You can delay Windows 10 updates – but not forever

Businesses seem pretty satisfied with Windows 10 overall. But there’s one feature that’s still confusing and confounding IT pros regularly: the update cycles. 

Microsoft’s plan for Windows 10 was to be seamless, regular updates. It wanted customers to have an automatically updated OS that got around some of the problems with delayed and ignored updates that previous versions had.

While that’s more often than not a good thing for consumers, businesses weren’t happy about it. All it would take is one update that didn’t play nice with enterprise apps or a faulty update to throw businesses into chaos.

Delaying updates … again

The initial solution, Current Branch for Business, allowed a four-month delay for companies who wanted a slower update rollout. But even that was too fast for some.

Now, in a excellent rundown of all the latest on the operating system, Computerworld’s Gregg Keizer updates the latest on the security rollouts.

Some highlights:

  • “Current Branch,” the default users will still have receive updates immediately after they’re available.
  • “Current Branch for Business,” or CBB, automatically delays those updates for a period of three months.
  • If, however, IT administrators choose to, they can set a deferral for anywhere from one to eight months for select users or user groups in CBB. So, for instance, if you delay updates one month, they’ll be installed four months after current branch gets them; for an eight-month delay, updates will be installed one year after they’re first available.

One year maximum

This buys IT time. But is it enough?

IT pros hate to be rushed on someone else’s schedule – especially when those deadlines could interfere with corporate data or applications.

While it may be tempting to push updates off as long as possible, this could also be an opportunity to get ahead on long-term projects. Consider having certain users be your guinea pigs on a quicker update schedule — for instance, those who use corporate apps, but not all the time or those who don’t have access to the most sensitive data.

It’s not ideal to be rushed in any way. But at least this way, you can run some test of your own to determine how updates will work with your systems.

  • TsarNikky

    Given time, third-party software developers will develop an application that will allow a user to control which update(s) to download/install, when to install them, and which update(s) to “hide.” Either Microsoft or third-party developers will come up with a solution. Microsoft’s present attitude of “Ooops, sorry,” is unacceptable.