New cumulative updates for Win10 1803 and 1709 — and a taste of what might be right in 1809

Yesterday saw the usual Fourth Tuesday barrage of Win10 cumulative updates, with all currently supported versions getting a jab, except Win10 version 1809. With 1809 we got a look at expected fixes, while the testing pot still simmers. Bravo.

hand at keyboard with Windows logo

We may be witnessing a Patch Festivus Miracle in the making. The powers-that-be in Redmond have slowed down the relentless pace of Win10 updates and, at least in the case of the latest version of the last version of Windows, we may actually see a responsibly vetted patch.

Yesterday, the “D Week” Tuesday in November, saw a mass of Win10 patches normally distributed during “C Week” — which fell over Thanksgiving in the U.S. Among the usual assortment of Win7, 8.1, .Net and other bug fixes, we saw two mainstream Win10 patches:

  • Win10 version 1803  KB 4467682 brings the build up to 17134.441. Lots and lots of little bug fixes, plus a fix for the eye-popping filename association bug first publicized by Chris Hoffman at How-To Geek earlier this month. 1803 still shows two known issues: The SqlConnection exception in .Net, and the Seek Bar is broken in Windows Media Player. I think of the latter bug as just deserts for anybody who hasn’t switched from Windows Media Player to VLC or Plex.
  • Win10 version 1709 — KB 4467681 brings the build up to 16299.820. Another big list of bugs, same acknowledged problems.

There are also fixes for versions of Win10 that few of you are likely to be running:

  • Win10 version 1703 — KB 4467699 brings Enterprise and Education users up to build 15063.1478.
  • Win10 version 1607 and Server 2016 — KB 4467684 brings Server and LTSC users up to build 14393.2639.

All in all, it’s a pretty typical “C or D Week” spread. These are Win10 cumulative updates, with no security patches, that have never been tested outside of Redmond. They’re available in Windows Update, but will not be installed unless you specifically install them, either by manual download, or by clicking on them in Windows Update. As best I can tell, the old Seeker Marquess of Queensbury rules no longer apply — apparently you can’t get updated by simply clicking Check for Updates.

For Win10 1809, however, it’s anything but the same-old same-old. Continuing a truly noteworthy trend, Microsoft held off distributing a non-security cumulative update for Win10 1809, apparently waiting for its trip through the Windows Insider Release Preview Ring to come to fruition. This month’s second cumulative update for Win10 1809 becomes the first in more than three years to go through a real outside-of-Microsoft testing round before it hits Windows Update.

That’s exactly why the Windows Insider Release Preview Ring exists.

For the first time we’re going to get a non-security cumulative update that’s been tested outside of Microsoft. Remains to be seen how bug-free it’ll be, but the list of anticipated changes is extensive and, yes, the filename extension bug fix and mapped drive bug fix are in the mix.

@abbodi86 notes that the new 1809 bits are out, but only in Windows Update Server:

1809 refreshed installation media was published in WSUS today, but in client Windows Update, 1809 is still in Release Preview Ring only.

Just imagine what would happen if Microsoft extended this same cautious pace to version upgrades. We might actually see new versions of Win10 appear in semi-solidified form, with features that are worth the disruption of a complete Windows reinstall.

Could happen.

Dream on.

Copyright © 2018 IDG Communications, Inc.

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