Troubleshooting tips if Microsoft Teams won’t apply background effects

When you organize a meeting within Microsoft Teams you are provided the ability to transmit video input via your webcam. While this provides a great opportunity to visually demonstrate what you’re talking about, or perhaps present something to attendants, it also allows you to easily risk revealing sensitive information in your background. As such, many people wish to set a custom background or use background effects to blur their surroundings.

CauseSolution
Incompatible hardwareUpgrade your hardware or use a newer device
Erroneous filesReplace the files with repaired versions
Outdated clientClear your Teams cache and update your client

In this post, we’re going to be providing some fixes to attempt if you’re having trouble accessing or using Microsoft Teams’ background effects. Firstly, we’ll cover hardware issues, and finish up with replacing identified erroneous files.

Contents:

  1. What requriements is my hardware missing
  2. Resolving erronous JSON files
  3. Updating your Microsoft Teams application
  4. Clearing your Microsoft Teams cache
  5. End note

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What requirements is my hardware missing to apply background effects

A brief introduction to system requirements

System requirements serve as criteria your device must fit to utilize a program efficiently, and as intended. While it is not problematic to have greater system capabilities than required; having less can cause performance issues, feature failures, or even make the program in question unusable. As such, it’s generally advised to always refer to an application’s minimum system requirements before installing and/or running it. In some cases, the extent to which a program is unusable without its requirements can be significantly improved via third-party applications. Despite that, this is not advised, as the methods involved often sacrifice the program’s quality and or even stability for the sake of performance. Additionally, the use of said applications may violate the program’s terms of service.

What are Microsoft Teams’ minimum system requirements

If you’re uncertain your device fits the required hardware for Microsoft Teams, you can refer to the system requirements criteria provided by Microsoft. Albeit, if your only issue is faulty background effects — you’re likely to be using an outdated processor. Unlike newer processors, many older processors lack the functionality to use AVX2 — a required feature for the background effects within Microsoft Teams.

Resolving erronous JSON files to apply background effects on Teams

Please note, before proceeding with the guide, you’ll need to download the repaired files provided here.

Step 1 – Start extracting the provided files

To begin extracting your files, select the zip and right-click it. Doing so will produce the context menu for the ZIP file. Using it, select Extract All…

Step 2 – Select an destination for the extracted files

Having begun extraction, you’ll be met with a destination window. You’ll need to enter the directory you’d like the extracted files to be sent to. In our case, we’ve set our files to extract in the same folder as their ZIP. We recommend extracting your files in a place you can get to easily.

Step 3 – Select and cut the extracted JSON files

Click and drag to select each file, followed by a right-click to enter the context menu. Finish by selecting Cut.

Step 4 – Navigate to Teams folder in AppData

Enter %AppData%\Microsoft\Teams into the directory search bar and press enter. In the resulting folder, paste the provided JSON files.

Step 5 – Replace the outdated files

Select Replace the files in the destination to proceed. Failure to do so will prevent the problematic files from being replaced.

Updating Microsoft Teams to apply background effects

A brief guide

  • Access context menu () by your account icon in the top right
  • Select check for update
    • If there is an update, restart Microsoft Teams

Clearing your Microsoft Teams cache

In some cases, an update may not be downloaded because the cache, in which it would be stored, is full. Due to this, you should consider clearing your cache every so often to keep this from happening. After all, you can’t get new features if you can’t access the update they’re featured in. If you would like a more comprehensive guide, please consult our other blog post, linked here.

A brief guide

  • Go to your desktop
  • Right click your desktop
  • Select New>Text file
  • Double click the file to open it
  • Copy and paste the script provided below
  • Save the file, making sure it ends with .bat and not .txt
  • Close notepad
  • Return to your desktop
  • Run the file by double clicking it
@echo off
color 0e
cls
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\application cache\cache.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\blob_storage.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\databases.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\GPUcache.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\IndexedDB.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\Local Storage.
del /s %appdata%\Microsoft\teams\tmp.
echo Cache Cleared Successfully
pause

End note

Recap

Background effects in Microsoft Teams are often used to conceal sensitive information your background may give away. Background effects can appear unusable when a user lacks the required hardware to utilize background effects, or similarily, not appear when a user is using an outdated Microsoft Teams client. In some cases, however, the issue may be the result of damaged or otherwise erroneous JSON files utilized by the Microsoft Teams application.

Farwell

As usual, this section is dedicated to thanking readers for their support. We’d be pleased to know you found this post useful and/or informative. If you have any more Office 365 related queries, please consult our related articles (listed below). However, if you have other queries, consider looking at the rest of the site. We’re frequently posting new stuff each week and may just have the guide or troubleshooting tips you need. Regardless, we wish you a good day/night. Farewell readers. 

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Jack Mitchell

Jack Mitchell has been the Operations manager at telecoms and MSP Optionbox for more than 4 years. He has played a crucial role in the company, from marketing to helpdesk, and ensures that the IT requirements of over 300 clients are continuously met. With his innate passion for technology and troubleshooting and a particular interest in Apple products, Jack now delivers the most comprehensive tech guides to make your life easier. You can connect with Jack on LinkedIn.

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