50,000 black screens of death and counting. Image: PrevX.
As PC owners continue to monitor the situation surrounding the ominous ‘black screen of death’ boot error that recently began circulating, Microsoft has assured Windows users the mystery affliction is not connected to its November security updates and that the problem “is not a broad customer issue.”
However, despite Microsoft’s assurances to the contrary, the definition of what qualifies as a ‘broad customer issue’ has been thrown into doubt after security firm PrevX – which offers a workable fix for the boot glitch – revealed some 50,000 users have downloaded its utility in the last week.
“Following the issue of our fix, which continues to receive significant downloads, we believe that this problem is still affecting a very large number of users in a very diverse range of Windows environments,” outlined PrevX CEO Mel Morris in a company blog post.
As news of the problem began to surface, PrevX hit the headlines after it initially appeared to dump blame at Microsoft’s door. However, the company swiftly backtracked via an apologetic blog post that supported Microsoft’s innocence and shifted blame towards an unknown malware infection.
“The emergence of this issue coincided with the recent set of Windows updates, therefore our investigations were focused on identifying if any of these could have been the cause of the problem,” said Morris.
“Regrettably, it is clear that our original blog post has been taken out of context and may have caused inconvenience for Microsoft. This was never our intention and we have already apologized to Microsoft,” he added.
Believed to be affecting users of Windows 7, Windows Vista and Windows XP, the ‘black screen of death’ bug seemingly rears its ugly head during the system boot process, leaving the user staring at nothing but a blank screen until they opt to initiate a complete re-start.