It won’t be long now before we see the latest update to Windows 10, the Autumn version, also known as 1709.
That will then be the fourth update in just over the 2 years that Windows 10 has been around, and you can expect future updates at roughly the same rate in the past.
This new update when released can be expected to have loads of changes both for the users and the developers.
So, what can we look forward to? The crystal ball points to elements of Microsoft’s new ‘Fluent Design’ being added, which should add performance and user improvements, including easier resizing for the varying devices on which you use Windows 10 as your operating system, i.e. whether you use a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone, and smoother transitions.
Notifications, on the righthand side of the screen, as part of Action Centre, is redesigned to make it easier to deal with notifications.
If you are into using Cortana, previously only available from within the Cortana app, you can expect that it is now integrated into the Settings, and that it displays answers in a flyout from the Start menu. That also shows results from web searches, though only those from the Bing search engine. Cortana will now also make use of the space to the right of the Start.
As for when new updates are available an interactive notification which does not interfere or interrupt what you are doing will be shown, and perhaps more importantly the Update display now offers details about the status of individual updates so you no longer wonder whether anything is happening in the background, and also more details of individual updates.
A few other noteworthy changes include the reorganization and streamlining of Settings>System>About so instead of a single long, scrolling list they have broken the information into 3 groups: System Health, information of devices, Windows details, and for those interested in remote Desktop settings, which were spread over a number of locations, these now have been brought together in Settings>System>Remote Desktop.
If you use the magnifier tool frequently, a tool that really does ease eyestrain because you can zoom in on text or objects, then the magnifier now gets its own top-level category in Settings>Ease of use.
There are a number of updates relating primarily to business and Security, but for you and me there are also a new anti-ransomware feature that becomes available through Windows Defender Security Centre. When you activate this feature only approved apps can access Windows’ system files and data folders.
OneDrive gets an update with a OneDrive on Demand feature built-in to Windows and provides a better way to work with large amounts of cloud storage where your local storage on your device is minimal, and storage management has a new design and some new settings. You can also arrange to have files in your Downloads folder automatically deleted after 30 days when there has been no change to the file.
Improvements have been made to Edge, the Windows browser, though if you are a Chrome browser user it is unlikely that these improvements will make you change browser. Edge has beefed up its PDF reading capability and added notes and annotations for digital books that you read in Edge.
And for a bit of fun press the Windows key + semicolon and up pops an emoji box to allow you to enter emoji directly into the text box.
The Creators Update is heading pretty much to every PC with Windows 10, and that’s 500 million PCs worldwide and it is mostly stabilizing what is known as Build 16273, i.e. bug fixes, so overall how much of this that matters to you is very much a matter of your priorities.
One final point. If you are still running Windows 7 be aware that when Microsoft brings out the update and bug fixes and security updates for Windows 10 they do not automatically patch the same bugs in Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. This leaves clues for hackers and other nasties to pinpoint security weaknesses in these operating systems, hence our advice to upgrade when requested by Microsoft.