The first major update to Windows 10 – known variously as the November Update, Threshold 2 (TH2) or the Fall Update – is now making its way out to users via Windows Update. The update brings new features , bug fixes and some under-the-covers management functionality to enjoy.
Any Brits who grind their teeth over the use of “fall” (now a North American term, where the rest of the English-speaking world still refers to the season as Autumn) might want to know that in the 17th century, the season was known in Britain as “fall”, but only became “autumn” through the Latin/French influences after the American colony had been established. So there.
If you’re patient, you should be offered the update via Windows Update (if a home / non-domain-joined PC), though if your Windows 10 PC is run by your company, there may be a managed deployment of the upgrade.
If you’re less patient, and you’re not using Windows 10 Enterprise, then you can force the update by re-running Windows Setup – it’s a bit of a palaver as you’re essentially running a full re-install of Windows over the top of your existing setup, although all your settings, files, applications etc will be maintained. If running from home, best allow a couple of hours.
Go to the Get Windows 10 page, click on Upgrade now and go through the wizard just as if you’re upgrading from Windows 7 or 8 to Windows 10, even if you’re already running Windows 10. This process uses the most up to date version of Windows 10 – the November update, included – to run the setup and to upgrade whatever you’re running already.
There are lots of new features in the November Update, such as a “Find my Device” function in Settings -> Update & Security. There are other improvements to Cortana, Tablet mode, Edge, and Skype. More fodder for another tip or two.
The November update brings Windows 10 to version 1511 build 10586 (where, according to Paul Thurrott, 1511 denotes the year & month of the major release). If you’re not sure which version of Windows you’re running, try typing ver at the Start menu, and choose the “See if you have …” option – or visit Settings | System | About to see the current version & build.
Only after the November update will you see the “Version” & “OS Build” details appear. This should be an indicator of the pace of major updates – if “Threshold” (aka Windows 10 RTM) was effectively version 1507 build 10240, and TH2 is 1511, then who knows when RS1 (or “Redstone 1”?) will arrive?
Another quick way of getting the same kind of info is to run winver at the Start menu.
Or try msinfo32 if you want an old-school look at your PC’s software and hardware config.