The next feature update for Windows 10, Windows 10 version 1903, may include better options to pause Windows updates and improve the operating system's Active Hours functionality.
One of the things that I hear over and over again from Windows administrators and users is that they would like control over the updating process.
Microsoft introduced two new update related features in the most recent Windows 10 Insider build. Both options have been added to the Windows Update page of the Settings application.
Just use Windows-I to open the Settings application and open Update & Security to see the new options. Note that these will be included in the next feature update; the new options are included in Insider builds only currently.
The very first change displays a pause option directly on the main Windows Update settings page. A click on "Pause updates for 7 days" blocks any updates for the selected period.
It is currently not possible to undo that on the same page; you need to open the advanced options and modify the pause period there. Seems unlikely that Microsoft will keep it like that on that page.
The feature is not really a new feature but it adds some visibility to the pause update functionality of the operating system.
Windows 10 users who want to pause for a different period need to open the Advanced options on the same page to do so.
Also worth noting is that some updates will still be installed; this is for instance the case for Windows Defender definition updates.
Active Hours was introduced in 2016 in Windows 10 as a way to block Windows from rebooting the device automatically after installation of updates.
The feature had several shortcomings including the fixed maximum length limit for the feature and missing options to set different Active hours depending on a schedule that deviates from a typical 9 to 5 work scenario.
Microsoft extended Active Hours to a maximum of 18 hours in previous versions already. The change in Windows 10 version 1903 introduces a dynamic component to Active Hours. A click on Active Hours under Windows Update displays the new option: Automatically adjust active hours for me based on my daily usage adjusts Active Hours automatically based on device activity.
If that will lead to fewer unwanted reboots of the system or more remains to be seen. Windows recommended to set Active Hours from 14:00 to 15:00 on my test system which seemed awfully short considering that I work on the machine regularly.
The operating system highlights the recommended period for Active Hours on the page so that you know what it will be set to initially. Since it is dynamic, it might -- and probably will -- change on a day to day basis.
Now You: Which changes would you like to see in this regard?Advertisement
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.