What to Do When Acrylic Effect Appears to Be Bugged in Windows 10/11

Quick Fix

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Microsoft’s Fluent Design System is a modern design approach for Windows 10/11, showcasing the company’s fresh vision and reimagined design. Acrylic, one of the common elements of Fluent Design, can be found throughout the operating system and various apps.

Here is a deeper look into the Acrylic effect and what you can possibly do if the Acrylic effect in Action Center is bugged, for instance.

What Is Acrylic Effect?

Acrylic is densely translucent. It allows the background as well as windows behind the current focus blur through. It can be spotted in different locations, such as the Action Center, Start menu, taskbar, as well as My People.

Acrylic elements are also found in apps like Calculator, Photos, and Maps. The Calculator app might as well be the best-looking Windows 10/11 app to have Acrylic now, while Maps has the style applied to the top of its windows, specifically where the title bar and navigation menus can be found.

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Windows 10/11 users can turn on or off transparency for the Action Center, Start, taskbar, and many other places. When they turn on transparency, they achieve a blurred effect by default.

Beginning Windows 10/11 April 2018 update version 1803, the taskbar shows off Acrylic as a new blur effect. What this means is turning on clear transparency no longer displays a clear glass such as taskbar. Instead, there will be a somewhat blurred transparent taskbar. You can easily turn on or off having an Acrylic taskbar transparency.

Cumulative Update KB4482887 Caused Acrylic Effect Bug

Now, several Windows users have documented a bug that involves the Acrylic effect. A commonly reported issue is when the Acrylic effect appears all of a sudden only after Action Center is completely opened. In the opening animation, it maintains a normal transparency. The issue has begun after the installation of Cumulative Update KB4482887.

Microsoft has not rolled out an official fix for this issue. This means that the solutions below are mere workarounds you can try, based on specific assumptions we make around the problem and its potential cause.

To be on the safe side, make basic diagnostic checks of your computer. These include cleaning out junk files and other unwanted elements that have accumulated over time, interfering in normal system processes and systems. Use a reliable PC repair tool for this purpose.

Double-check, too, if you have disabled the Acrylic effect. Follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings > Personalization > Colors.
  2. Enable the Transparency effects checkbox.
  3. Retry the issue and see if it is gone.

The particular example above of the Acrylic effect having issues after a cumulative update suggests a graphics driver issue. If you are interested to flesh out this potential cause, here are the steps to follow.

Restart Your Graphics Driver

First, try to restart your graphics driver. Do this by pressing Windows + Ctrl + Shift + B keys. If this did not work, here are further instructions:

  1. Press Windows + X keys.
  2. Click Device Manager.
  3. Next, expand Display adapters. Right-click your current display adapter.
  4. Click Properties and then the Driver tab.
  5. Afterwards, click Rollback driver, if you find this option. If not, right-click the current display adapter. Hit Uninstall, and check the box saying Delete the driver software for this device.
  6. Exit Device Manager.
  7. Finally, reboot your machine.

Update Your Drivers

To do this, navigate to Start > Settings > Update & security. Afterwards, go to Check for updates and install any available updates there.

It might also come in handy to update the display driver. Do this straight from the computer maker’s website. Download the latest drivers from the manufacturer’s website if you have an nVidia, AMD ATI video card, or Intel HD graphics installed in your computer.

Know the kind of graphics installed by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows + X keys.
  2. Click Device Manager.
  3. Expand Display adapters.
  4. Determine the graphics driver and then proceed to the vendor’s site for the right driver.

Perform a Windows Restore

If the Acrylic bug persists then it might be worth executing a system restore. While this sounds complicated, the process simply restores your system from a restore point, or before the problem began. Here are the steps to do this:

  1. Click Start in the lower section of your section.
  2. Input restore and click Create a restore point from the results. Wait for System Properties to surface.
  3. Hit System Restore from the wizard that pops up.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to select a system restore point.
  5. Wait for the process to complete. Afterwards, check if the problem has been resolved.

Final Notes

The Acrylic effect is part of Microsoft’s Fluent Design System, an ongoing design language journey initiated by the tech giant. It is not free of bugs and glitches, though, as shown by the Acrylic effect bug detected in Action Center. Try one of the different fixes we enumerated above.

What’s your own experience with Acrylic? Share your thoughts with us below!

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