Next Windows 10 Feature Update would need only 30 minutes of offline time for installation

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You must have felt restless when Windows 10 takes hours offline to install feature updates, even more so for the Insiders with the frequent updates. To reduce this system downtime during update installation, Microsoft has reordered their installation process for feature updates to save precious time lost during offline installation.

Dona Sarkar, head of the Windows Insider Program, announced this on Twitter:

Joseph Conway, Senior Program Manager on the Windows Fundamentals team, also shared this on Windows Insider Blogs:

To achieve this, we moved portions of the work done during the offline phases and placed it in the online phase. Because of these changes, the average offline time for the Fall Creator’s Update released last October has dropped to 51 minutes, a 38% improvement! But we didn’t stop there. We’ve done additional work in the upcoming Windows release to move portions of migration operations to the online phase as well. This has resulted in an overall reduction of offline time when installing builds in the Insiders Program to an average of 30 minutes. That’s a reduction of 63% from the Creators Update!

The new update model will prepare user content for migration as well as prepare temporary working directory for the new OS in the online stage itself, saving around 52 mins (63%) as tested in the Insiders builds. This would let users install features updates with decreased offline time, but will have to trade with increased online time, which shouldn’t be big of a deal as the process would run with low priority.

Here’s a comparision of old and the new installation procedure:

OLD Feature Update model NEW Feature Update model
Online
  • PC checks for available feature updates (manually or automatically)
  • Feature update payload is downloaded
  • PC waits for a required reboot to begin update installation
  • PC checks for available feature updates (manually or automatically)
  • Feature update payload is downloaded
  • User content is prepared for migration
  • New operating system is placed into a temporary working directory
  • PC waits for a required reboot to begin update installation
Offline
  • PC reboots to begin update installation process
  • User content is prepared for migration
  • New operating system is placed into a temporary working directory
  • Drivers and other required operating system files are migrated
  • User content is migrated
  • PC reboots and completes the update
  • OOBE begins
  • Average Offline time of 82 minutes
  • PC reboots to begin update installation process
  • Drivers and other required operating system files are migrated
  • User content is migrated
  • PC reboots and completes the update
  • OOBE begins
  • Average Offline time of 30 minutes (Insiders Program)

 

This new update model will be made available for Insiders shortly, while other users will have to wait till the next feature update to see it in action.

Microsoft has again proved that they’re continously listening to Insider feedback with this new upgrade to the update models. This is a welcome change, and I’m sure many Windows 10 users will appreciate it.

Source Windows Insider Blog
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