In what can be considered a landmark decision that will bring about a huge impact on the way future Windows updates are rolled out, Microsoft revealed all Windows 10 Insider Preview builds for PCs would henceforth be channelized via the Unified Update Platform mode of delivery. And till that happens, the rollout process of Windows 10 preview builds for PCs on the Fast and Slow ring has been put on hold.
For the uninitiated, the Unified Update Platform aims to improve the way Windows 10 updates are rolled out by making the entire update process both efficient and fast. For instance, Windows 10 devices will no longer require downloading the complete update once the UUP is ready. Instead, thanks to the usage of differential download technology, it is only the portions relevant to the particular device that they would be required to download and install.
Microsoft stated this would reduce the size of upcoming updates by about 35 percent on average, though this again can vary widely on a device-to-device basis. However, the changes would be evident only after the Windows 10 Creators Update, due in Spring 2017. The Windows maker had earlier stated the Creators Update will be made available for free and will apply to all the 400 million+ devices running Windows 10.
The above will also be relevant as Microsoft aims to make Windows 10 to power a whole host of devices. Those range from the regular PCs and tablets to phones, HoloLens and IoT.
Under the hood, the Check for Updates methodology is also being revamped so that the process will now be taking place in the clouds instead of the device itself. The immediate benefit with such a move is that there will be less processing at the devices level, something that will make the Windows 10 as a perform better while the checks too can be done faster.
UUP will also ensure Mobile devices are able to move on to the latest build easily in a manner reminiscent of PCs. As things stand right now, phones often are required to download a few requisites before they can download the latest build. All of it will be a thing of the past once UUP becomes a reality.
Meanwhile, Microsoft also stated the move to pause all PC builds for the Fast and Slow rings would have zero impact on Mobile devices. Microsoft had started UUP-flying the insider builds for Mobile devices in November itself via Build 14959 for Mobile.
For PC builds on the Fast and Slow ring, Microsoft said they would right now be internally testing the builds via UUP before making them available to Windows Insiders. No time frame has been released as to how long the internal testing would last though it is going to last a few days at least. Interestingly, the relatively safer Release Preview ring continues to receive all the latest builds without any disruption.