Windows 10: A guide to the updates

The launch of a major Windows 10 update like the May 2019 Update isn’t the end of a process — it’s really just the beginning. As soon as a big feature update is released, Microsoft quickly gets to work on improving it by fixing bugs, releasing security patches, and occasionally adding new features.

Here we’ve summarized what you need to know about every Windows 10 update being released to the public. First come updates to the currently shipping version of Windows 10 — version 1903, known as the May 2019 Update — with the most recent updates on top. (Note that the May 2019 Update is on a phased rollout, so you may not have received it yet.) Below that are updates to version 1809, known as the October 2018 Update; version 1803, the April 2018 Update; version 1709, the Fall Creators Update; and finally updates to version 1703, the Creators Update. For each build, we’ve included the date of its initial release and a link to Microsoft’s announcement about it.

Note: If you’re looking for information about Insider Program previews for upcoming feature releases of Windows 10, see “Windows 10 Redstone: A guide to the builds.” And if you’re still using an earlier version of Windows, see the Microsoft support site for details about updates to Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 version 1607 / Windows Server 2016.

Updates to the May 2019 Update (version 1903)

KB4505903 (OS Build 18362.267)

Release date: July 26, 2019

This build has more than three dozen bug fixes, including for an issue that prevented Windows Hello face recognition from working after a restart, another that prevented some people from changing the display brightness after their devices resumed from Sleep or Hibernation, another that reduced Bluetooth audio quality when certain audio profiles were used for extended periods, and another that caused a mouse press and release to sometimes produce an extra mouse movement.

There are several known issues in this build, including one in which Windows Sandbox may fail to start with “ERROR_FILE_NOT_FOUND (0x80070002)” on devices in which the operating system language is changed during the update process when installing Windows 10, version 1903, and another in which devices connected to a domain that is configured to use MIT Kerberos realms may not start up or may continue to restart. Devices that are domain controllers or domain members are both affected.

(Get more info about KB4505903.)

KB4507453 (OS Build 18362.239)

Release date: July 9, 2019

This build fixes several minor bugs, including one in which BitLocker would go into recovery mode when it was being provisioned at the same time updates were being installed, and another in which Mixed Reality users saw a tilted world after connecting their headsets.

Also included are security updates to Windows Wireless Networking, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Windows Server, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Kernel, Microsoft HoloLens, Internet Explorer, Windows Input and Composition, Windows Virtualization, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Microsoft Graphics Component, Microsoft Edge, and Windows Cryptography. For details, go to the July 2019 Security Update notes.

There are several known issues in this build, including one in which opening or using the Window-Eyes screen reader app may result in an error and some features may not function as expected, and another in which Windows Sandbox may fail to start with “ERROR_FILE_NOT_FOUND (0x80070002)” on devices in which the operating system language is changed during the update process when installing Windows 10, version 1903.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4507453.)

KB4501375 (OS Build 18362.207)

Release date: June 27, 2019

This build fixes a variety of minor bugs, including one in which the cursor didn’t display when it was hovered over the keyboard magnifier, and another that caused Office 365 applications to stop working after opening when they were deployed as App-V packages.

There is one known issue in the build, in which Windows Sandbox may fail to start with “ERROR_FILE_NOT_FOUND (0x80070002)” on devices in which the operating system language is changed during the update process when installing Windows 10, version 1903.

(Get more info about KB4501375.)

KB4503293 (OS Build 18362.175)

Release date: June 11, 2019

This build addresses only security issues. In one, the build prevents connections between Windows and Bluetooth devices that are not secure and use well-known keys to encrypt connections, including security fobs. You’ll have to contact the manufacturer of your Bluetooth device to see if there’s a software update for it. For more details, see CVE-2019-2102 and KB4507623.

Also included are security updates to Windows Virtualization, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Internet Explorer, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows Input and Composition, Windows Media, Windows Shell, Windows Server, Windows Authentication, Windows Cryptography, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows SQL Components, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, and Internet Information Services. For details, go to the June 2019 Security Update notes.

There is one known issue in the build, in which Windows Sandbox may fail to start with “ERROR_FILE_NOT_FOUND (0x80070002)” on devices in which the operating system language is changed during the update process when installing Windows 10, version 1903.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4503293.)

KB4497935 (OS Build 18362.145)

Release date: May 29, 2019

This build addresses two dozen minor bugs in the just-released version of Windows 10, including one in which a File Share Witness does not remove Server Message Block (SMB) handles, which causes a server to eventually stop accepting SMB connections, and another in which Night light mode may be turned off during display mode changes.

There are two known issues in the build, including one in which Windows Sandbox may fail to start with “ERROR_FILE_NOT_FOUND (0x80070002)” on devices in which the operating system language is changed during the update process when installing Windows 10, version 1903.

(Get more info about KB4497935.)

Windows 10 May 2019 Update (version 1903)

Release date: May 21, 2019

Version 1903, called the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, is the most recent feature update to Windows 10. Here’s a quick summary of what’s new for users in it. (For more details, see our full review.)

Windows 10 Home and Pro users can now control whether to install the twice-yearly feature updates like the Windows 10 May 2019 Update a new “Download and install now” option. However, when users’ current version of Windows reaches what Microsoft calls “end of service” — the point at which Microsoft no longer supports it — Windows 10 will install the latest feature update automatically. End of service is typically 18 months after a Windows 10 feature update is released.
Windows 10 users can pause any minor Windows updates that Microsoft issues in between the big feature updates for up to 35 days.
Cortana and the search box have been separated. To perform a Cortana search, you can say “Hey Cortana” and speak your search, click the Cortana icon to the right of the search box and speak, or press the Windows key + C and speak. All other searches are done by Windows Search.
You can now use search to find files in any location on your PC, not just in default libraries and folders like OneDrive, Documents, Downloads, Music, Pictures, Videos, and Desktop. However, that requires indexing, which reduces laptop battery life and could slow down PC performance.
You can uninstall more built-in apps than previously, including 3D Viewer (previously called Mixed Reality Viewer), Calculator, Calendar, Groove Music, Mail, Movies & TV, Paint 3D, Snip & Sketch, Sticky Notes, and Voice Recorder.

What IT needs to know: The Professional and Enterprise versions of Windows 10 get a new security tool called Windows Sandbox. It lets you test out software and websites in their own containers, so that if they’re dangerous, they can’t get to Windows 10 itself. Close the sandbox, and the software or website vanishes.

IT administrators can also extend the safety features of Windows Defender Application Guard beyond Edge browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox and an app from the Microsoft store. When users browse to an untrusted site in Chrome or Firefox, the site will open in Edge, inside a virtual machine using Windows Defender Application Guard.

Updates to the October 2018 Update (version 1809)

KB4497934 (OS Build OS 17763.529)

Release date: May 21, 2019

This build brings a major change to the way you update Windows 10. You no longer have to accept every one of Microsoft’s twice-yearly feature updates such as the just released Windows 10 May 2019 Update (version 1903). When there’s a new feature update available, a “Download and install now” link appears in the Windows Update Settings pane. If you don’t want to install it, don’t click the link.

However, there is one caveat: When your current version of Windows nears what Microsoft calls “end of service” — the point at which Microsoft no longer supports it — Windows 10 will install the latest feature update.

In addition, this update fixes more than 20 issues in the latest version of Windows 10, including one that caused Microsoft Edge to hide annotations added to a PDF file, such as inked notes, highlights and comments, and another that failed to record a local user’s last logon time even when the user had accessed the server’s network share.

There are a handful of issues with this build, including one in which when attempting to print from Microsoft Edge or other Universal Windows Platform (UWP) applications you may receive the error, “Your printer has experienced an unexpected configuration problem. 0x80070007e.” There may also be issues using the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) to start a device from a Windows Deployment Services (WDS) server configured to use Variable Window Extension.

(Get more info about KB4497934.)

KB4494441 (OS Build 17763.503)

Release date: May 14, 2019

This build fixes minor issues in the latest version of Windows 10, including one that caused zone transfers between primary and secondary DNS servers over TCP to fail, and another that caused “Error 1309” while installing or uninstalling certain types of .msi and .msp files on a virtual drive.

In addition, security updates are included for Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows Graphics, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Cryptography, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, Windows Kernel, Windows Virtualization, and Windows Server. For more information about them, see the May 2019 Security Updates Release Notes. 

There are several issues in the build, including one in which when attempting to print from Microsoft Edge or other Universal Windows Platform (UWP) applications you may receive the error “Your printer has experienced an unexpected configuration problem. 0x80070007e.” There may also be issues using the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) to start a device from a Windows Deployment Services (WDS) server configured to use Variable Window Extension.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4494441.)

KB4495667 (OS Build 17763.475)

Release date: May 3, 2019

This build fixes more than two dozen minor issues in the latest version of Windows 10, including one that caused some touch screens to stop working after restarts, and another that caused Internet Explorer Automation to fail in certain instances. The build also adds several minor features, including one that allows the built-in Administrator account to run Microsoft Office setup after downloading the installer in Microsoft Edge.

There are several issues in the build, including one in which Custom URI Schemes for Application Protocol handlers may not start the corresponding application for local intranet and trusted sites on Internet Explorer. There may also be issues using the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) to start a device from a Windows Deployment Services (WDS) server configured to use Variable Window Extension. And when attempting to print from Microsoft Edge or other Universal Windows Platform (UWP) applications, you may receive the error “Your printer has experienced an unexpected configuration problem. 0x80070007e.”

(Get more info about KB4495667.)

KB4493509 (OS Build 17763.437)

Release date: April 9, 2019

This build fixes a handful of minor bugs in the latest version of Windows 10, including one that may cause authentication issues for Internet Explorer 11 and other applications that use WININET.DLL, and another that may cause compound document (OLE) server applications to display embedded objects incorrectly if you use the PatBlt API to place embedded objects into the Windows Management Framework (WMF).

In addition, security updates are included for Windows Datacenter Networking, Windows Server, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, Windows Kernel, Windows Input and Composition, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Microsoft Graphics Component, Windows Virtualization, Windows MSXML, Windows SQL components, and Microsoft Edge. For more information about them, see the April 2019 Security Updates Release Notes.  

There are several known issues in the build, including one in which Custom URI Schemes for Application Protocol handlers may not start the corresponding application for local intranet and trusted sites on Internet Explorer. There may also be issues using the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) to start a device from a Windows Deployment Services (WDS) server configured to use Variable Window Extension.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4493509.)

KB4490481 (OS Build 17763.404)

Release date: April 2, 2019

This build fixes several dozen minor issues with the latest version of Windows 10, including one that prevented users from configuring their screens for high-dynamic-range (HDR) video playback, and another that failed to register USB cameras correctly for Windows Hello after their initial setup. It also fixes an issue that caused Windows to reuse an expired Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) lease if the lease expired while the OS was shut down, and another that prevented the authentication credentials dialog from appearing when an enterprise web server attempted to connect to the internet.

There are several issues in the build, including one in which Internet Explorer 11 and other applications that use WININET.DLL may have authentication issues, and another in which Custom URI Schemes for Application Protocol handlers may not start the corresponding application for local intranet and trusted sites on Internet Explorer.

(Get more info about KB4490481.)

KB4489899 (OS Build 17763.379)

Release date: March 12, 2019

This build fixes several minor issues with the latest version of Windows 10 and includes security patches. Among other issues, it fixes a tracking and device calibration issue in Microsoft HoloLens that some people have experienced. Although people may see an improvement 10 to 15 minutes after installing the update, Microsoft recommends resetting the holograms for best results.

In addition, security updates are included for Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Windows Shell, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows Kernel-Mode Drivers, Windows Server, Windows Linux, Windows Hyper-V, Windows Datacenter Networking, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Wireless Networking, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, Windows Kernel, Windows, and Windows Fundamentals. The Security Update Guide’s Release Notes has details.

There are several issues in the build, including one in which after installing the update on machines that have multiple audio devices, applications that provide advanced options for internal or external audio output devices may stop working unexpectedly.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4489899.)

KB4482887 (OS Build 17763.348)

Release date: March 1, 2019

This build fixes several dozen minor issues with the latest version of Windows 10. Among them is one that caused the Action Center to suddenly appear on the wrong side of the screen before appearing on the correct side and another that caused the screen to remain black after resuming from Sleep if the laptop lid was closed while the laptop was being disconnected from a docking station.

The build also turns on a patch called “Retpoline” for some Windows devices, which may improve protection against the Spectre variant 2 vulnerability. For more details, see “Mitigating Spectre variant 2 with Retpoline on Windows.”

There is one known issue in the build, in which Internet Explorer 11 may have authentication issues when two or more people use the same user account for multiple, concurrent login sessions on the same Windows Server machine.

(Get more info about KB4482887.)

KB4487044 (OS Build 17763.316)

Release date: February 12, 2019

This build fixes several minor issues with the latest version of Windows 10. Among them is one in which Windows Hello for Business Hybrid Key Trust deployment sign-on fails if Windows 2019 Server domain controllers (DC) are used for authentication. It also fixes a bug in Microsoft HoloLens that allows users to bypass the lock screen sign-in process in some workflows.

In addition, security updates are included for Microsoft Scripting Engine, Microsoft Edge, Windows Server, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, Internet Explorer, Windows Wireless Networking, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Input and Composition, Windows Graphics, and Windows App Platform and Frameworks. The Security Update Guide’s Release Notes has details.

There is one known issue in the build, in which after installing the previous build, KB4480116, some users cannot load a webpage in Microsoft Edge using a local IP address. Browsing fails or the webpage becomes unresponsive.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4487044.)

KB4476976 (OS Build 17763.292)

Release date: January 22, 2019

This build fixes 20 minor issues with the latest version of Windows 10. Among them is one in which File Explorer stopped working when you clicked the Turn On button for the timeline feature when the “Allow upload of user activities” group policy was disabled. This build also fixed a problem that caused Remote Desktop Services to stop accepting connections after accepting several connections, and another one that caused Microsoft Edge to stop working with certain display drivers.

There are two known issues in the build. In one, applications that use a Microsoft Jet database with the Microsoft Access 97 file format may fail to open if the database has column names greater than 32 characters. The database will display the error “Unrecognized Database Format.” In the other issue, after installing the previous build (KB4480116), some users some users cannot load a webpage in Microsoft Edge using a local IP address. Browsing fails or the webpage becomes unresponsive.

(Get more info about KB4476976.)

KB4480116 (OS Build 17763.253)

Release date: January 8, 2019

This minor build has several security updates and addresses a single minor issue. It fixes the problem in which using esentutl /p to repair a corrupt Extensible Storage Engine (ESE) database results in a mostly empty database that is corrupted and can’t be mounted.

One security update addresses a vulnerability in session isolation that affects PowerShell remote endpoints. For security reasons, from this build and onward, PowerShell remote endpoints cannot be configured to work with non-administrator accounts.

In addition, security updates are included for Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows MSXML, Windows Kernel, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Wireless Networking, Microsoft JET Database Engine, Windows Linux, Windows Virtualization, and the Microsoft Scripting Engine. The Security Update Guide’s Release Notes has details.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4480116.)

KB4483235 (OS Build 17763.195)

Release date: December 19, 2018

This minor build has only a single change: a security update to Internet Explorer.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4483235.)

KB4471332 (OS Build 17763.194)

Release date: December 11, 2018

This minor security update fixes an issue that may prevent the use of the Seek Bar in Windows Media Player when playing specific files. The issue does not affect normal playback.  The build also has security updates for Windows Authentication, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Internet Explorer, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Microsoft Graphics Component, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Wireless Networking, Windows Kernel, Microsoft Edge, and Microsoft Scripting Engine. See the Security Update Guide for details.

There are no known issues in the update.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4471332.)

KB4469342 (OS Build 17763.168)

Release date: December 5, 2018

This non-feature update fixes 20 minor issues, including one that can cause mapped drives to fail to reconnect after starting and logging onto a Windows device, and another in which there are long delays when taking a photo with the Camera app in certain lighting conditions.

There are two known issues in this update, including one in which users may not be able to use the Seek Bar in Windows Media Player when playing specific files. This issue does not affect normal playback. Microsoft expects a fix to be available in mid-December.

(Get more info about KB4469342.)

KB4467708 (OS Build 17763.134)

Release date: November 13, 2018

This update addresses several security issues, including security updates for Microsoft Edge, Windows Scripting, Internet Explorer, Windows App Platform and Frameworks, Windows Graphics, Windows Media, Windows Kernel, Windows Server, and Windows Wireless Networking.

In addition, it provides protections against a subclass of speculative execution side-channel vulnerability known as Speculative Store Bypass (CVE-2018-3639) for AMD-based computers. These protections are not enabled by default in the update. To turn the protections on after installing the update, follow the instructions in KB4073119. For Windows Server guidance, follow the instructions in KB4072698. Additionally, IT staff should follow the mitigations that have already been released for Spectre Variant 2 (CVE-2017-5715) and Meltdown (CVE-2017-5754).

In addition to the security updates, the build fixes several issues, including one that prevented users from signing in to a Microsoft account (MSA) as a different user if signing in a second time, and another that caused the on-screen keyboard to appear when running automated tests or when you install a physical keyboard.

There are two known issues in this update, one in which some users cannot set Win32 program defaults for certain app and file type combinations using the Open with… command or Settings > Apps > Default apps, and another in which Microsoft Notepad and other Win32 programs cannot be set as default applications.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4467708.)

KB4464455 (OS Build 17763.107)

Release date: November 13, 2018

This minor, non-feature update fixes a variety of small issues, including one in which Internet Explorer performance became degraded when using roaming profiles or when the Microsoft Compatibility List wasn’t being used. Other issues fixed include one that caused a long delay in taking a photo using the Camera app in certain lighting conditions, and one that caused applications to lose IPv4 connectivity when IPv6 is unbound.

There are two known issues in this update: one in which some users cannot set Win32 program defaults for certain app and file type combinations using the Open with… command or Settings > Apps > Default apps, and another in which Microsoft Notepad and other Win32 programs cannot be set as default applications.

(Get more info about KB4464455.)

KB4464330 (OS Build 17763.55)

Release date: October 9, 2018

This very minor, non-feature update fixes an issue in which an incorrect timing calculation may prematurely delete user profiles on devices subject to the “Delete user profiles older than a specified number of day” group policy. It also has security updates for Windows Kernel, Microsoft Graphics Component, Microsoft Scripting Engine, Internet Explorer, Windows Storage and Filesystems, Windows Linux, Windows Wireless Networking, Windows MSXML, the Microsoft JET Database Engine, Windows Peripherals, Microsoft Edge, Windows Media Player, and Internet Explorer. (Go to the Security Update Guide for more details about these updates.)

There are no known issues with the update.

What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.

(Get more info about KB4464330.)

Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809)

Release date: October 2, 2018; paused October 5; re-released November 13, 2018

Version 1809, called the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, is the feature update that preceded the May 2019 Update. Here’s a quick summary of what’s new for users in it. (For more details, see our full review.)

A new, powered-up Windows Clipboard can hold multiple clips, store clips permanently, let you preview clips and choose which one you’d like to paste into a document, and share clips across Windows 10 devices.
A new screenshot and annotation tool called Snip & Sketch lets you capture and annotate the entire screen, a rectangular portion of the screen or a freehand-drawn portion of it. After you take a screen capture, you can annotate it and then save it to a file, copy it to the Clipboard, open it in another program or share it email, social media and other methods.
Storage Sense, which helps save storage space, now works with OneDrive Files On-Demand to clean out files you’ve downloaded from OneDrive cloud storage to your PC but that you don’t use any longer. You can choose how long you would like the cloud files to stay on your PC unused before you want them deleted, from never to 60 days.
The Microsoft Edge browser lets you set autoplay permissions for sound and video on websites on a site-by-site basis. It also lets you look up word definitions in its built-in eReader for books and PDFs, and mark up PDFs and books using a highlighter and by adding notes.
The new Your Phone app links Windows 10 devices to iOS and Android phones. It allows you to start web browsing on an iOS or Android device and then continue where you left off on your PC. It also lets you view photos on your Android phone from your Windows 10 PC.
Search Previews have been powered up slightly. You no longer need to click to display the preview panel; it opens automatically. It also now shows files found on your PC.
Smaller changes include a new dark theme for File Explorer; the addition of the SwiftKey swipe keyboard, which lets you enter text by swiping a finger across an onscreen keyboard; updates that are less intrusive; and faster sign-ins on shared PCs.

What IT needs to know: There are few significant changes that affect IT in the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, other than New Microsoft Edge Group Policies that let admins enable and disable full-screen mode, printing, the favorites bar, and browser history saves. IT can also allow or ban Edge extensions (not that there are many available) and configure the Home button and new tab page and startup options.

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