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How To Get the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Microsoft today released the Windows 10 fall creators update, which is broadly available.

This Windows 10 fall creators update (version 1709) is known as a "semiannual channel (targeted)" release, which means that it's designed for testing by organizations. Later, it'll arrive as a semiannual channel release for testing and deployment at an organization, according to Microsoft's update scheme. Consumer users, on the other hand, may get this release directly, if available, since the operating system bits will get gradually rolled out by Microsoft to consumer users.

Consumers can delay this upgrade when it's available, but they can't wholly block it. It's possible for them to manually download and install Windows 10 version 1709, too, to get it right away, but Microsoft just advises that approach for "advanced users," as described here. The usual course for consumers is to wait for the update's automatic arrival via the Windows Update service.

In addition, Microsoft today showcased its new Surface Book 2. It notably runs the new Windows 10 fall creators update OS.

ISO with Combined Editions
IT pros looking to deploy the new OS are getting bit of change with the Windows 10 fall creators update release. Microsoft has combined the editions for its ISO release. IT pros will find a single ISO containing bits for the Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise and Education editions.

When deploying the Windows 10 fall creators update using the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit or System Center Configuration Manager, IT pros need to use "the appropriate image index in any task sequences that you create or update," explained Michael Niehaus, director of product marketing for Microsoft's Windows Commercial group, in this announcement. The announcement lists the index numbers to use for each of the six Windows 10 fall creators update editions. Microsoft also has published a new version of the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit that supports Windows 10 version 1709.

Users of the Windows Server Update Services solution for managing updates will just see one package, instead of multiple packages. The Windows 10 fall creators update is said to be available today for WSUS users. It's also supposed to be available at the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC) portal, and accessible by Visual Studio subscribers.

It seems that Microsoft has replaced its MSDN subscriber portal with a new My Visual Studio site. MSDN users expressed surprise about that change in this Microsoft forum page, where downloads were described as being difficult to find. Microsoft has an FAQ on the new My Visual Studio portal here. The FAQ is last dated March 10, 2017, so the portal switch apparently has been in effect for months, at least for some users.

System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) users need to have updated their SCCM software to version 1706 to deploy the Windows 10 fall creators update. That version of SCCM is backward compatible with the latest Windows 10 update release, according to a table in this Microsoft article. The article also noted that the use of SCCM version 1706 to deploy the Windows 10 fall creators update is dependent on having the latest Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (version 1709) installed.

Free Tools
Microsoft also offers a free 90-day trial of the Windows 10 Enterprise edition version 1709, which is available at this page.

Other free tools to prepare for Windows 10 version 1709 include the Windows Analytics Upgrade Readiness tool and Windows 10 Virtual Labs for getting learning materials. The Windows 10 Deployment and Management Lab Kit, a virtual lab environment preconfigured by Microsoft, is still being readied to support Windows 10 version 1709.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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