Microsoft releases KB5003698 update preview to fix blurry text and VPN issues in Windows 10

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Ahead of next month's Patch Tuesday, Microsoft has released a preview of the KB5003698 update for Windows 10. The patch takes the operating system up to build 18363.1645, and although it is a non-security update it still addresses numerous issues that users have been experiencing.

Key among the improvements is a fix for the blurry text issue introduced by the KB5001391 update earlier this month. Other changes include addressing a problem with AppLocker, VPN issues, and fixing a problem that caused playback issues with FLAC files after editing metadata.

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Preview releases of updates like this are useful for Microsoft as it gives the company a chance to test its patches on a slightly wider audience. And while the update is not necessarily ready for a full release -- there is a change the patched will be patched if problems are found with it -- it does give people affected by the particular issues it addresses to access a solution without having to wait for the regular update release date to roll around.

Microsoft shares the following list of key changes and improvements in the update:

  • Addresses an issue that prevents sorting from working properly when using multiple versions of National Language Support (NLS) sorting.
  • Addresses a performance issue in the MultiByteToWideChar() function that occurs when it is used in a non-English locale.
  • Addresses an issue that fails to properly manage touch input related memory before a user session ends.
  • Addresses an issue that results in outdated group membership listings. This issue occurs because the Group Policy service (GPSVC) makes infrequent updates to the Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) session. As a result, this slows the propagation of changes the Active Directory (AD) administrator makes to user or group membership.
  • Addresses an issue that causes Windows to stop working when it uses AppLocker to validate a file that has multiple signatures. The error is 0x3B.
  • Addresses an issue with the Set-RuleOption PowerShell command that fails to provide the option for the Windows Defender Application Control (WDAC) policy to treat files signed with an expired certificate as unsigned.
  • Addresses an issue that might cause BitLocker to go into recovery mode after updating the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) firmware. This occurs when the "Interactive logon: Machine account lockout Threshold" policy is set and there were incorrect password attempts.
  • Addresses an issue that prevents certain screen reader apps from running when Hypervisor-protected code integrity (HVCI) is enabled.
  • Addresses an issue that causes Windows to generate many AppLocker or SmartLocker success events.
  • Improves the accuracy and efficiency of sensitive data analysis in the Microsoft 365 Endpoint data loss prevention (DLP) Classification Engine.
  • Addresses an issue with the Internet Key Exchange (IKE) VPN service on remote access server (RAS) servers. Periodically, users cannot connect a VPN to the server over the IKE protocol. This issue might start several hours or days after restarting the server or restarting the IKEEXT service. Some users can connect while many others cannot connect because the service is in DoS Protection mode, which limits incoming connection attempts.
  • Addresses an issue that might cause a VPN to fail after renewing a user auto-enrolled certificate. The error message is, "There are no more files".
  • Adds new glyphs to the InkFree.ttf font family for European languages.
  • Addresses an issue that causes a loss of audio when you connect a second external monitor.
  • Addresses a metadata encoding issue that causes Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) music files to become unplayable if you change their title, artist, or other metadata. For more information, see FLAC encoded music file is corrupted when metadata is edited in Windows Explorer.
  • Adds support for the .hif file extension for High Efficiency Image File (HEIF) images.
  • Addresses an issue that causes Remote Desktop sessions to stop responding while the User Datagram Protocol (UDP) is enabled.
  • Adds support for the USBTest and MeasurementClass.
  • Addresses an issue in Adamsync.exe that affects the syncing of large Active Directory subtrees.
  • Addresses an error that occurs when the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) bind cache is full, and the LDAP client library receives a referral.
  • Addresses a redirector stop error that is caused by a race condition that occurs when the system deletes binding objects when connections close.
  • Addresses an issue that might cause a stop error when you run SmbConnectStress for a prolonged duration.
  • Addresses an issue that prevents users from setting or querying disk quotas on the C drive.
  • Addresses an issue that causes blurry text on the news and interests button on the Windows taskbar for some display configurations.
  • Addresses an issue with Search box graphics on the Windows taskbar that occurs if you use the taskbar’s context menu to turn off News and interests. This graphics issue is especially visible when using dark mode.

More information about KB5003698 is available here.

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