Windows 10 is slated to be the last major Windows desktop release, but that does not mean Microsoft is abandoning the Windows operating system. Microsoft is just taking a different approach than it has in the past.
Microsoft used to deliver a new version of Windows every few years. Customers had to pay a licensing fee to get the upgrade, and then they had to work through a sometimes painful migration process. The other disadvantage to this upgrade model was that customers had to wait for long periods of time to get updated features.
Microsoft's new approach to OS deployments involves perpetual updates to the Windows 10 operating system that regularly add new functionality to Windows 10. It is probably unrealistic to think that Windows 10 will really be the final Microsoft Windows operating system, but it will likely be the last one released for quite some time.
Perpetual update wisdom
Microsoft's approach is not entirely unprecedented. Google takes a similar tack: It uses an automatic update process that ensures that Chromebooks always run the newest version of the Chrome operating system.
Microsoft categorizes Windows 10 updates in a way that gives administrators a little bit more control. Security updates are treated differently than feature updates, so an administrator might apply a security update relatively quickly, but he can opt to hold off on certain feature updates until he can test them thoroughly.
Presumably, it is possible to avoid installing feature updates altogether if the new functionality is not something that an organization needs.
Task View in Windows 10 brings native virtual desktops
How Windows 10 can improve on problems of Windows 8
Windows 10 brings opportunity to fix desktop virtualization licensing
Windows 10 emphasizes portability, manageability and security
Some potential problems in the Windows 10 preview
Dig Deeper on Windows OS and management
Related Q&A from Brien Posey
Without a Windows 11 registry backup, IT risks breaking the OS by making edits. Find out how easy it is to back up the Windows 11 registry. Continue Reading
While Google Cloud Storage has several limitations, these three are among the most prevalent -- but users have straightforward ways to get around ... Continue Reading
Unpredictable user behavior and boot storms can cause VDI resource usage fluctuations throughout the day. IT can take steps to identify and curtail ... Continue Reading