FIX: Screen became pixelated after Windows update

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
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Some users have reported that their screens are pixelated after applying certain Windows updates.

They said that their icons were huge and text was blurry and pixelated. Fortunately, this is not a big issue, and you can solve it quickly, with just a few steps.

But first, here are some more examples of this issue:

  • Windows 10 pixelated video – This problem usually occurs after installing Windows 10 updates.
  • Computer screen pixelated and freezes – In some cases, it can also happen that your screen freezes, besides being pixelated.
  • Pixelated screen Windows 7 – Also, this problem is common in Windows 7, as well.
  • My laptop screen is pixelated – Laptops are more prone to screen pixelation than regular PCs.
  • Computer screen pixelated virus – Pixelated screen can easily be caused by a virus or malware.

What to do if the screen becomes pixelated after Windows Update

Table of contents:

  1. Change Screen Resolution
  2. Check if Your Drivers Are Compatible
  3. Set DPI Size
  4. Update monitor drivers
  5. Change monitor refresh rate
  6. Update Windows

Solution 1 – Change Screen Resolution

Wrong screen resolution is an issue in the most cases. Some updates may disrupt your screen resolution, and changing it back to normal, should fix things up. If you don’t know how to change the screen resolution, here’s how to do that.

  1. Right click on Desktop and choose Personalization
  2. In the down left corner, click on Display
  3. Click on Adjust Resolutionchange display resolution
  4. Choose your resolution and click OK

Windows 10 won’t let you adjust screen resolution? Don’t panic! Fix this issue like an expert!

Solution 2 – Check if Your Drivers Are Compatible

If resolution changing doesn’t help, first thing you want to do next is to check if your video drivers are compatible with Windows 8.1, if they’re not, uninstall them and install the compatible ones.

Here’s how to do that:

  1. Press Windows key + R and type devmgmt.msc in the run prompt.
  2. Expand the Display adapters section, right-click your adapter and then uninstall itreinstall gpu driver
  3. Restart the computer, let Windows 8 detect the driver and install by itself and check if it fixes the issue.

If updating your drivers don’t help, then you probably have some issues with your DPI(dots per inch) settings. The next solution will show you how to solve all DPI issues.

We’ve written extensively on high DPI issues. Check out this guide for more information.

Solution 3 – Set DPI Size

Setting the DPI size to a smaller percentage will decrease all items size on the display, which will definitely help you if your screen is pixelated.
The easiest way to change DPI is through Display Settings:

  1. Go to Settings > System > Display
  2. Now, go to custom scaling, and you’ll see a screen like this:change custom scaling settings

Now, choose one of these three options and save the changes:

  • Smaller – 100% = 96 DPI (Pixels/Dots Per Inch)
  • Medium – 125% = 120 DPI (Pixels/Dots Per Inch)
  • Larger – 150% = 144 DPI (Pixels/Dots Per Inch)

Solution 4 – Update monitor drivers

If your GPU drivers are up to date, we’re also going to make sure your monitor drivers are good. Although monitor drivers cause issues less often, it’s still possible.

Especially if you recently got a new monitor, or installed a new version of Windows 10.

Here’s how to check if your monitor drivers are up to date:

  1. Go to Search, type devicemngr, and open Device Manager.
  2. Expand Monitors.
  3. Right-click your monitor, and go to Update driver.update monitor driver
  4. Let your computer find new drivers for your monitor.
  5. If there are any new drivers available, let the wizard install them.
  6. Restart your computer.

Check out this handy guide to update your drivers like a pro!

Keep in mind that updating your drivers is an advanced procedure. If you’re not careful you can cause permanent damage to your system by downloading the wrong driver version, therefore use extra caution.

We strongly recommend TweakBit’s Driver Updater (approved by Microsoft and Norton) to automatically download all the outdated drivers on your PC.

Disclaimer: some features of this tool are not free.

Solution 5 – Change monitor refresh rate

If the monitor refresh rate is set to a wrong one, there’s a chance your screen will become pixelated. Here’s how to change that:

  1. Right-click the Desktop and go to Display Settings.
  2. Go to Advanced display settings
  3. Under Related settings, go to Display adapter properties
  4. Go to the Monitor tab and select another refresh rate from Screen refresh rate:change monitor's frequency rate
  5. Click OK

Solution 6 – Update Windows

I don’t have to tell you to keep your Windows 10 computer up to date. Updating your computer brings many benefits, and possibly resolves some issues (although some problems may be caused by updates, but that’s a story for another time).

So, check for updates, and maybe the solution for your problem will just come to you.

To update your computer, simply go to the Settings app > Updates & Security, and check for updates.

Which is the latest version of Windows 10? Find out from our comprehensive article about this OS!

That’s about it, we hope at least one of these solutions helped you resolve your problem with pixelated dispaly on your Windows 10 computer.

If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions, just let us know in the comments below.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in December 2014 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.


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