In this video, learn the different servicing channels available for Windows 10.
- [Instructor] Not every business moves to a new version of Windows immediately it's released. In fact, many businesses wait for a few years before changing. At the extreme end of the spectrum, whenever a version of Windows nears the end of support, many businesses only then consider adopting the newer version. This is because moving to a new operating system can cause huge pain for businesses. With Windows as a Service, Microsoft have introduced their concept of Servicing Channels, which gives businesses some flexibility on when they upgrade or migrate to the new operating system. Windows 10 forces businesses to remain up-to-date in order to stay secure, however, frequently updating devices in an enterprise can be disruptive to users, and it's extra work for IT administrators. Servicing Channels offers organizations some flexibility to choose when and how often their devices are updated to the latest build of Windows 10. There are three main Servicing Channels which give IT administrators choice, including Windows Insider, Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted), and Semi-Annual Channel. The Windows Insider Channel is aimed at IT pros and enthusiasts, such as your IT team and help desk. It offers early access to new features and pre-released versions of Windows 10. By enrolling just a few users with test machines running the Windows Insider Program version of Windows 10, IT pros can see new features that will be released in the next build ahead of time. They can also test compatibility issues and bugs before Windows is rolled out on general release. The Windows 10 Semi-Annual Servicing Targeted Channel offers feature updates, which are available as soon as Microsoft publishes them. Businesses running Pro, Enterprise, or Education versions of Windows 10 have the ability to delay feature updates for up to 365 days and the option to delay quality updates for up to 30 days. This channel is suitable for organizations who want to pilot deployments where Windows 10 features can be tested on a limited number of devices before being rolled out more fully. The Semi-Annual Channel is aimed at all other users in your organization. Computers configured in the Semi-Annual Channel receive Windows 10 approximately four to six months after the Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted) version. This allows plenty of time for any bugs or issues to be fixed within Windows 10 before it becomes available for your mainstream users. You still also have the ability to defer feature updates for up to 365 days and defer quality updates for 30 days. This channel is suitable for the majority of your users within an organization. Now that you have an understanding of Windows as a Service, let's view a suggested timeline for your internal deployment. The Windows Insider Program is the preview group, such as members of your IT department and help desk, therefore, this is your pilot group. The Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted) group is the pilot containing your early adopters, team leaders, and some remote workers. And the Semi-Annual Channel is the rest of your company, aimed at the mainstream workers. Notice the timings on-screen are over a long period of time to allow organizations plenty of time to manage the change. Although updates are fully tested before release, issues can still occur, and for critical IT systems, this is a risk that cannot be taken, therefore, Microsoft have created a special version of Windows 10 that enterprises can use. This version is supported for five years without feature updates, and it's called the Long-Term Servicing Channel. This is designed for specialized operations such as devices which control medical equipment or point-of-sale terminals. Devices enrolled into this Servicing Channel are running a specific version of Windows 10 called the Windows 10 LTSC, which prevents feature updates and does not have any universal Windows apps such as the Edge browser, Mail, or the Microsoft Store installed. Security updates will still be pushed to all devices, although these can be deferred. And finally, you should note that the Long-Term Servicing Channel is only available in the Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC edition and is a special downloadable image from your Volume Licensing portal or the Visual Studio subscription, and requires a clean install.
This course closely aligns to the first two domains of exam MD-101: Managing Modern Desktops: Deploy and update operating systems and Manage policies and profiles.
- Implementing Windows 10
- Provisioning packages
- Deploying Windows 10 using Windows Autopilot
- Upgrading to Windows 10
- Managing Windows Update for Business
- Managing device authentication
- Working with user profiles
- Managing Windows 10 using Microsoft Intune
- Managing policy precedence