Good news for anyone who's had trouble installing Microsoft Flight Simulator: a new patch has fixed a number of bugs which interfered with installation. Bad news if you are one of those people: to benefit from these fixes, it's recommended that you uninstall MSFS and reinstall from scratch. Oh no.
Version 188.8.131.52 hit last night. As the patch notes explain, its fixes problems including five different bugs that could screw up installation. "However, if you have experienced installation issues, we strongly advise you to do a clean install of Microsoft Flight Simulator," the devs recommend. They give separate instructions for the Steam and Microsoft Store versions, which broadly explain to use the uninstaller then manually go in and delete some files. Then you're ready to start over with that huge download and that chuffing musical loop (we can recommend some alternative songs).
To be clear, you don't need to reinstall if you've already got the game up and running. This is only for installation problems.
They do also seem open to the possibility that maybe they've not caught all the installation problems, and so are asking people still suffering to send in some diagnostic info.
The patch also fixes some crashes, most notably when different controllers are disconnected. And optimisation-wise, the notes note "The performance of the title has been improved when the Display name plate option is set to active".
While official efforts focus on technical fixes, fans are filling holes in the content, cleverly using Google Maps to replace cruddy auto-generated landmarks with high-quality versions. I still think the glitches creating giant monoliths and roads running up buildings are a delight that no one should ever fix.