Microsoft’s Sinofsky Details More Frequent Update Engineering System For Windows 8

Microsoft’s Steven Sinofsky announced that there’s a new update available for Windows 8, and it offers some reliability and performance updates including better efficiency for improved battery life, performance improvements to applications and the Start screen, better audio and video playback, and improved application and driver compatibility.

In the blog post announcing the updates, Sinofsky also took the time to discuss Microsoft’s better engineering system and update speed. He noted that in the past, there was an 8-12 week cycle between when the code was released to OEMs and when end users would see the updates on computers on store shelves.

Windows 8

“This time has historically been used to match newly developed PCs, which can include a variety of new or enhanced components, drivers, and companion software, with the final code for Windows” said Sinofsky. “Because these hardware and software components are brand new, it could be the case that they uncover the need for changes and improvements to Windows in the areas of fundamentals.”

However, although Microsoft would work up a number of changes in conjunction with OEMs along the way, they didn’t have the testing and certification in place to apply those changes more broadly. As a result, consumers wouldn’t see the improvements until a service pack was released.

Now, however, the company has developed a way to get those updates out the door faster. “By developing better test automation and test coverage tools we are happy to say that Windows 8 will be totally up to date for all customers starting at General Availability”, said Sinofsky.

This is good news; the fewer service packs users have to deal with (and wait for), the better.