Windows 10: Updates

Why are UWRF workstations updating so often?

With the release of Windows 10, Microsoft has drastically changed the methodology of deploying and upgrading Windows. Any particular release of Windows 10 (commonly known as a feature update) is supported and updated by Microsoft for a limited time after release. After this time period expires, that build of Windows will no longer receive security updates and patches, making the system more vulnerable to attack.

As a particular Windows 10 version nears end of life, DoTS deploys "Feature Updates" to campus workstations to remain supported. These updates are anticipated to occur twice per year (spring and fall) and can take a bit longer to install than security updates. These updates appear in Software Center alongside normal monthly updates.

What is the advantage?

Traditionally, Microsoft has released a major operating system version (XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10) every four to five years. These major version changes presented a challenge to enterprise users as there was often a lengthy upgrade process and people needed to get used to new interface elements almost immediately. With Windows 10, we are deploying smaller, but more frequent, "servicing" updates that change smaller parts of the operating system at a time. This ultimately results in easier adaptation to the new operating system version as changes can be applied incrementally over time rather than a wholesale change of the operating system every few years.

These servicing updates enables UWRF to remain compliant with the latest security patches as well as introduce new operating system features to campus users at a much faster pace than previously possible.

Determine what version of Windows 10 is installed

You can see what version of Windows 10 is installed on your computer by following these steps:

  1. Open the Start Menu and select the Settings gear icon (outlined in red below):

  1. Select the System tile in the Settings app.
  2. Select About in the left-hand column.
  3. Scroll down to Windows specifications

  1. The version number is listed as Version

Version Number

Common Name OS Build Base Number Life Cycle End
1803 April 2018 Update (RS4) May, 2021*
1809 October 2018 Update (RS5) May, 2021*
1903 May 2019 Update (19H1) December, 2020*
1909 November 2019 Update (19H2) May, 2022*
2004 May 2020 Update (20H1) December, 2021*
20H2 Fall 2020 Update (20H2) May, 2023*

*These dates are from Microsoft's official life cycle fact sheet. They may be subject to change and workstations should be upgraded prior to the life cycle end for a particular build of Windows 10.


Article ID: 43629
Wed 12/6/17 1:19 PM
Fri 2/26/21 4:09 PM