Organizations may soon save a lot of bandwidth when they deploy feature updates for machines running Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system.
Microsoft revealed last Wednesday that it provides organizations with smaller package sizes for 64-bit versions of Windows 10.
The change, which affects Microsoft commercial customers who use Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) or System Center Configuration Manager, will reduce the size of x64 updates by about 2.2 Gigabyte according to Microsoft.
The new x64-only feature updates for Windows 10 have a size of about 2.6 Gigabytes which means that update size has nearly been cut in half.
Microsoft offers the new packages in addition to current packages. The core difference between the x64-only packages and classic packages is that the classic package includes x64 and x86 files.
Customers who require x86 feature updates will be able to select the classic packages to do so.
Configuration Manager or other enterprise management solutions can pull the x86 files from that feature update download to deploy as they did before.
The new packages that deliver x64-only versions of Windows 10 are already available for Windows 10 version 1703, 1709, and 1803. A package for Windows 10 version 1809 will be provided as soon as the operating system is released (which will happen in early October 2018).
The x64-only feature updates are available for all language versions that are available as RTM, e.g. EN-US for English United States.
The new x64-only packages include only the RTM content of the feature update. The packages don't include any updates released after the release of the feature update to the stable channel. In other words, system administrators may install the latest cumulative updates or other updates to bring systems up to date.
Users who use Windows 10 at Home or in smaller businesses may wonder if the changes apply to them as well. The answer is simple: Windows Update delivers the right package automatically already to reduce the size of the update package.
Microsoft switched to a new update method called Express Updates recently which promises even smaller update sizes going forward. You can check out this article on new updating terminology that Microsoft introduced recently as well.
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