Microsoft released a final cumulative update for the company's Windows 7 operating system on the January 2020 Patch Day before support ended officially.
KB4534310 fixes several security issues on machines running Windows 7 including one that is rated critical.
Reports came in after the release of the update that the wallpaper on patched Windows 7 devices displayed as black.
Microsoft acknowledged the issue recently on the official KB4534310 support page stating:
After installing KB4534310, your desktop wallpaper might display as black when set to Stretch.
A workaround is provided by Microsoft. According to the information presented, the wallpaper is displayed as black only if the display mode is set to stretch.
Microsoft suggests that affected users either use a different view mode, e.g. fill, fit, or center, or select a wallpaper that matches the resolution of the display.
To mitigate the issue, you can do one of the following:
Set your custom image to an option other than Stretch, such as Fill, Fit, Tile, or Center.
Choose a custom wallpaper that matches the resolution of your desktop.
Administrators and users should not have any trouble using the workaround to resolve the black wallpaper issue. One option is to use an image editor to stretch the wallpaper to the native resolution of the device and use that edited image as the desktop background going forward.
Update: Microsoft appears to have had a change of heart. The workaround will be made available to all Windows 7 systems regardless of whether ESU is active or not:
We are 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.
A patch is being worked on according to Microsoft, but it will only be made available to Extended Security Updates subscribers. We are working on a resolution and will provide an update in an upcoming release for organizations who have purchased Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU). Extended Security Updates are only available for Enterprise and business customers. Microsoft's stance is quite rigorous in regards to the patch; while support for Windows 7 ended officially on January 14, 2020, it was Microsoft's own patch that caused the issue in first place. It would not cost Microsoft an arm and leg to release the patch for all Windows 7 devices and not exclusively for Extended Security Updates subscribers considering that the patch is developed anyway for ESU devices already. The issue may not be critical but many customers would have probably preferred if Microsoft would have ended support without the unpatched issue.
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