Microsoft Announces Upcoming Windows 10 Optional Updates Will Be Paused

Companies around the globe are finding themselves altering their way of business due to COVID-19/coronavirus. That burden even falls on massive multinational companies like Microsoft, which has been making adjustments to its cloud business to handle increased demand.

Today, Microsoft has announced changes to Window 10 that will affect the way that cumulative updates are delivered to customers. Starting in May, Microsoft says that it will pause optional updates for Windows 10. Microsoft refers to these optional updates internally as C and D updates (C and D reference the third and fourth week of the month, whereas A and B are obviously the first and second week). 

This delivery “pause” refers to all optional, non-security releases across all Windows client and server products that are still officially supported by Microsoft. In short, the company says that it is “prioritizing our focus on security updates” in an effort to “ensure business continuity and to keep our customers protected and productive.”

We should note that this has absolutely no effect on mandatory cumulative updates and security patches, as are typically handed down during Patch Tuesday

Until May, it’s business as usual for all Windows updates. For example, the company just released the optional KB4541335 cumulative update for Windows 10 v1903 and v1909. There’s a laundry list of items addressed in this update, but here are the highlights:

  • Updates an issue that causes an error when printing to a document share.
  • Updates a performance issue in applications that occurs when content that is protected by digital rights management (DRM) plays or is paused in the background.
  • Updates an issue that prevents the mute button from working on certain devices with the Microsoft Your Phone app.
  • Updates an issue that prevents applications from closing.
  • Updates an issue that causes calendar dates to appear on the wrong day of the week in the clock and date region of the notification area when you select the Samoa time zone.
  • Updates an issue that causes applications to close unexpectedly when a user enters East Asian characters after changing the keyboard layout.

You can expect to see these updates continue to be available through April, with the new optional update policy going into effect the following month. At this time, Microsoft has not indicated how long this pause will last.