Windows 10 version 1903 should just work out of the box, right? Wrong

New Windows 10 setup bug. What does "Something went wrong but you can try again. MSA" mean?

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Microsoft declared Windows 10 version 1903 'ready for business' in September but the company still has some basic bugs to work through before it delivers a pain-free experience when setting up a PC.   

If you're setting up a Windows 10 PC or have reset it, there's a chance you could run into a cryptic message from Microsoft that's caused by the setup process on a Windows installation that hasn't been previously connected to the internet. 

The issue affects Windows 10 version 1903 and, if it happens, the user will see a screen with black bars at the top and bottom with a blue screen in between that simply says: "Something went wrong. But you can try again. MSA." There's also a 'Try again' button at the bottom of the screen.

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It's happened to enough users setting up a PC with Windows 10 version 1903 for Microsoft to post a notice on the Windows Support site.  

The issue affects the Out-of-box Experience, or OOBE, Microsoft's terminology for the device setup, which includes selecting the language and keyboard, configuring the Cortana assistant, and configuring network settings.   

Microsoft offers a vague explanation for what went wrong for users who see the message.  

"The Out-of-box Experience (OOBE) consists of a series of screens that require customers to accept the license agreement, log in with, or sign up for a Microsoft Account and helps you set up your new Windows installation," the company explains.  

"During OOBE, you have the option to connect to the internet but are not required to do so. You might receive this error the first time you connect to the internet on a new device or new install of Windows that has not previously connected to the internet during the Out-of-box Experience (OOBE)." 

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If you're setting up a Windows 10 PC or have reset it, there's a chance you could run into this cryptic message from Microsoft. 

Image: Microsoft

Microsoft offers a workaround but warns that users should save any work they have before doing it. 

If there's no work to lose, the steps involve pressing Ctrl+Alt+Delete keys and then selecting the 'power' button in the lower right corner of the screen and then hit 'restart'. 

If there is work to save, it's a bit trickier. You'd need to press Ctrl+Shift+F10 and then select Ctrl+Shift+Esc to open Task Manager. If Task Manager doesn't open, then you're supposed to repeat Ctrl+Shift+F10. 

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After this, you should see the Details tab, but if you don't, then you should select More Details in the lower left. And then you should select the Details tab. Finally, you would need to find the wwahost.exe process. 

"Right-click or long-press on that process and select End task from the context menu," Microsoft instructs. 

"Once you have completed all the steps in either of these methods, you should not receive this error again."

The good news is that Microsoft is "working on a resolution and will provide an update in an upcoming release". However, the company does not say when the fix to the out-of-box experience will arrive. 

More on Microsoft and Windows 10 updates

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