Microsoft is rolling out the Windows 10 Anniversary Update this week, here's the good and the not-so-good details.
There's quite a lot going on with the Microsoft Anniversary update. I've rounded up a list of useful resources for you. If you're planning on upgrading, you may want to hold off until some bugs get worked out. The update is rolling out slowly from what I've read so you probably have some time. If you've already received the upgrade, I've supplied a link with directions for uninstalling the upgrade. If you want to defer it, there's a way to do that too.
Probably the most important piece of information you need to know is that Microsoft has changed the rollback period from 30 days to 10 days. If you install the Windows 10 Anniversary update, you now have 10 days from the date of installation to revert to your previous version of Windows instead of the original 30 days.
The Anniversary Update brings some improvements and fixes for annoyances that have been around since Windows 10 launched, and some changes that are less than welcome; more advertising, less control over what you can do to your system, and changes to the Group Policy in Windows 10 Professional edition. And for the moment, you can still get Windows 10 free under some circumstances.
For a detailed explanation of what's going on with many users and an overview of the changes in the Anniversary Update, check out Woody Leonhard's article:
The case against Windows 10 Anniversary Update grows
I highly recommend reading this article, especially if you plan on upgrading to the Anniversary Update. There are issues being reported that range from Cortana being broken by the update to instances of people having problems that include freezing, disappearing drives, and problems with device drivers.
Here's how to defer the Windows Anniversary update in Windows Pro:
How to delay the Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Windows Home users don't have the same options, but there are ways to delay or block updates:
Block Windows 10 forced updates without breaking your machine
If you want to uninstall the Anniversary Update, directions are here:
How To Uninstall Windows 10 Anniversary Update
These two articles detail the changes Microsoft is making to Group Policy:
Microsoft removes policies from Windows 10 Pro
More forced advertising creeps into Windows 10 Pro
Some examples of things Group Policy won't be able to do anymore with the Anniversary Update: turn off certain ads, turn off consumer experiences, turn off Windows tips, turn off the Lock Screen, and you can't disable apps from the Windows Store. The only way at the moment to avoid these changes is to upgrade to the Enterprise version. As that involves volume licensing it's not much of an option for individual users. Normally after Microsoft makes these changes, ways to get around them start to appear. I hope that's the case here.
Here's a great overview of what Microsoft has refined and improved in the Anniversary Update:
All the Coolest Features of Windows 10's Anniversary Update
Don't have the Anniversary Update and want it now? Get it here:
Windows 10 Anniversary Update (You'll have to download the ISO and mount it or burn it to disc)
You can still get Windows 10 Upgrade for free for now. Here's two different ways:
Forget the deadline, you'll still be able to get Windows 10 for free
Free Windows 10 Upgrade Still On for Windows 7/8 keys
Can't decide whether to upgrade to Windows 10 or not? I've reviewed several articles on why you would want to upgrade or stay with your current version of Windows. These are the two I think offer the most relevant points both for and against:
5 Reasons to upgrade to Windows 10
10 reasons you shouldn't upgrade to Windows 10
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