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Strange Display Behavior Gets Workarounds

Every now and then, Windows 10 gets a little wonky. Ever since the 6/12 Cumulative Update (KB4284835) I’ve been dealing with a strange display behavior. It only happens on my right-hand display. I’ve not been able to figure what’s causing it. For a while, a fix eluded my grasp. Along the way, though, this strange display behavior gets workarounds that have kept me going. Let me explain…

Reset the resolution, then keep those changes, maintaining the original aspect ratio. Repeat, but revert the resolution back to its original values.
[Click image for full-sized view.]

How Exactly Strange Display Behavior Gets Workarounds

If I maximize a window on my right-hand display (I have a pair of Dell 2717D 2560×1440 monitors), the top portion of the window is not rendered. Because that’s where the window controls reside that means I can’t grapple with them directly. If I click in the region where they’re supposed to be, the cursor behaves just as it would if no window was present in that space. Thus, not only can I not see the controls, the screen mapping doesn’t detect them either. Initially this led to my first workaround. Because I couldn’t access the window directly, I right-clicked on the corresponding icon in the Taskbar. This let me choose “Close window” from among the various options presented. Crude, but effective in dispelling the window.

A little research showed me that by clicking the Alt+Space keys, I could use the Restore option to switch back from full-screen mode to the original size of the window before it had been maximized. Because this has the useful property of restoring the window controls, with URL box, menus, and so forth for my web browsers (my most frequently-used applications by far) or the Ribbon (for MS Office components), this pretty much puts me entirely back to rights. And thus, this quickly became my workaround of choice.

Display Property Ju-Jitsu: Fix or Just Another Workaround?

I was chatting with Kari the Finn today (he’s my partner in Win10.Guru, and a general sounding board for all things Windows) and he came up with another solution. I can’t tell yet if it’s just another workaround or a real fix. That’s because I can no longer get my apps to misbehave by dropping the top portion of a maximized window. The simple version of his fix is best understood in recipe form:

1. Right-click on the desktop background
2. Select Display Settings from the resulting pop-up menu
3. Pick another resolution for the wonky display
4. Click keep changes
5. Repeat steps 2-4, returning the display to its original resolution

The real “trick” however, is to pick an alternate resolution that maintains the same aspect ratio as the original resolution. Mine was 2560×1440 (aspect ratio of 1.78, or 16:9), so I chose 1920×1080 (same aspect ratio 16:9). A quick save, then a quick restore, with “Keep changes” at each step removed all symptoms of this problem.

If it comes back again (hasn’t so far) it’s just another workaround. So far, though, it works and acts like a fix. Very interesting!

Virtual Desktop