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[Ars] Windows 10 Anniversary Update breaks most webcams

post #1 of 32
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Quote:
The Windows 10 Anniversary Update, aka version 1607, has been found to leave many webcams inoperable. The update prevents the use of webcams in applications such as Skype and Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), along with all manner of custom CCTV programs. Extremely popular hardware, such as Logitech's C920 and C930e cameras, in conjunction even with Microsoft's own Skype, will fail to properly broadcast video.

People first noticed the issue earlier this month. But it's only within the last couple of days that the exact cause became clear via a post by Brad Sams on thurott.com.

Microsoft has said that a fix is in development, but has not yet said when that fix will be distributed.

Quote:
However, this points to a broader problem. The Insider builds have had this frame server change for many months. If anyone noticed the change break their software, whatever response they created was muted at best. For my own part, I tend to use the Insider Previews only in virtual machines, which raise few of these hardware concerns. I didn't install the preview on my main PC—the PC that happens to have a USB 2 webcam, among many other peripherals—until a few days before the final release. Even then, I misattributed the problem.

Quote:
Microsoft's poor communication over what each Windows build changes and brings to the table also, I feel, has some responsibility. The webcam stack changes were not widely publicized. Microsoft's own site makes no mention of the new frame server service, for example. This means that there was little reason to believe that something was fundamentally different in the way that Windows is handling webcams, so when something breaks, it's much harder to diagnose what the cause of that problem is. I didn't know if it was the camera hardware, Logitech's camera drivers, or Windows itself, and I figured the first two were much more likely than the third. If Microsoft had clearly communicated that the webcam stack was changed, I would have been much less likely to ascribe the problems I saw to the camera itself. I would have been much more likely to ascribe them to the Anniversary Update. This would have meant in turn that I would have filed a bug.

Source.



Edit: Microsoft has publicly apologized for the blunder:


http://www.techspot.com/news/66044-windows-10-anniversary-update-has-stopped-millions-webcams.html

Quote:
In the support thread, users are blasting Microsoft for not advertising the change. A Microsoft camera engineer, Mike M, admitted that the company had done a “poor job” of letting people know about the changes.

"So yes, MJPEG and H.264 being decoded / filtered out is the result of a set of features we needed to implement, and this behavior was planned, designed, tested, and flighted out to our partners and Windows Insiders around the end of January of this year," wrote Mike M.

"We worked with partners to make sure their applications continued to function throughout this change, but we have done a poor job communicating this change out to you guys. We dropped the ball on that front, so I'd like to offer my apologies to you all," he added.

The fact that the number of days people have to roll-back the anniversary update was cut from 30 to just 10 has added to the problems, leaving people without working webcams unable to switch back to the earlier version of the OS.



Microsoft introduced an incomplete "Windows Camera Frame Server" feature in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update that breaks webcam functionality as it currently lacks support for MJPEG and H.264 compressed streams and they didn't communicate those changes, which is odd to say the least. If functionality that affects hardware in use is removed, some form of communication of that fact was to be expected.

This also shows the insufficiencies in relying more on Windows Insiders instead of more on internal dedicated testers, a reportedly good portion of which they laid off two years ago. Incomplete usage patterns - systems used primarily for a single purpose, for example, gaming; secondary rigs as Microsoft itself advises against (and well at that) using Insider builds on primary PCs and in production environments and finally, usage in virtual machines are among the problems with crowdsourcing OS testing.

But above all else, at the end of the day, it again highlights the major problem that is not allowing people, especially the Home Edition users, to select or even postpone which updates they want to install. For the time being (see article for more details) they are ironically left with power user style registry edits to disable this new incomplete service and restore functionality.
Edited by tpi2007 - 8/26/16 at 5:17pm
 
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post #2 of 32
I hate to be "that guy" and I'm not plugging linux here but how can people continue to support Microsoft when this is almost a weekly / monthly thing. They break more than they fix, they bait and switch features, they bald faced lie and get caught doing various things... How much longer will people put up with it? This type of merry go round would never fly in my house, or in my business if I worked for myself. I just don't get it. And then people still defend it. Why????
Edited by Tadaen Sylvermane - 8/24/16 at 6:43am
 
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post #3 of 32
Didn't break the Intel Realsense SR300 kit I bought for Windows Hello, works just as well as it did before rolleyes.gif .
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post #4 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tadaen Sylvermane View Post

I hate to be "that guy" and I'm not plugging linux here but how can people continue to support Microsoft when this is almost a weekly / monthly thing. They break more than they fix, they bait and switch features, they bald faced lie and get caught doing various things... How much longer will people put up with it? This type of merry go round would never fly in my house, or in my business if I worked for myself. I just don't get it. And then people still defend it. Why????

Because there's no alternative to M$py's latest regurgitated rubbish. A lot of developers do not make tools for Linux (Adobe is a famous one) so a lot of people are stuck with Windows. Gamers also have this problem as drivers aren't as mature and a lot of games do not exist for Linux.

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post #5 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tadaen Sylvermane View Post

I hate to be "that guy" and I'm not plugging linux here but how can people continue to support Microsoft when this is almost a weekly / monthly thing. They break more than they fix, they bait and switch features, they bald faced lie and get caught doing various things... How much longer will people put up with it? This type of merry go round would never fly in my house, or in my business if I worked for myself. I just don't get it. And then people still defend it. Why????

I want to change over to Linux so thats one of the reason I bought a laptop to play around with various linux distros. But as mentioned its because of the games, I did try Linux Mint i believe and steam but it did just not run aswell and you could feel a bit of stuttering, so im forced with windows.

But as I understand it vulkan might change this so I have my hopes up there, and more and more games are coming to linux.
post #6 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liranan View Post

Because there's no alternative to M$py's latest regurgitated rubbish. A lot of developers do not make tools for Linux (Adobe is a famous one) so a lot of people are stuck with Windows. Gamers also have this problem as drivers aren't as mature and a lot of games do not exist for Linux.

This is the reason I don't main Linux. Photoshop and lightroom can be made to "work" but not without issues. If Adobe would support Linux then it's be no problem for me
Edited by Echoa - 8/26/16 at 12:03am
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post #7 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaeTroX View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tadaen Sylvermane View Post

I hate to be "that guy" and I'm not plugging linux here but how can people continue to support Microsoft when this is almost a weekly / monthly thing. They break more than they fix, they bait and switch features, they bald faced lie and get caught doing various things... How much longer will people put up with it? This type of merry go round would never fly in my house, or in my business if I worked for myself. I just don't get it. And then people still defend it. Why????

I want to change over to Linux so thats one of the reason I bought a laptop to play around with various linux distros. But as mentioned its because of the games, I did try Linux Mint i believe and steam but it did just not run aswell and you could feel a bit of stuttering, so im forced with windows.

But as I understand it vulkan might change this so I have my hopes up there, and more and more games are coming to linux.

I tried several different Linux distro's on my laptop, none of them worked well. Drivers caused a lot of problems so I had to go back to Windows. Very annoying when you can't install video drivers and are forced to run the OS in software mode.

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post #8 of 32
I wonder if this affects security camera systems as well.
post #9 of 32
Freezing problems happen as well with this update IF you have a SSD as your booting solution and have other programs on a HDD.

They still did not fix it and tons of people are having the issue.
post #10 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liranan View Post

I tried several different Linux distro's on my laptop, none of them worked well. Drivers caused a lot of problems so I had to go back to Windows. Very annoying when you can't install video drivers and are forced to run the OS in software mode.

So far I have only tried one laptop, which is an older thinkpad T410s most distros run out of the box and I havent had to do that much when it comes to gpu drivers, but some distros like Ubuntu is a no go biggrin.gif it runs slow, and currently I have Debian 8 installed on it and it works fine so far.

Linux Mint I installed on main PC at home, with a GTX 970, it took me a bit to get the drivers intalled ( always used windows so installing drivers on linux took its time and a lot of google searches ) but I did get it to work so I could play games for instance, but what did it for me was the lack of skype or well an updated version ( old one looks so weird ) and sites that required flash could never work even if I installed flash and followed guides, but some distros it worked out of the box no idea what they did different

And then I had a lot of problems connecting to my NAS

Some distros worked with websites that used flash but I could not figure out how to connect to my nas ( looked at guides )
Some distros worked with the NAS but I could never get flash to work

So I know your pain biggrin.gif

And it seems now that every update microsoft release just breaks something, and skype for instance just seem to get worse every time, after the anniversary I have noticed that skype just crash sometimes, but you dont see that it crash because it still have the program running etc. And during video calls and you want to "share" your desktop instead of actually showing my desktop it just keeps showing my webcam, and when you then remove the sharing of desktop you cant get your webcam back, and you need to end the call
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