Windows 10 Spring Update - Embrace Or Delay?

Category: Windows-10

The year’s first of two major feature updates to Windows 10 will occur in April (the second will come in November). Microsoft allows some customers to delay major updates for up to a year. Are you among those chosen ones? Should you postpone major updates or let them happen on schedule? Read on to learn the answers to these and other burning questions about Windows 10 Spring and Fall updates...

Should You Postpone Windows 10 Updates?

First, if you activated Windows 10 less than 30 days before any major update is due to happen, you get a pass; the update will not come to such “young” Windows installations. Presumably, that’s because infant Windows 10 installations are born current.

Second, if you have not been updated to the last major update, then the next one will not be delivered to you, and you will not be able to install it manually. The 2017 Fall Creators Update is Version 1709 (Each Version number consists of the year [‘17] and month [09 - September] of the update’s scheduled release). It is important to have Version 1709, else Version 1803 will not install.

(Yes, it looks like this 2018 Spring Creators Update slipped its schedule by one month; it should have started rolling out in March. Recall that Version 1709, scheduled for September, 2017, became known as the November Fall Creators Update.)

You can check to see if Version 1709 is installed by typing “winver” in the “Search Windows” box and pressing Enter. You should see “Version 1709” on the second line of small type, under “Microsoft Windows.”

Windows winver windows version

If you need to install Version 1709, use the Media Creation Tool to do an automated re-install of Windows 10; it’s the easiest and most foolproof method. You can find instructions on Microsoft's Download Windows 10 page.

If you have the Home Edition of Windows 10, you cannot postpone major updates. Only users of Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education Editions are allowed to delay major updates, presumably because their IT departments carry more weight with Microsoft than your family does.

Should you defer major updates if your Edition of Windows 10 permits it? It depends on how well Version 1709 is serving you right now (or soon after you finally get it installed). I have few complaints or unfulfilled wishes; so I will defer the Version 1803 update a few months to give Microsoft time to iron out the inevitable wrinkles.

What's Coming in the Windows 10 Spring Creators Update?

How-To Geek has an exhaustive (and exhausting) review of all new features coming in Version 1803. “Easy Wireless File Sharing” piques my interest. A new app called “Diagnostic Data Viewer” shows exactly what data Win 10 is transmitting back to Microsoft; it’s “too much information” for all but the geekiest readers. “Quick Pairing for Bluetooth Devices” should have been here long ago.

“Progressive Web Apps” will run in their own windows, have their own taskbar shortcuts, and generally behave as desktop apps should; unfortunately, they work only with the Edge browser. But PWA is a new standard for apps that Google, Mozilla, Microsoft, and even Apple are supporting, so it’s something you and I had better get used to. Just not at the same time as everyone else, please!

Better user control over the permissions granted to apps is a welcome security feature. So is the improved “don’t let apps use my webcam” option.

The HomeGroup concept is gone with Version 1803. Sharing files, printers, and other resources with a group of known or unknown users is better done with cloud storage and other modern solutions.

The list of new features gets a little tedious after the above. If you can live without paired Bluetooth devices for a few months, you might avoid the pain of a new version’s bugs.

How to Defer Windows 10 Updates

So let’s see exactly how to defer the Spring and Fall updates, The following instructions assume you have Version 1709 installed.

Go to Settings > Update & security > Advanced options. You will see three options.

Option 1 lets you defer updates until Microsoft declares them “business ready.” That’s usually about four months after an update’s initial release. To enable this deferment, simply change “Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted)” to “Semi-Annual Channel.”

Option 2 works only on Enterprise, Education, and Pro Editions of Windows 10. It lets you add additional time to the update delay set by Option 1. You can add as many as 365 days, in which case you won’t see any major updates until mid-year, 2019.

Option 3 has nothing to do with Spring or Fall feature updates. Instead, it lets you defer security updates for up to 30 days after their release date. I would pick about one week, giving Microsoft time to fix any bugs while limiting the time my system remains vulnerable.

If you plan to ride out the (quite possibly imaginary) storm of the update, the first two weeks of April should be a time of heightened backup discipline. Create a new System Restore Point at least once a week until you get Version 1803. Make a system image file on an external drive, or store it in the cloud. (Did you make a backup on World Backup Day?)

Remember, 99% of the things we worry about never happen. Just be prepared in case they do. Your thoughts on this topic are welcome. Post your comment or question below...

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Most recent comments on "Windows 10 Spring Update - Embrace Or Delay?"

(See all 25 comments for this article.)

Posted by:

Lee Bunyard
03 Apr 2018

Same situation as BillF, Under Advanced Options, I don't see three options, just options for downloading other Microsoft products and automatically download even over metered connection but none of the three options you mention for deferring installation. I've checked winver and it shows I have download 1709 installed. ?????????

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

Dan, if it is so painful, turn updates off completely. I know, there is no official options for that, but it's a piece of cake for a professional, like you - a couple of basic commands. Essentially it's a hack, but through legitimate Windows commands from context menu. The version of Windows I'm writing now from is 1607 and I didn't have any problems since.

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

I wonder, just how many people really read what Bob wrote and told us?

I see several comments by some of his readers, that they are unable to "delay" the updates. Per chance did anyone really read that if you have Windows 10 Home. . .You will not be able to "delay" any updates.

This option is for the Pro, Enterprise and Educational versions, only. Note:

"If you have the Home Edition of Windows 10, you cannot postpone major updates. Only users of /b/Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education Editions/-b/are allowed to delay major updates, presumably because their IT departments carry more weight with Microsoft than your family does."

The article also explains why these versions are allowed to "delay." These 3 versions usually uses IT departments and there has always been latitude for the IT Departments, to be able to update all of the computers within the score of their department.

Please check your version of Windows, by going to Settings, click on this, then select System, then select About. This will tell you what version of Windows 10 you have. I have Windows 10 Pro, since I upgraded from Windows 7 Pro.

Just a small note, if you have a fairly new computer, the chances are it is a Windows 10 Home version. Most retail computers are sold with Windows 10 Home. Now, the companies like Dell, HP and the like, have a Business side to their computer company. These Business computers are usually sold with Windows 10 Pro.

Bob takes his time to write to us and tell us how to do things. It really does behooves us to read what he writes.

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

Advanced Options worked for me as Bob describes. However it does not use the terms "Option 1, 2, 3".
"Option 1" starts with "Choose the branch readiness...". It has a pull-down box with the options of Semi-Annual Channel or Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted)
"Option 2" starts with "A feature update..." It has a pull-down box that lets you select a number of days between 0 and 365.
"Option 3" starts with "A quality update..." It has a pull-down box that lets you select a number of days between 0 and 30.

Posted by:

Dave in Indy
03 Apr 2018

Okay, NB, make us all look like fools, lol.

Posted by:

Dave in Indy
03 Apr 2018

Sorry - it was MmeMoxie that said that we can't read. ;)

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

Please, forgive me for sounding harsh, that was not my intent.

I see people not reading articles or comments thoroughly and then either complain about what they can not do or wanting more information, when it is usually all there for you.

I know that many of Bob's readers are Newbies or computer illiterate. I was at one time myself, but I read with Bob had to tell us and learned. I attribute my good knowledge of computers from Bob's Newsletters throughout the many years I have read them. Bob is the Geek's Geek, in my book.

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

Since Version 1709 won't install on my PC, I can't get too excited about later versions either.

Posted by:

03 Apr 2018

"Sharing files, printers, and other resources with a group of known or unknown users is better done with cloud storage and other modern solutions."

No, no, and no. Homegroup was all about sharing resources in a *Local* area network - not over the Internet and certainly nothing to do with cloud storage. It was an easier way to share things introduced with Windows 7 for both Home and Pro versions. And now it's gone.

I guess we have to go back to 'Workgroups' introduced in Windows XP. Home networking is hard, Microsoft just made it harder.

Posted by:

Ralph C
03 Apr 2018

My laptop is running Win 10 V 1600 or something. Went to MS to download the latest update 2 weeks go. My internet is pay by the MB, but hey, I should do this right? It took 5 hours to download the 6.5 GB update, but it wouldn’t install. An error message said I should shut off my antivirus and try to download again. WHAT? Checked on the net for this error message and MS had 3 pages of tech geek of what to do to TRY to get it to download and install. Not happening. Did a full back up and will take my chances. Very soon, will be buying a Mac Book. Enough is enough.

Posted by:

04 Apr 2018

HomeGroup RIP Adding other folders (besides Pictures, Videos, Music, and Documents) to the HomeGroup cannot be achieved w/o going thru additional hoops and more caveats (gotchas such as coordinated system time on all devices, and default being read-only access, etc.).
A FREEware (for personal use) called TeamViewer maybe a much better alternative. TeamViwer is also OS-agnostic, at LAN as well as WAN levels without going cloud(y), as Mr. Rankin prefers/recommends.

Posted by:

Art F
04 Apr 2018

I delayed installing the Fall Creators Update and had reason to regret doing so. One of my frequently used programs, Irfanview, had started crashing frequently in recent months. When I described the symptoms to the program's author, he immediately recommended making sure I had the latest Windows 10 update. Sure enough, installing the update cured the problem completely.

So, be aware that these major updates may include important bug fixes as well as the advertised features.

Posted by:

04 Apr 2018

I agree with Dave. I think you are wasting my time.

Posted by:

04 Apr 2018

Those are some very harsh and unnecessary words to post against Mr. Bob Rankin. I am hoping that your post was directed towards "Dave", as you cannot possibly be directing them against Mr. Rankin, himself.
Tsk, tsk!

Posted by:

05 Apr 2018

May I recommend frequent backups, especially if you are, or are not, installing updates? :)

Posted by:

05 Apr 2018

About the lose of Home Group! Also in ref to comments from bb & RandiO, Not knowing all details, does this also intrude on file/folder/drive sharing that you may be doing on your own home network? I currently share a backup drive in my Desktop PC with my Laptop so I can access all the files on that drive from either machine.

Posted by:

John N
11 Apr 2018

Home Group has been gone for some time.
I have a couple of pcs at home and have them connected using Network. Works great - when it's working.
However, after W10 updates (major and minor) in recent times, they lose contact with each other.
I fiddle for a while and manage to get them connected again until the next update comes along.
Currently I have a new problem where I can move files in one direction, but when trying to move in the other direction, I get a message "don't have permission".

Posted by:

John N
11 Apr 2018

Sorry guys - just realised I got a bit off topic.

Posted by:

13 Apr 2018

My computer did the April update and immediately my LaserJet printer wouldn't work. A friend, who is a computer engineer, spent an entire day working on it by teamviewer, and finally had to give up. He installed a universal printer driver on my computer to get it to talk to the printer. Wish it hadn't done this. If I had to pay a tech for this, might as well buy a new computer!

Posted by:

16 Apr 2018

I did the update on 4/14 and ever since, the Windows task bar doesn't work for getting on Internet Explorer (Chrome works), can't see Windows notifications, Windows menu doesn't work for finding anything or shutting down. When I try to sign out or shut down, I get a message that there is a critical error and they will try to have it fixed by the next time I sign in. That hasn't happened yet.

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