While customers are waiting for the first service pack release for Microsoft’s fastest selling operating system in history, the company is already hard at work pushing the platform forward. Customers no longer have to wait for the first major upgrade for Windows 7 in order to boost the OS on the next stage in its evolution. Microsoft is instead providing updates designed to resolve problems identified in RTM Build 7600 ahead of the delivery of Windows 7 Service Pack 1. Case in point: two updates are currently up for grabs from Microsoft, both designed to improve the stability and reliability of Windows 7 and of Windows Server 2008 R2, namely KB 974431 and KB 977074. Fact is that the Redmond company is only bringing revisions to both KB 974431 and KB 977074, refreshes already served to customers via Windows Update and the Microsoft Download Center. The latest revision to KB 977074, for example, was offered on January 27. Similarly, a revised version of KB 974431 was offered to Windows 7 users on February 2nd. Customers that feel comfortable with accessing the stability and reliability updates for Windows 7 via the Microsoft Download Center and deploying the refreshes manually will be able to find the download links below.
KB 974431 can be grabbed via the following links, in accordance with the flavors of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 users are running: 32-bit (x86) Windows 7 RTM, for 64-bit (x64) Windows 7 RTM and for 64-bit (x64) Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM. At the same time, KB 977074 is available for download here: 32-bit (x86-based) versions of Windows 7, 64-bit (x64) Windows 7, x64 Windows Server 2008 R2 and IA-64 Windows Server 2008 R2.
KB 977074 fixes the following issues:
“- Keyboard function keys or keyboard shortcuts, such as mute or calculator, may not work correctly.
- The notification icon for an application may be moved or lost when the executable application is updated.
- On a computer that is running Windows 7, you configure the Screen Saver Settings to display the logon screen on resume. Additionally, you configure the computer to go to sleep. However, the computer may not go to sleep after the screen saver starts. Instead, a black screen is displayed. This problem causes the operating system to stop responding. You must restart the computer by holding down the power button.”
KB 974431 fixes the following issues:
“- When you view a PDF file that was created by using a 2007 Microsoft Office system document, the PDF file is displayed on the screen correctly. However, when the document is printed, some characters are missing. This problem occurs in fonts such as Calibri, Cambria, Courier New, or Gabriola in which character combinations such as “fi,” “ti,” “fl,” and other combinations are frequently presented as ligatures.
- In certain scenarios, an Emergency Alert System (EAS) message does not automatically tune to the appropriate channel in Windows Media Center.
- You connect a secondary monitor to a computer that is running Windows 7. When the computer resumes from hibernation, a black screen is displayed.
- In certain scenarios, the Windows 7 Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP) diagnostic information settings are configured incorrectly for Windows Explorer. Only those users who are enrolled in the Windows 7 CEIP will be affected by this part of the update. This update limits the diagnostic information that can be collected by the CEIP.
- You put an x86-based computer that does not have Physical Address Extension (PAE) enabled into hibernation. However, the computer does not enter hibernation correctly. When you try to resume the computer from hibernation, a black screen is displayed. This issue does not affect x64-based or Itanium-based computers, or computers that have the Data Execution Prevention (DEP) feature enabled.
- A problem in Windows 7 affects the playback of certain media files in Windows Media Player when Windows Media Player is started from Windows Internet Explorer. Only those users whose media associations were changed incorrectly will be affected by this part of the update.
- On a computer that is running Windows 7, you use Internet Explorer to open the certificate enrollment Web page and to install an end entity certificate. However, the installation fails. This issue occurs if the certificate chain for the new certificate cannot be built, or if the root certification authority (CA) has not first been installed in the Trusted Roots on the computer.”