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https://www.howtogeek.com/398226/now-windows-10-has-c-b-and-d-updates.-what-is-microsoft-smoking/


RV_
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OK, after the slew of not ready for prime time October updates they have redone at least four times, now I find a new set of parameters that I am trying to digest. I strongly recommend reading the entire How To Geek article which with the screen shots explains it for all of us. I only excerpted the section titles which without reading the article may be misleading or confusing.

Excerpt:

"What Is a Cumulative Quality Update?

Microsoft calls these “quality updates,” and each is released once per month. This distinguishes them from the big “feature updates” like the October 2018 Update and 19H1 that are released once every six months, usually in the Spring and Fall.

“B” Updates: Patch Tuesday

The big updates most people are familiar with come out on “Patch Tuesday,” the second Tuesday of the month. These are called “B” updates because they’re released in the second week of the month.

“C” and “D” Updates Are For Unwitting Seekers

Here’s where it gets ugly: Windows Update doesn’t automatically install C and D updates on most PCs. However, it does install C and D updates when you head to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update and click “Check for Updates.” In Microsoft’s world, this makes you a “seeker” who wants to test these updates before most Windows users get them. Microsoft disclosed this in a recent blog post.

So, if you click “Check for Updates” in the third, fourth, or first week of a month before the next B update has been released, you’ll probably get a C or D update installed on your system. If you never click “Check for Updates,” you’ll stick with the better-tested B updates.

Out-of-Band Updates: Urgent Patches Only

Microsoft also occasionally releases “out-of-band” updates. These are urgent patches that don’t follow the normal release schedule.

For example, if there’s a big new security bug that has to be fixed immediately or a problem that’s causing some Windows 10 PCs to blue screen, Microsoft may fix it with an immediate patch. That means everyone gets the fix as soon as possible.

Feature Updates: Big Updates Every Six Months

There are also “feature updates,” which are big upgrades to Windows 10 and are released every six months. These are separate from the monthly “quality updates.” They’re basically entire new versions of Windows 10, and Microsoft gradually rolls them out to PCs."

The original article is a must read here: Windows c, b, and d updates if you run Windows and are only doing updates when you have good connections by clicking on "Check for Updates," Or do that every patch Tuesday like I have been doing. I have reset my Pro computers and my mindset to automatically install updates which is safer. That way I get the tested safest updates. I am no longer a techie fixing computers and building systems for others as of now, and may get back on the fast loop of the "Windows INsider" progam I used to do before versions were even available to users like the pre-Windows 8 developer's editions I tested on a testbed laptop with SSD and max RAM and two drives I swapped out, one HD with Windows 7 and one SSD that only had the developer's editions on it in 2011-October 2012 when Windows 8 was released officially and new computers all came with it.

 

Another article that is less technical from How to Geek is this one:

Watch Out: Clicking “Check for Updates” Still Installs Unstable Updates on Windows 10

Click here

Edited by RV_
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Derek,

Here's a condensed version. that I sent to a good friend a couple of hours ago.  You posted more promptly than I did.

------------

Per the linked MS blog post "We also release optional updates in the third and fourth weeks of the month, respectively known as “C” and “D” releases. These are for ... users “seeking” updates."  These updates enable testing of fixes that will be included in the next Update Tuesday release.

I don't want to be an unwitting MS code tester.  I'll wait for pushed files that will be automatically installed on restart. I don't recall ever being eager to install a monthly update.

https://blogs.windows.com/windowsexperience/2018/12/10/windows-monthly-security-and-quality-updates-overview/

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Dan,

Yes more succinct but many here want the details as I did to make sure we are making fully informed decisions. I have always wanted updates manually earliest since the Windows 98 days when malware producers would reverse engineer the patches and then attack the estimated 50% of Windows users that never updated. I wanted the locks to the doors of malware opportunity closed before they could attack. Then under Windows 7 the same applied, except it was more pressing because they would have the patches reverse engineered and begin attacks within an hour or two of update release.. Windows 10 until recently was the same, and now I am actually resetting all of my computers one at a time once I am sure that the Windows updates are stable again as long as I do not check for updates.

Then I will have them set to either install updates automatically normally, or since all are Pro machines I can set then to defer for the maximum time and not update at all when bad ones like last October's updates come down the pike.

I've had to reset my Surface Pro 4 twice so far because Microsoft keeps sending me defective supposedly repaired units under warranty repair. The first had a non functional SD card slot and this one has one that is functional but almost requires breaking it to get the fragile micro SD card in. As well it has the screen shaking problem I sent the first one in for repair.

So I am getting very good with resets and backups.

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