Text in Windows 10 apps and Cortana not visible

A few days ago my Lenovo Tablet that has been running Windows 10 for some time went through the its Windows 10 upgrade. Ever since Cortana and a number of other apps have lost some or all of their menu text rendering them almost useless. I have tried rebooting, reloading the apps. Can anyone help me figure out where to start trying to fix this peculiar problem?
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Rob4077Asked:
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McKnifeConnect With a Mentor Commented:
The upgrade itself cannot be responsible as most of us have it installed, but don't see the symptoms. So it could be interfering (being incompatible) with a 3rd party software that you run, but which?

Easiest way out would be an image backup of a working state. Anyone should have that.
If you haven't, analysis is hard. We can try and use monitoring tools like procmon to find out, what is going on, but hat would require an expert to use it, alone. If you don't even know procmon, the best advice probably is to reinstall windows and learn from this incident and start using image backups to overcome weird errors like this. (I am caling it "weird", because normally each and any windows' internal error would be fixed using the repair installation process)
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regmigrantConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I had a similar issue with Cortana on one of the Preview builds for the Windows Insider programme, it turned out to be an inconsistency between Region, Locale, language and keyboard - all of which have to be absolutely consistent (and supported by Cortana) and the upgrade had re-implemented default 'US English' in some of them.

I had to go through each of the relevant setting and revert to US English (the base language), uninstalling any additional language support, once they were ALL at the default I rebooted and Cortana started working again. Then I went back through and put them all back to the language I started with - without rebooting until ALL were changed.

After a reboot Cortana was back and remembered previous training
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Hi regmigrant, and thanks for your suggestions.

I have removed the added Australian language pack setting the keyboard back to US English. It is still set to Australia as the region - do I need to change that too? I rebooted and Cortana has improved but still not right. Even the Play Store is missing information (see attached image).

Any other suggestions? Or any ideas where I can go to get this working?
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McKnifeCommented:
An easy way that most certainly solves it, would be to do an inplace upgrade installation.
Therefore, you should download the media creation tool from here: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=691209
That update takes long to download and on slow hard drives about an hour to install. It should offer to keep files and settings by default, so it is effectively a repair installation.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Thanks for your suggestions. McKnife, your suggestion has almost saved the tablet from the rubbish bin. I did a complete reload of Windows using your link. Cortana menus are now visible and the unit seems surprisingly fast. Unfortunately many of the other menus are still not visible including, Parts of the Windows Store.

I am going to do one more Windows reinstall in the desperate hope that it will fix it this time but I don't hold out much hope. Frustrating to think that it was working before the last update and now Windows have updated it to the point of failure.

Any other suggestions would be much appreciated.
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McKnifeCommented:
Create a test user and verify if it's reproducible for any user or just yours.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
I am logged in as administrator. Are you suggesting it may be a problem with the Administrator account?
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McKnifeCommented:
It could be profile corruption. That would not be due to administrative rights but could happen to any profile. A problem frequently seen. Take a test user.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Tried changing from on line account to local account. No difference. Tried creating a new account, went through the setup and no difference on the new account. When I select Cortana, for example, the icons on the left appear momentarily then disappear. If I go into Play store some of the sections are missing.

All this after a second fresh install of Windows 10 and no subsequent changes to my profile. Before the big upgrade all was working well.

Any suggestions for a next step?
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Thanks to everyone for your suggested solutions.

I don't have an image backup - my fault. Not that I even know how to do an image backup. I can't even do a system restore as it wasn't turned on for some reason. This unit has been kept as original as possible to avoid problems. If I ever surf the net, try additional software, etc it's done on other machines. I rarely even read an email on this tablet.

At any rate, I have some meetings this week that I need to take the unit to and enough of it is working to make it usable. After that I will try a complete reload of Windows 10, wiping all data and apps in the process. If that doesn't fix the problem then it will find its way to the rubbish bin.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Just thought I would provide an update, especially if someone else out there has a Lenovo 3679_4EM tablet. It's a very slow little beast  but up until the last Windows 10 upgrade has done what I needed.

I have now just finished completely reloading Windows 10 and wiped all apps and programs. After the load, the only thing I did was configure it to create a restore point and created one. I am  now convinced that this unit is not capable of running on Windows 10 and I should have left with with it's original Windows 8.1 setup. After doing the upgrade I opened play store and some of the text is still not visible. If I touch it, the text sometimes becomes visible and may even remain visible (but not always). The same applies to Cortana. Basically this has rendered the unit of no value, unless someone knows a trick of some sort that may fix it.
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McKnifeCommented:
I have not seen a single machine built in the last 5 years, that was not capable of running windows 10.
The Lenovo website does not offer drivers for ten, but that does not mean a lot. Missing elements in cortana are not machine related. At best, they are related to the graphics driver. Update it. Look what graphics device that is and go to the manufacturer's site (for example: intel hd graphics) and download a win10 driver.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
I tried the Lenovo web site, downloaded and installed their Solution Centre program and run all the tests but no problems were found.
I tried updating the driver for both the display adapter "Intel(R) graphics and media accelerator" and the Monitor "Wide viewing angle & High density Flexview Display 1368X768", (allowing the web to find the best driver) but it makes no difference.
I don't know how to find out who the manufacturer of the "Wide viewing angle & High density Flexview Display 1368X768" display to see if they have a Win 10 driver.
When I go into the Lenovo web site for my unit the only two configurations are Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 so if it's not Windows then it's Lenovo or  the screen manufacturer who aren't supporting Windows 10.

I have no idea where to go from here
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McKnifeCommented:
You could try and change the display driver to the generic "microsoft basic display adapter". Maybe it is a funny problem with the intel driver.
->open device manager, doublick the intel hd graphics adapter, select update driver, do it manually and select the microsoft driver.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Do I replace the "Intel(R) graphics and media accelerator" or "Wide viewing angle & High density Flexview Display 1368X768",?
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McKnifeCommented:
The graphics driver is the intel one. The other is for the monitor but it has no relevance for this question and can be left alone.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Tried twice but just locks monitor forcing me to do a hard reboot
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McKnifeCommented:
After changing the driver to microsoft basic display adapter, the monitor locks? Astounding. I see no reason for that behavior. What happens if you choose just to uninstall the intel driver (via right click option in device manager)?
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Rob4077Author Commented:
I called the company that services computers at work to get a quote. They told me they've seen this several times before on pc's upgraded from win 8 and 8.1 and emailed me a link to a replacement new unit on eBay. Maybe I should just give in. What do you think?
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Rob4077Author Commented:
I tried uninstalling the driver and it locked even faster.
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McKnifeCommented:
The upgrade does not do anything to your hardware, I wonder what those guys are talking about. But since it worked for you before on win10 and now does not work even on a clean installation, maybe a hardware error coincided with the latest win10 update.

I leave it up to you since I never saw symptoms like that before.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Thank you very, very much for your patience. I think they were saying the time effort and cost of funding the cause wasn't worth it. They reckon upgraded machines often encounter problems and are discarded as a result. Maybe it's time to say farewell to this unit.
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McKnifeCommented:
Ok, but definitely don't dump it. Sell it to someone that will use it with win8.1.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
So how do I get win 8.1 back?
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McKnifeCommented:
You can download a win8.1 ISO from Microsoft. Do you know how to get the key and install an OS?
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Afraid not.
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McKnifeCommented:
The key will be embedded in the bios. Do you know whether it came with win8 or win8.1?
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Rob4077Author Commented:
The machine came with 8 and I then upgraded to 8.1 followed by 10
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McKnifeCommented:
Is it home or pro? If pro, I have a way for you that is quite easy.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Its pro
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McKnifeCommented:
Ok. Use my previous link and download the ISO for win8.1 pro.
Installing it will only succeed with a key. If it does not accepts yours, use the legal microsoft generic key:
GCRJD-8NW9H-F2CDX-CCM8D-9D6T9
Note: it cannot be used to activate windows, only to install it. Afterwards, activate it with your key.

To get your key, you'll need to extract it from the bios: https://itsolutionsblog.net/3-ways-to-extract-the-windows-8-product-key/ ->method 1.

Afterwards, you'll need to install some drivers, I guess. Those are found at the manufacturer's support/driver site.
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Rob4077Author Commented:
Thank you so much, McKnife, I really appreciate your very kind assistance on this one.
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McKnifeCommented:
You are welcome
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