We’ve received questions about public reports that customers might be experiencing system issues with the November Security Updates (which some are referring to “Black Screen” issues). We’ve investigated these reports and found that our November Security Updates are not making changes to the system that these reports say are responsible for these issues.

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_MACHINE\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” behavior described in these reports.

We’ve also checked with our worldwide Customer Service and Support organization, and they’ve told us they’re not seeing “black screen” behavior as a broad customer issue. Because these reports were not brought to us directly, it’s impossible to know conclusively what might be causing a “black screen” in those limited instances where customers have seen it. However, we do know that “black screen” behavior is associated with some malware families such as Daonol.

This underscores the importance of our guidance to customers to contact our Customer Service and Support group any time they think they’re affected by malware or are experiencing issues with security updates.  This enables us to determine what might be happening and take steps to help customers by documenting new malware families in our MMPC malware encyclopedia or documenting known issues in our security bulletins and the supporting Knowledge Base articles.

I hope this helps to clarify,

Christopher

*Postings are provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.*