Geeks2U Promise
We guarantee you'll love our fast, friendly service - or we'll refund your money.  
133,572 Happy Customers & Counting
Need tech support?
1300 769 448
Extended hours, 7 days a week
Home  /  geekspeak  /  Microsoft reverses its position on Windows 7 updates in the weirdest possible way

Microsoft reverses its position on Windows 7 updates in the weirdest possible way

Typically, when a company announces that a tech product is no longer supported, it’s because it doesn’t intend to provide any support for that product. It’s too old, it’s too costly to keep providing updates, or the userbase is so small that there really doesn’t seem to be much point anyway.

Microsoft certainly gave plenty of warning recently that it was going to cease providing software updates and support for Windows 7, having formally ceased support and updates as of the 14th of January.

Which of course didn’t mean that Windows 7 PCs erupted in a shower of sparks and smoke as though this was some Hollywood movie; for any given Windows 7 PC user the world continued to spin as usual; you were just taking ever larger risks with a Windows 7 PC going online, because any software problems that ensued with Windows 7 would never be patched. There were still plenty of Windows 7 PCs running at the deadline, which makes them an appealing target for malware writers looking to make a quick buck from compromised computers.

That would, in theory, include any bugs that might have snuck in with Microsoft’s last set of actual Windows 7 updates too.

This happens more often than you might think, by the way. Modern operating systems run on literally billions of lines of code, so patching out, say, a bug that eats up memory more than it should can sometimes lead to unexpected results – bugs, in other words – affecting other areas of performance.

Still, Microsoft said it would stop providing updates for Windows 7, so that’s it, right?

Well, as it turns out, not precisely. Microsoft is set to release one, presumably-final-but-who-really-knows-now update for Windows 7 systems. However, it’s not because of a bug that affects security (as far as we know), or even one that eats up all your memory.

Frankly, it’s a weird little bug for Microsoft to commit to fixing.

According to Microsoft’s knowledge base, the very last Windows 7 security update, released on the 14th of January 2019 has a display bug in it. Specifically – and it’s very specific – if you’re using a desktop wallpaper that sets the chosen image to “stretch” (as distinct from fill, tile, center or fit) then your desktop wallpaper might simply display as a black image.

That’s it. It won’t crash your PC; it won’t make your icons disappear. It basically just won’t work, unless of course you flick to some other screen-filling option under Windows 7.

Now, presumably Microsoft must have worked out most of what makes this particular bug problematic, and it must be easy-ish to fix, because it’s said it is “working on a resolution and will provide an update in an upcoming release, which will be released to all customers running Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1.”

Which rather extraordinarily means that it will in fact deliver an update for Windows 7 users after saying it wouldn’t, for an issue which is almost unbelievably minor.

Now, if I were you, I wouldn’t take this as an open floodgate for future updates around much more serious issues. It’s still smarter to start thinking about upgrading to Windows 10, either via a software update or new hardware, because Windows 7 is still potentially open to threats, known and unknown over time.


Recent News

Apple recently announced a slew of new hardware to tempt consumers with at a “virtual” streamed launch event it called “California Streaming”. The headline act was without doubt a very much expected upgrade to its iPhone lines, bringing the iPhone 13 family to market. Every year, roughly around September or October, you can expect a

Do you ever get tired of rolling your mouse, fiddling with your trackpad and running through tabs in order to switch between apps, jump into your spotlight search or close a page? How about finding a specific file, locking your computer or any of the other dozens of functions you need your computer to accomplish

A recent US court ruling could lead to some significant changes in the way that you pay for apps and subscriptions on mobile devices, tablets, and computers in the future. Epic Games, makers of the popular (and highly lucrative) video game Fortnite offered that game on Apple devices including its iPhone and iPad lines, but

It was no secret that Microsoft was going to release the next version of Windows later this year. I’ve already written up my early impressions of Windows 11. That was based on the beta version while I waited for Microsoft to press the big red “go” button for actual consumer availability. Microsoft recently announced when

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Learn about the precautions we are taking and our new contactless pick-up and remote service options. Read More
Get help setting up your home office or homework area today. Learn More