but since those computers were all on when this happened, Mesh "synced" them by deleting all the files that were erased from my laptop).

So... DO NOT install the Bluetooth driver/software update from Broadcom's website. It will KILL your computer. Thanks, Broadcom. You suck. Bad.

[UPDATE] This is much worse than I'd thought. Not only is my machine completely out of commission, but when I plugged the system hard drive into another machine to simply retrieve my data before having to do a complete new OS (and all programs) install, I found that the VAST MAJORITY of my data has been wiped clean. Music folder, Pictures folder, Videos folder, Documents folder... all GONE.

I would say that the file SetupBtwDownloadSE.exe hosted on the Broadcom site is a virus, not a Bluetooth driver update.

I'm not sure how Broadcom can defend hosting a file that will completely destroy your computer and all your data, especially when they are purporting that it is a Bluetooth driver update. I am astounded (and at a total loss).

...

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

I had the exact same thing in vista 64 bit. Microsoft recomended.

The Invisible said...

I have contacted Broadcom and Microsoft, yet neither will respond. I can't believe they are doing this to people. I am JUST NOW getting over this catastrophe. It just sucks that MS and Broadcom are not only ignoring the problem, but they are RECOMMENDING that people do it, knowing full-well it could obliterate people's computers.

Anonymous said...

My roommate just got hit by this. Same problem. He started updating (using Windows Live Update) with Broadcom's drivers and his icons started disappearing.

I never thought a simple driver install could do anything like this.

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable. It bit me too. I sent an e-mail to Broadcom, but seeing as the problem has existed for MONTHS, I doubt they will do anything now. Can we get this on digg to bring the power of the internet to their face?

The Invisible said...

It's been "dugg" (maybe you're one of the ones?) There's always a digg button at the end of these posts, so you can always easily digg!

Anonymous said...

21.35 uk time 03 may 2010 :Holy crap, I have just had the same thing happen to me,I am running windows 7 ultimate 64bit on a custom built machine, 320 gig seagate,3 gig ram, I wanted to use my phone to transfer images to the pc using Bluetooth, It didnt work so I went to update my Bluetooth driver ( recommended by MS!) waited a while for the driver app to do its thing, it came up with an error code,so I closed the app, all of my desktop icons had disappeared, I then went to my start menu, only to find that ALL of my programs had been deleted, and on top of that nearly all of my data 130gig of music, videos, and pictures have also been deleted, This has frustrated the crap out of me, and all Broadcom can say is to blame it on the company they bought out, this has p*ssed me off senseless, I had pictures of my recently born daughter on my pc,and was yet to do a back up. The last thing I was expecting was for a bluetooth driver to destroy almost all of my data, I am disgusted to say the least, and as a word of advice " steer clear of Broadcom and any of its affiliates. They are no help what so ever, and to top it off there is no way to recover the lost data that I know of. Thanks Broadcom you Ba&^ards.

Anonymous said...

Same problem here: Windows 7 x64. Started Installation, suddenly a message the file data1.cab was not found. Many files from my profile (Desktop, Quick Launch, Temp, ...) seems to be deleted. Windows tells me a configuration change has made the copy invalid.
After a reboot the machine doesn't start, so I don't know what files are deleted on the system.

Anonymous said...

Seams every file on the whole drive the software has access rights and was not locked is deleted. And restoring can be done only file by file.

BIG SHIT!

Anonymous said...

I had the same thing happened twice to me. In my case, I downloaded the Broadcom Bluetooth drivers from Lenovo's site (I have a T400).

It seems that the driver, when trying to uninstall the old driver, starts to recursively delete every file in your system drive. There are some decent ntfs undelete tools out there but recovering from this kind of catastrophe is quite painful to say the least.

Anonymous said...

Add me to the list. I was getting some "bluetooth stack error" so I went to the Broadcomm site to get the latest installer - big mistake!

I thought it was strange when my desktop icons started disappearing.

Luckily my last full backup to external drive was a month ago and I do small updates 2nd hard drive so data loss will be minimal.

Is is sad that some of these posts are 6 months old and people are still getting hit! Even scarier than it happens through Windows live update.


Windows 7 64 bit Premium....

Anonymous said...

I've also just now run into the same bug, though thankfully I caught it while it was rooting through "Program Files", before it reached Users -- and I had backups, anyway.

What's particularly odd is the way it gutted the system... it took out HP ProtectTools suite, while leaving behind the third-party fingerprint software that's embedded within the suite! It also took out Firefox, but not Internet Explorer. It also hit "Boot\BCD", but left behind "AMD". This rules out a simple recursive delete.

Unfortunately, I've been unable to reproduce this failure in a virtual machine -- and it's impossible for them to fix it if we don't have a guaranteed way to reproduce the issue.

Anonymous said...

... Also: take a look in C:\Users\Whatever\AppData\Local\Temp -- there should be a file btwinlog.txt. Check if there's anything relevant in there.
Unfortunately, I deleted my log file.

Anonymous said...

June 3rd Here. I have the file (I kept my partition intact "just in case") and I do see that file. I can see it trying to uninstall the old driver. The last steps before the deletion started happening for me seem to be:
[BINS_SetEnvVariable] Add(0):
BTW_MINOR_UPGRADE = 1

I tried with processexplorer to kill the "upgrade/uninstall" process when I noticed things were not going right but I think I failed to do so because it kept erasing more and more file (I should have just shutdown the machine). I might contact Broadcom over this. It's unbelievable that their driver has such a bug.

June 3rd said...

Still June 3rd here. This is quite funny. I also have a T60 that I recently reformatted to put Windows 7 on. I looked for the bluetooth drivers on the Lenovo site.

http://www-307.ibm.com/pc/support/site.wss/document.do?lndocid=MIGR-70042

Version 6.2.1.1401
(Fix) Improved the uninstallation program.

This is dated June 22nd 2010. Maybe they finally fixed their uninstaller!

Christopher said...

Bloody hell. NO THANKS A million broadcom. The problem had been in existence for over 2 years and its still not been solve.

I was just hit by the same problem. Even my symantec endpoint was deleted. Big joke.

I was updating the driver to 3.0 and saw that it was uninstalling the old Bluetooth software. But I discovered that the folder containing the downloaded update file was empty except for itself. I browse around and discovered more files were missing from my other folders. I smelled a rat and terminated the installation. But it was too late. Icons started to disappear from my desktop leaving only the recycle bin.

I'm not sure if I can recover all my datas. No thanks to you Broadcom! You're a very irresponsible company!

(noou) said...

I've just had the same disastrous experience with drivers downloaded from ASUS official site: http://support.asus.com/download/download.aspx?model=Eee%20PC%201015PEM
Luckily enough, it's a fresh install and I didn't have any data on it... I recovered the OS with ASUS recovery and I will never update the bluetooth driver!

M said...

Just got hit with the same, been getting windows driver error for my broadcom, first site was HP and took the drivers, though 30 mins was a little to long a realised my programs were looking a little empty. I'm hoping I caught it before I got to My Documents as not backup in a while since my potable HDD craped out on me.

Really should have searched a little deeper, just been trying to stop the windows error as Windows seemed to ignore me telling it to ignore the error. Can't believe this is still an issue, that is pretty woeful. Luckily no longer using it for customer work else i'd be in some serious trouble.

GILL said...

Same thing here on hp mini 110 18/01/2012 come on you guys reported problem almost a year ago this is very bad.

Tornedo500 said...

The exact problem happened to me....twice.

I downloaded the driver update from Dell's official website. It claimed to be removing the old driver software, but deleted everything on my PC. I had to reinstall my OS, and a lot of my valuable information was gone.

This happened a second time. I am quite unhappy and frustrated with Broadcom, for releasing such a dangerous update and expecting consumers to download it.

ravi said...

I encountered the same problem few months ago...lost all my data..Thank You BROADCOM!!!

Bluetooth Software said...

I also faced the same problem in windows 7 but by updating windows and installing a specific software for this device fixed my problem.

Alex said...

Same problem at me.At 02/2011 i lost 80 GB of files music,video,photos,desktop icons,programs,etc I recovered only 30 GB in excellent status.Broadcom Bluethooth driver gone bad for my Lenovo U350 laptop.I'm sorry now because i lost important files! I want 100.000.000.000 Dollars because i lost files!

Unknown said...

THIS IS UNBELIEVABLE! I work in IT and friday I was helping a user who's pc was runnign really slow. Previous to this day I had scanned the machine with Microsoft Security Essentials, Malware Bytes, and SAS and the only thing I found was tracker cookies which SAS finds on every pc anyway so no big deal. So I went on to try and figure out the problem. This lenovo bluetooth stuff is like something I have never ever seen before. It completely wiped out everything, docs, desktop, ect. IT's gone. I can't believe this BS.

The Invisible said...

It's still so baffling why this problem erases all the data. Screwing up your computer is one thing, but actually going through the hard drive and erasing data... I can't imagine why it even happens! And it's just appalling that Broadcom still hasn't addressed (or even commented on) the issue.

Unknown said...

Incredible. COMPLETELY SCREWED my windows 7 installation, could not boot, went through tons of hoops at the command prompt, corrupted the registry and the boot sector..and it deleted all appData so that I couldn't even recover POP3 email db files (.eml) from windows Live.

AND I DOWNLOADED THIS FROM THE ASUS WEBSITE, for my netbook model.

Anonymous said...

The slow deletion of everything on my mom's computer happened and to say the least it was utterly terrifying.

Anonymous said...

Just last night, I tried to update my BT all my files are deleted. Did someone already found a solution to recover the files?

Anonymous said...

Just happened to me. MS Win 7 upgrade advisor directed me to the Broadcomm website for upgrade. Notice it was taking too long so snuffed it w/Task Mgr. Too late, thousands of files gone. This is a tort case if I ever saw one. NEGLIGENCE

Anonymous said...

Mine I downloaded it on HP website. This is getting worst. Tried some data recovery but no success. How about you guys? How did you recover your deleted files?

The Invisible said...

I can't believe this issue is STILL affecting people, and that Broadcom hasn't done a DAMN THING about it. This is just INCREDIBLY irresponsible, negligent, and even malicious on their part.

Anonymous said...

Effing betch! Thia frigging thing happened to me just now! I really dont care about the programa, music and movies. just one folder i has with pictures, messages and notes of a girl and now its all gonnnnnnneee!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

So there is no way to get the data back?

The Invisible said...

No easy ways. Best bet is to NOT use your computer until you run some data recovery software. When things are deleted from your computer, they are actually still on the harddrive until the space where the files were is written over with new data. Chances are the Broadcom install IS writing data over the files it's deleting, but your only hope is that the data is still there (behind the curtain), and you can recover it with data recovery software (you'll need to Google for your various options here).

GmanPsycho said...

Seriously Broadcom? I am having this very same issue. Ran an update and now I'm running a file recovery. It's July 27, 2012 and this has yet to be resolved?!? Really?!? This is absolutely asinine.

Anonymous said...

Omg!!! I just purchased the Targus micro-usb bluetooth adapter and when I installed the Broadcom software that came with it, it totally wrecked my system!!!

The Invisible said...

It's been almost THREE YEARS since I first posted this (and contacted Broadcom multiple times regarding the issue). How in the WORLD can this still be going on? Why the F*CK have they not address this MASSIVELY problematic and WILDLY irresponsible issue?!?!?!?

Anonymous said...

Anyone want to file a class action? I am still trying to recover files from the one directory that wasn't backed up on my system. Luckily I got 50% of them back from the mem card they came from. I just got hit with this on two Lenovo systems earlier this month (July 2012). One was my main laptop, the other was a FRESH install of windows and updates from Lenovo. How can this still be out there?

aurora_borealis said...

Same thing happened to me too:

http://forums.lenovo.com/t5/IdeaPad-Y-U-V-and-Z-series/Bluetooth-driver-installation-deleted-all-my-files-and-windows/m-p/832049#U832049

Alexandru said...

Never will buy anything from Lenovo I see that many have problems with Bluetooth driver from Broadcom And I lost about 100 GB of files on 8 February 2011: (I am very upset that we recovered very few files in good condition!

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU BROADCOM FOR MESSING UP MY COMPUTER AND ITS FILES!!! HAVE MORE BAD COMMENTS TO COME AND MORE POWER FUCKING SHIT TO YOUR COMPANY!!!!

P.S.: because of that, i need to reformat and clean install my OS..

Anonymous said...

Same here. Tried to uninstall Broadcom Bluetooth Software because it didn't work. After reboot, Windows won't start anymore. Booted Linux and it showed up, that 2/3 of data in my windows partition is GONE!
I'm working with computers for almost 20 years now and I'm a system administrator for a big school network but this is the biggest fucking thing I've ever seen!!! And I can't believe that Broadcom isn't responding to this!???? WTF!!!!? Why can they still do business at all???

Anonymous said...

I also had a client have this problem just recently (early 2013). While I do not know if she downloaded the driver from the official website, she is kindof computer savy, not a fool. But exact same thing happened, and I could not, for the life of me, understand how a driver update could do this. As an IT professional, this is beyond outragous. I was about to call the company and raise as much hell as I could when....

IN ORDER TO RECOVER YOUR FILES I had a very very successful experience with Recuva - I was able to recover almost all my documents, all for free. I should note that while I did take out the affected drive and connect it externally to another computer (where I installed and ran Recuva), the program tells you to increase your chances of success you should install and run it from a separate computer or partition that what was affected.

SERIOUSLY, THANK GOD FOR RECUVA
...and fuck Broadcomm

Anonymous said...

Is this problem still unsolved? I am bit a late in discovering this blog because I had already installed this troublesome update!! :(

The Invisible said...

Unfortunately, as you have found, it's still a problem. I have NO IDEA why Broadcom will not address the issue!

Anonymous said...

I tried uninstalling the drivers but that wouldn't get uninstalled and everything seems to be fine. The update installer didn't proceed stating that an older version of the drivers is identified in your system I even tried restarting the PC and it did restart last night. Now I am really worried whether my system will boot again after reading your blog!
I think we need to publicize the comments on this blog to everyone so that people don't commit this mistake! being an IT admin I have sent out a warning email to all our staffs to restrain from updating the bluetooth drivers from Broadcom!

Anonymous said...

I run Windows 7 64 bit and with trial and error have found the broadcom bluetooth update makes firefox, google and internet explorer hang when you try to enter data into a field. No idea how but using system restore narrowed it down to this recent update. I have hidden it from windows update and hope I never need to use it.

angryasfook said...

Yeah cunts just got me too wish I come accross this thread beforehand. I am stuck away from home with no system disc or fuck all. Pretty damn pissed off broadcom. Complete pack of bastard s grrrr

water2112 said...

I'M REALLY SO PISSED OFF ABOUT BROADCOM'S BLUETOOTH SHIT NOW!!! IT HAPPEN TO ME TWICE NOW, (First was 2012 I think), FCK!!!! I SWEAR I WILL NEVER EVER TOUCH THAT FCKING DRIVER UPDATE AGAIN!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh, you gotta be fuckin' shittin' me! My whole perfectly mainteined netbook has just gone to shit! What is that? A virus? Maybe NSA attack? Retrieved all the info then erased the data to hide it? How the hell is this even possible? No antivirus can detect it or what?

Anonymous said...

There's only one way out -> do not ever use any OS from Microsoft! Use Linux, and your data always survive! :-)

Anonymous said...

Its not bad luck you folks got hit by , its bad maintenance. I Gotta agree with the last poster.

Just don't use Windows™ for anything important - too prone to malware/viruses.

Choose a good reliable operating system based on Linux or *BSD, and choose one with a reliable community that maintains the operating system correctly.

I would suggest LinuxMint or ArchLinux as good choices to switch to.

Blue Entity said...

What really annoys me with this driver problem is not the fact, that such an epic bug can pass the QA of Broadcom, Lenovo & Co. Really frustrating is the fact, that this issue is known for several YEARS now and still hits people (like me) out of nowhere! A simple preventive patch rolled out via System Update functions could save so many people!

Here are my two cents on this topic:
http://bluepings.wordpress.com/2014/03/01/broadcom-bluetooth-driver-uninstall-disaster/

Anonymous said...

WELL GUESS WHAT?? my Targus micro-usb adapter installed with Broadcomm and worked! NOTHING DELETED although it is really annoying this happened to u guys :/

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the heads up guys!!!

namethattech said...

Ugh. Just got hit by this insane installer today. Downloaded it from Dell for my N5010. The first time through, the installer failed near finish with some message I don't remember. It rolled back. I rebooted and tried again. This time it hung for 11 minutes (according to the log) on uninstalling Bluetooth files which was odd because they would have been uninstalled with the first attempt. I saw folders collapsing in explorer but didn't think much of it because some things do that. It wasn't until the installer said it couldn't find the data1.cab file that I realized the installer just whacked everything on the drive except the locked files. Still too annoyed to put words to this.

The Invisible said...

I can't believe this still exists. Wipes out people's entire computers and Broadcom has done NOTHING about it. Blows. My. Mind.

CH said...

I understand this is not the Western Wall but I guess it might be interesting for other people to know that this horror STILL EXISTS. It happened to me as I wanted to update the Bluetooth driver from Sony's website ... I lost everything.

Anonymous said...

I had a similar experience. I had to do a factory reset for the laptop. Everything gone. F***ing hate broadcam. F*** them in the eye sockets.

Winston Mitchell said...

Norton IS reports a virus infection.

Anonymous said...

I was just going to download the driver from their site. The download was super slow and while googling I a jumped to this blog. Thank God I am saved!

The Invisible said...

You SERIOUSLY dodged a bullet there! [wink]

Anonymous said...

OK Its sad that all this happened BUT what DRIVERS do we have to install to use it. Everyone is talking about how bad it was but no one has said THE CORRECT DRIVERS ARE HERE! Please if anyone got it working on Windows 10 Or Windows 8.1 Please post the download links

Thanks in advance
The DJ

Anonymous said...

So, " I have NO IDEA why Broadcom will not address the issue! " - well, because you bunch of idiots KEEP PAYING THE COMPANIES THAT KEEP PAYING BROADCOM, perhaps?
Sorry to 'troll' but it's the way these arsehole companies get their power, and a MAJOR problem with Capitalism (obviously). That cause-and-effect are hidden and separated by sub-contracting things out to hidden companies. We've got to start making EFFECTIVE protest. Not being so weak. Add-up the total suffering from this kind of incident. Thousands and thousands of hours of pain for people. For the lack of ONE HOUR of code-improvement in the installer. Or less.
Isn't it worth it, doing something like a Class-Action Lawsuit? Or just send a bag of dog shit to all of Broadcom's offices with a note as to why you felt the need to do this? Whatever. But don't do NOTHING.