Microsoft not to Blame for Black Screen of Death

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Microsoft has taken the time to outline the fact that it doesn’t believe that the “black screen of death” plaguing some Windows users is to do with its latest round of security updates, as had originally been guessed.

Instead, the official word from Microsoft is that the black-screen issue certainly exists but isn’t necessarily related to its security updates. Instead, it says that it has found reports that recent reports indicating that the black-screen issue is a result of changes made to the registry to be inaccurate and that none of its security updates behave in the manner described by the initial reports.

Instead, Microsoft’s security response communications posted to Microsoft’s Security Response Centre blog,

“While these reports weren’t brought to us directly, from our research into them, it appears they’re saying that our security updates are making permission changes in the registry to the value for the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINES\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Shell key.

We’ve conducted a comprehensive review of the November Security Updates, the Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool, and the non-security updates we released through Windows Update in November. That investigation has shown that none of these updates make any changes to the permissions in the registry. Thus, we don’t believe the updates are related to the ‘black screen’ behaviour described in these reports.”

The post goes on to outline the fact that Microsoft hasn’t seen the black-screen issue as something cropping up across as broad a segment of Microsoft’s userbase as would be expected if the issue were to do with Microsoft’s own patching.

Prevx, which had authored the original report stating that Microsoft’s security updates were to blame for the whole affair, has since issued another report and apologised to Microsoft, saying that the issue has been a challenge to identify.

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