There's been a relatively quiet Patch Tuesday fallout this month, which is good. But, that doesn't mean we're completely out of the woods.
One specific update, KB3046002, is causing some installation issues. By now, if you're running Windows 7 x64 in your environment, you've probably experienced the issue already. If not, here's what happens…
The installation requires a reboot and when the computer comes back up it either gets stuck on the Stage 3 of 3 updating screen, or boots up completely but shows a blank startup screen with no logon option.
The fix is a simple one. Force the computer to shut off completely – whether that means using a Ctrl-Alt-Del key sequence and shutting down (has worked for a few), or just yank the power plug from the wall. According to reports, the update is installing just fine it's just not communicating back to the OS that the installation actually completed.
Some have reported this occurrence happening for Windows 8.1 but a common thread is definitely for those running Windows 7 x64. Incidentally, I experienced the exact same problem on two different machines, both running Windows 8.1.
There's currently no communication from Microsoft on the issue and no signs yet that the update will be pulled. The security issue the update attempts to fix is in Windows Journal and affects all versions of Windows. The installation problem is a minor one, not as bad as blue screens and broken applications and services delivered in previous months, but it's still frustrating.