Microsoft Resumes Optional Windows 10 Updates in July – Will Mark Them as “Preview”

Jun 19, 2020
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Microsoft has started to reverse some actions that it had to take as COVID-19 pushed companies to rethink strategies during the global lockdowns. The Windows maker has said in an update that it would soon resume non-security updates for Windows 10.

"In March, we announced that we would pause optional non-security update releases (also referred to as "C" and "D" releases) for all supported versions of Windows client and Windows Server to give organizations time to focus on business continuity in the face of the global pandemic," Microsoft wrote.

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"Based on feedback and the ongoing stabilization of business continuity, we will resume optional releases in July of 2020 for Windows 10 and Windows Server, version 1809 and later, to once again provide you with the ability to test planned non-security fixes targeted for the next month’s Update Tuesday (or "B") release."

These C and D releases were the second batch of cumulative updates that were being released almost every month. In the past two months, only one monthly security patch was delivered doing away with non-security updates.

Non-security Windows 10 updates resume in July 2020 with some changes

Microsoft is also taking this opportunity to make some changes to the Windows 10 update process. The company said that it is trying to simplify the process to "help you continue to stay current with Windows 10 and Windows Server."

These changes include:

  1. Validated, production-quality optional releases will be now called "Preview" releases.
  2. To simplify update management for IT, these "Preview" releases will be delivered in the "C" week only.
  3. If you use Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) to manage updates, you will no longer see "Preview" (or "C") releases for Windows 10 or Windows Server in the WSUS channel.
  4. Those in the Windows Insider Program or Windows Insider Program for Business, in-development versions of these non-security updates will be released to the Release Preview Channel in the "B" week.

For the first point, it makes sense to term these releases as "preview," since these non-security updates were delivered as optional updates and then would become part of the next month's non-optional Patch Tuesday updates. These updates (only for v1809 and later) would now clearly alert the user: "beware, we are testing on your device."

Prior to the end users, Windows 10 optional updates will also arrive for Insiders in the Release Preview Channel a week in advance.

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