There is almost always something happening in the world of Windows 10. Most recently, its servicing and deployment segment received some interesting updates.
Windows 10 Spring Update and SAC-T
Windows 10 Spring Update (i.e. Windows 10, version 1803) was released during the last week of April, 2018. On May 7, volume-license users received 1803 via Windows update. As you probably know, the Microsoft-recommended Windows 10 servicing model for commercial customers is the Semi-Annual Channel (SAC). Commercial customers see the term “Semi-Annual Channel Target” (SAC-T) on their Windows 10 release Info. This means their organization can begin a targeted deployment approach, starting with small groups and expanding to the whole organization. SAC-T offers the opportunity to defer the update and make it available to the organization through a phased approach using the right management tools. Here is Microsoft’s in-detail explanation. If you are interested in knowing the evolution of Microsoft servicing channels, we have put together a blog post on that.
Windows 10 Autopilot
As part of 1803, there were updates to Windows 10 Autopilot—including an enrollment status page. This page allows IT pros to add or change policies, settings, and apps before the user begins interacting with their device. It also helps organizations ensure every device is compliant and secure before it is used. For those not familiar with Windows Autopilot, it offers a new approach to deployment, requires minimal interaction from the user, and offers a sizable work and cost reduction. If you’d like to learn more, there are tons of resources from Microsoft out there—starting with Introducing Windows Autopilot. Currently, Autopilot supports Microsoft, Dell, and Lenovo devices—but look for it to broaden to HP, Toshiba, Panasonic, and Fujitsu starting this fall.
Following the slew of features that were announced for Windows 10 Autopilot in 1803, Microsoft also shared a few more updates—namely Self-Deploying Mode and Windows Autopilot Reset. These updates are in preview, and Microsoft believes that these additional features will take the Autopilot zero-touch experience even further.
SAC vs. LTSC: Why Microsoft wants You to Choose SAC Over LTSC
Even though the LTSB/LTSC option for Windows 10 has been widely opted by organizations due to its relatively static update nature, Microsoft recommends it for very few use cases. For other business use cases, Microsoft still recommends Semi-Annual Channel. This blog post from Microsoft explains it further. Another scenario our OEM team pointed out is that it only supports the processors available during its release in 2016. Organizations with newer processors—such as Intel’s 8th Generation—will have to wait for support when LTSC (formerly LTSB) releases in the fall of this year.
Windows 7 EoL
And last, but not least, Windows 7’s end of life is January 2020. The date is approaching fast, and you have some good reasons not to wait until the last moment to refresh. Also, be sure to reach out to us for all of your Windows 10 questions. The experts at Connection are always happy to help!