Category Archives: Windows OS Musings

Remembering Santayana’s Dictum Win10-Wise

I learned this one as “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Turns out that upon checking Santayana’s aphorism, it’s actually “Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.”  But when it comes to remembering Santayana’s dictum Win10-wise, I was forced to re-learn an important lesson today. Let me explain…

What Remembering Santayana’s Dictum Win10-Wise Means

A funny thing happened to me today: I installed KB4598291 but it didn’t show up in Update History nor in its Control Panel counterpart under Programs and Feaures. Why was this? Because I’d wandered off the update track to force my test PC ahead to 19043.XXX builds using a series of linked DISM statements. Sigh.

Today, I learned why that’s a BAD IDEA. When I realized that something was amiss, I learned that things were further out of whack than I’d dreamed possible. The hack meant that I could no longer use the tried-and-true “in-place upgrade repair install” technique to return my test PC to some semblance of normality.

That Key Doesn’t Work. Try Another…

I used UUPdump.ml to build a customized install ISO for 19042.789. But when I tried to run same on my “unofficial” 19043.782 machine, the installer asked for a Windows 10 key before it would proceed. None of the following worked:

  1. The generic Windows 10 Pro key
  2. The actual key for the current install, as elicited by Showkey Plus
  3. A still active MAK key for Windows 10 Pro I purchased from Crayon, Inc. in 2018

Ouch! I was in trouble. Fortunately, i was able to restore a backup from a time when this test PC was still on the regular Beta/Release Preview build track. Once I’d done that, I was able to catch up and bring the PC up to build 19042.789, as shown in the lead-in graphic for this story.

The Moral of the Story

I’d been warned by friends and colleagues that wandering off the usual Insider Preview track is OK for experiments, but not for ongoing use. Now I know why: once you hit the next Cumulative Update (as I did today) the off-track releases will get weird in a hurry. My advice: learn from my mistake, and don’t go there, unless it’s on a throwaway VM. I now understand that’s how I should have played that, too. Live and learn!

 

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My Insider Preview Working Routine Revealed

On January 18, I reported here that the Insider Team at MS renewed my Windows Insider MVP (WIMVP) status for 2021. Since that renewal came through, I’ve been keeping an eye on my daily activities and taking notes. Now, I’m prepared to share a mini-expose. It’s what I call “My Insider Preview working routine revealed,” as in the title for this story. I’ll explain what it means, what I do, and how much time it takes to stay involved in the program.  Here goes…

Digging In: Insider Preview Working Routine Revealed

There are 5 major activities involved in the Insider Preview working routine, as far as I can tell. I’ll enumerate them first, then provide some details and ruminations.

  1. Dealing with Insider Preview releases
  2. Reporting on installation and use experiences
  3. Researching news and reports related to Insider Preview Releases
  4. Participating in the WIMVP community
  5. Raising awareness for Windows 10 plus related tools and utilities

1. Dealing with Insider Preview releases

I watch all the release channels — namely Dev, Beta, and Insider Preview, with at least 2 test machines devoted to each channel. Every time a new release comes out, I go through a specific drill, as follows:

  • Download and install the release
  • Observe any issues, hiccups or out-of-baseline behaviors during the install and initial trip to the desktop
  • Perform post-install clean-up, which consists of deleting Windows.old, running file cleanup, and making a fresh backup of the new version in Macrium reflect
  • Report on experience and findings at TenForums.com in the News forum and, if necessary, in the Installation and Upgrade forum
  • Check Event logs and Reliability Monitor for out-of-the-ordinary stuff
  • Report anything interesting or noteworthy to Feedback hub

As occasional updates to IP releases emerge, I repeat the steps above except for post-install clean-up, though I may run DISM /online /cleanup-image /analyzecomponentstore to see if any install packages need cleaning up in the wake of the new update. Sometimes they do, and sometimes they don’t.

I do about 6 of these a week on average, where each one takes anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour if everything works as it should. Sometimes, troubleshooting can take an hour or more, as when troubleshooting installation failures. Right now, for example, I’m dealing with a Bug Check 0xA IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL stop error on Build 21301 on one of my test machines.  I may not get this resolved until after dinner tonight because I have three deadlines to meet today (this article, a story for ComputerWorld, and a blog post for ActualTechMedia).

2. Reporting on installation and use experiences

Once I get the IP release installed and cleaned up, I start using it from time to time. As I observe its behavior and try out commands, programs, apps and utilities, I report any issues I encounter to Feedback hub. This depends a lot on my overall workload and may involve only 10 minutes on some days, and an hour or two on others. Varies a lot.

3. Researching news and reports related to Insider Preview Releases

I read the Windows 10 coverage on at least a half-dozen sites daily to keep up with current events, reported bugs and issues, emerging features and rumors of same. I also keep a partial eye on Microsoft business and tech news, as well as PC software and hardware industry news. This takes me at least an hour a day; longer if I get interested in something and start tracking stuff down. My daily visits include WinAero.com, Windows Latest, MSPowerUser, NeoWin, OnMSFT, Ghacks, ZDNet, Windows Central, and TenForums.com (where I try to read all new threads every day).

4. Participating in the WIMVP community

I belong to the WIMVP Yammer group, and scan its posts daily. We have weekly meetings to discuss Windows 10 topics which I sometimes attend (but not always). When we have online meetings — as we will later this morning — I try to attend those pretty regularly. I make a point of attending our conferences, and used to enjoy the physical ones. Now, like everybody else, I get what I can from their online/virtual counterparts, and look forward to when traveling for a real meet-up is once again possible. This takes me an hour or two a week on average, with 2-3 full days for conferences.

5. Raising awareness for Windows 10 plus related tools and utilities

I’m always on the lookout for good Microsoft-built or third-party tools, utilities, scripts, and whatnot. As I find them, I write about them in my daily reporting, and try to get articles placed to write about them in more detail and depth. You can get an inkling of what I do from my end-of-last-year story here Top 3 2020 Utilities. This is about the most fun I get to have in this role, but seldom takes more than an hour or two a week, sometimes less.

I also give an annual Windows 10 presentation at the Spiceworks SpiceWorld conference, and try to pick up other speaking and presenting gigs as they make themselves available. If you want me to talk about Windows 10 stuff at your conference and I don’t have a conflict, I’d be happy to oblige. Contact me through Ed Tittel Contact Info, where you’ll find an email form that goes straight into my inbox.

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Pondering Windows Experience Pack Updates

I’m still at the point where it’s all sinking in. Thus, I read with interest at WindowsLatest this morning that “Microsoft is testing another new Windows 10 Experience Pack update.” I went to check update history on one of my Release Preview machines (the Surface Pro 3). And sure enough, I see a corresponding update to match the Experience Pack version info from Settings → System → About shown in the lead-in graphic. That’s got me pondering Windows Experience Pack updates in general, and hoping we’ll see them put to work for something more … err … substantial that screencap tweaks in the near future.

Pondering Windows Experience Pack Updates.update-history

While Pondering Windows Experience Pack Updates, I Hope for More Action

Once I learned that KB4601906 was in the picture for this change, I jumped first to the Microsoft Catalog to see if it was there. No such luck. Likewise, as is often the case, a search on KB4601906 through Google turns up lots of third-party hits, but nothing from MS itself. Clicking on the link in update history, however, is another story. That gets me to an MS Support item named January 12, 2021—KB4598242 (OS Builds 19041.746 and 19042.746). That takes me to a blurb on the wrong Knowledge Base article. A direct search for “KB4601906” at MS Support turns up … nada.

Of course, I learned what I could from WindowsLatest and other similar items from TenForums and other places. @Brink reproduces the Windows Insider blog item that finally sheds a little light on the subject. In that item, Brandon LeBlanc says

We are improving the reliability of screen snipping experience, especially with apps that access the clipboard often.

More importantly, near the end of his post, he goes on to say

…we are testing this new process out with Insiders to deliver new feature improvements to customers outside of major Windows 10 feature updates. Right now, we are starting out with a really scoped set of features and improvements. Over time, we hope to expand the scope and the frequency of releases in the future.

No News Is … No News

I get it now, and think I already understood this. MS is working with the Windows Experience Pack as a way to deliver new feature improvements without resorting to a semi-annual feature upgrade. They’re still testing and haven’t done anything serious or significant with this yet. But they will, someday. Soon, I hope. Stay tuned!

 

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Build 19043 Becomes Likely 21H1 Candidate

The rumors started flying yesterday, first at WindowsLatest. But I couldn’t find evidence through the data they provided to back that up in the Windows registry. Then, this morning Sergey Tkachenko at WinAero.com came out with some more tangible proof in the form of registry key/value names to demonstrate that 21H1 action is afoot. I’m now inclined to agree that Build 19043 becomes likely 21H1 candidate for a Spring release.

Strong Hints Mean Build 19043 Becomes Likely 21H1 Candidate

In his story, Tkachenko proposes a string value  of Microsoft-UpdateTargeting-ClientOS vb_release_svc_prod3 10.0.19043.782 for an ultimate value of the Microsoft-Windows-21h1Enablement key. Just for grins, I searched on that value, and found nothing like it in either of my Release Preview (Build 19042.782) test machines.

Careful reading of his post leads me to  this analysis. Because 19041 became 20H1 and 19042 20H2, he’s guessing that 19043  matches up to 21H1. But so far, I’ve seen no hard evidence to support this assumption. That said, I do believe he may be right. I’ve seen nothing whatsoever to contradict equating 19043 with 21H2, either. And indeed, it is shared by many other Windows followers online.

How Much Longer Before We Know?

If you believe poster “moinmoin” at WindowsModder.de, an enablement package could appear as soon a next Patch Tuesday (February 9).  And if not then, he says, surely on or before the following Patch Tuesday (March 9).

It all depends on how this latest Release Preview update goes within the Insider Preview population that downloads and uses KB4598242. This test of the enablement package’s stability and usability, based on telemetry from its installers, could have a major impact on when 21H1 sees the light of day. If things go well, and no major issues or errors manifest, then sooner. If contrariwise, then later. We’ll see!

[NOTE}: To get the complete details on the Registry information from the lead-in photo from this story, right-click that image and select “View Image” (Firefox). Or, use your browser’s syntax to view the image by itself. Then you can read the values on-screen. HTH.

OK, Then: It’s Settled (January 24, 2021)

Thanks to a sequence of DISM commands that German-speaking Windows wizard “moinmoin” has shared at DeskModder.de, we now know how to “upgrade” PCs running Insider Beta or Release Preview channel build 19042.782 (or higher, presumably). I share all those details in a new article here entitled 19043 aka 20H1 Early Try-out How-to. I’d have to say this locks in the 19043/20H1 nomenclature conclusively, unless MS introduces a seismic shift in naming conventions between now and when 21H1 goes public.

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Lenovo X220 Tablet Hits IME Wall

I knew it was coming, but not when. I’ve already retired my Lenovo T520 laptop. I bought them together, so my X220 tablet has the same CPU — an i7-2640M Sandy Bridge– and  a 6 Series/C200 Series chipset. In the wake of the latest Dev Channel (Fast Ring) 21286 Build, this machine is now throwing  Intel Management Engine errors. As the lead-in screencap shows it tells me “ME is in Recovery State.” Then, it hangs until I hit the proverbial “Any Key.” When I say the Lenovo X220 Tablet hits IME wall, I’m really saying it’s too old for the installer. Simply put, Windows 10 apparently doesn’t know what to do with this old hardware any more.

If Lenovo X220 Tablet Hits IME Wall, Then What?

I can keep this machine going for a while yet, but I can tell its days are numbered. Upon investigation, its most current IME drivers and software date to the Windows 8.0 and 8.1 era. And then, there’s this cheery warning on the drivers and software download page for the X220 Tablet:

Key phrases in the warning are “no longer being actively supported” and “available ‘as-is'”. Translation: PC is old, and you’re on your own. [Click image for full-sized view.]

I found some fascinating discussion from others who’ve had this problem with this PC and others of its vintage. The most interesting item is at Bill Morrow’s Thinkpads.com forum. It prescribes a firmware hack as the best fix, which more or less turns off the Intel Management Engine (more recently renamed to Active Management Technology, or AMT).

To use this approach, I would have to buy a cheap (under US$20) EEPROM burner. Then I’d need to hack the bits for the BIOS myself  (through a Python program named ME_CLEANER).

I’m still chewing on whether or not I really want to do this. I will keep it running as it stands as long as I can, I think. I’ll pass it along to my old buddy Ken Starks at Reglue.org when I can’t upgrade Windows 10 on it anymore. Even with this glitch, by pushing the “Any Key” after each reboot during the Windows 10 install process, I got this machine upgraded to Build 21286. For the time being, I’ll just keep on keeping on until I have to do something else. Stay tuned!

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MS Docs Names Windows 10 Upgrade Four Phases

OK, then. I just struck a small lode while mining for Windows 10 gold. I found it in a Windows 10 Docs item named “Troubleshooting upgrade errors.” Therein, MS Docs names Windows 10 upgrade four phases. This document describes four phases during the upgrade process, and provides pointed troubleshooting suggestions and identifies useful error codes wherever it can. Good stuff!

If MS Docs Names Windows 10 Upgrade Four Phases, What Are They?

In the afore-linked Docs item, the four phases of Windows 10 Upgrade are named as follows:

Downlevel phase

This occurs while the old OS is still running (hence the name). This is the phase that runs right up until the initial reboot, at which point the old OS is no longer running. During this phase MS downloads all the pieces and parts it needs to perform the upgrade, so it’s apt to label this as an initial set-up and preparation phase. Errors that occur at this phase are most likely related to file access or download issues encountered as setup.exe attempts to pull all the pieces onto the target PC.

SafeOS phase

At this point you see something like the screencap shown in the lead-in graphic for this story. Following the initial reboot, Windows PE boots from the install image supplied as part of the source files for the upgrade. Those files might come from Windows Update, or an ISO obtained (and mounted) from the Media Creation Tool, Visual Studio downloads, or any number of other reputable Windows 10 image sources (Heidoc.net, UUPdump.ml, and so forth). Errors that occur at this phase at most likely device driver related.

First boot phase

About 30% into the “Working on updates” (SafeOS) phase, Windows 10 will reboot again to load key drivers for graphics and networking adapters or circuitry. Here again, driver issues are the most common cause of problems. Microsoft wisely advises those who encounter problems during this phase “[d]isconnect all peripheral devices except for the mouse, keyboard and display.  Obtain and install updated device drivers, then retry the upgrade.”

Second boot phase

About 70% into the “Working on updates” phase, Windows 10 reboots one or more times as needed. Now it is running the new OS with its new drivers. When errors occur during this phase, they most commonly originate from anti-virus software or filter drivers. Key advice: “Disconnect all peripheral devices except for the mouse, keyboard, and display. Obtain and install updated device drivers, temporarily uninstall anti-virus software, then retry the upgrade.” This phase is sometimes called the OOBE boot phase, during which final settings are applied.

Those who make it through all four phases complete their successful upgrade when they go through (or bypass) the “Out-of-box” phase (“Hi! We’ve got some updates for your PC. This might take several minutes.”)

Here’s a helpful diagram of the process that MS provides in the afore-linked Docs file:

[Click image for full-sized view. Much more readable!]

Notice it provides ample technical details about what’s going on in each phase. IMO, this is the most informative element in the whole document. Definitely worth reading right away (and returning to when handling upgrade or clean install issues). Enjoy!

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MS Publishes CloudPC Details Amidst Microsoft Graph Docs

Finally, there’s some substance to back up the long-swirling rumors about Microsoft’s upcoming CloudPC offering. We know it will be an Azure-supplied virtual Windows 10 instance, ready for Internet based use on a variety of endpoint devices, including smartphones. Just before Christmas, MS publishes CloudPC details amidst Microsoft Graph docs, as shown in the lead-in graphic above. The document is a changelog for Microsoft Graph released on 12/21/2020. Happily, it includes a surprising amount of detail.

Details from MS Publishes CloudPC Details amidst Microsoft Graph Docs

A quick look at the section depicted above shows that readers can drill down into all kinds of interesting details. Take, for example, the virtualEndpoint resource type. Readers will find a fascinating collection of methods and relationships.  Among many other entries, here are some scintillating samples:

virtualEndpoint Method Info
Method Return Type Description
 List cloudPCs  cloudPC collection  List properties and relationships of the cloudPC objects.
 List deviceImages  cloudPcDeviceImage collection  List the properties and relationships of cloudPcDeviceImage objects.
 Create cloudPcProvisioningPolicy  cloudPcProvisioningPolicy  Create a new cloudPcProvisioningPolicy object.
List provisioningPolicies  cloudPcProvisioningPolicy collection  List properties and relationships of the cloudPcProvisioningPolicy objects.

What this tells me is that MS has taken CloudPC pretty far down the implementation path. In fact, it shows evidence of long-standing design, time, effort and use. I’m hoping this means wider access to CloudPC will be part of the big picture soon, especially for Windows Insiders.

I’ve raised questions about this within the Windows Insider MVP community, but as yet have no official responses to report. Given that MS is showing more of its hand now, I have to guess that additional early adopters/beta testers/Insiders may be invited to participate. Hopefully, that will happen sometime soon. Personally, I’m itching to get a crack at this interesting and possibly game-changing new technology.

What Do Other Sources Say?

In a WindowsLatest story dated January 3, Mayank Parmar claims that “There’ll be at least three different configurations for Cloud PC – Medium (general-purpose computing), Heavy (better performance) and Advanced (business customers).” Good to know! And it will be interesting to understand their resources. That is, how many cores, how much RAM, and what levels of storage come with each configuration. Likewise, experiencing CloudPC on a smartphone should be highly educational. Moreover, it should help set expectations for CloudPC’s performance and capability. Right now, we still in limbo waiting for CloudPC to show up.

No doubt, there’ll be more cool and interesting stuff to learn and understand when increased access to CloudPC is enabled. I can’t wait! Alas, there’s really no telling exactly when CloudPC might go more public. That said, count on me to keep you informed. For my own part, I plan to be as early among the early adopters as possible. When the time comes, I plan to dig in deeply and enthusiastically.

According to Parmar Windows 10 Cloud PC should “drop sometime between March and June 2021.” Further, he reports that users can access CloudPC using the Microsoft Remote Desktop app. Given that this app runs on Windows, Android and iOS it’s the gateway to the most mobile of platforms. Even more suggestively, he shows a screenshot with a couple of CloudPC instances. Each has 2 virtual CPUs, 4 GB RAM and a 96 GB virtual SSD. My best guess is that this is the “Medium” config for a CloudPC instance. Hope we find out soon!

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Adobe Flash EOL December 31 2020

Here it comes! With the end of 2020, Adobe Flash will also hit end-of-life (EOL). If you can find a webpage that still uses Flash, and you have the Adobe Flash Player installed on some PC, you’ll get the warning message shown in this story’s lead-in graphic. I couldn’t find one on the only machine I’ve got that still has Flash Player installed. It’s stiil present on my 2014-vintage Surface Pro 3 (SP3).

If Adobe Flash EOL December 31 2020, How Else To Remove?

Glad you asked. Because I couldn’t find Flash content to provoke the warning (and uninstall button) on my SP3, I turned to other means. The Microsoft Update Catalog offers a plethora of KB4577586 versions for all supported Windows 10 releases. The name of this item starts with “Update for Removal of Adobe Flash Player…” and then goes onto specify various Windows versions, Server and desktop, to which it applies. Note: for all versions 1903 and later, grab the one labeled Update for Removal of Adobe Flash Player for Windows 10 Version 1903 for x64-based systems (or x86 or ARM as circumstances dictate).

For my x64 SP3, this appeared as a file named
windows10.0-kb4577586-x64_ec16e118cd8b99df185402c7a0c65a31e031a6f0.msu
in my Downloads folder. As an MSU file, it works with the Microsoft Update Standalone Installer utility. And, to my surprise, running the update produces this error message:

Surprise: unless some installed browser has Flash Player installed, the update won't run.
Surprise: unless some installed browser has Flash Player installed, the update won’t run.

Turns out the SP3 has only Edge and Chrome installed, so no Flash Player is present in any browser to be removed. But the machine still has Flash Player on the C: drive, so I’d like to make it go away. Fortunately, Adobe might offer a tool for that very job. Let’s see.

Flash Player Uninstaller to the Rescue?

When it comes to getting rid of programs, uninstallers are the tools of choice. Adobe has one for Windows, so I downloaded same to give it a try. It gets off to a promising looking start:

 

Upon completion it reports Done, and advises me to restart the system. OK, I can do that.

After the restart I run the uninstaller but it doesn’t tell me anything new. That said, the Flash Player 32-bit control remains present in Control Panel, so it didn’t impact that item (more on this below). That said, the preceding download page also has manual uninstall instructions, so I follow them to remove the contents of the following folders:


C:\Windows\system32\Macromed\Flash
C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Macromed\Flash
%appdata%\Adobe\Flash Player
%appdata%\Macromedia\Flash Player

Some of these folders belong to TrustedInstaller, so I end up booting into recovery mode and manually deleting the files from the command prompt.  That takes care of the Flash Player itself.

One More Thing: Turning Off The Control Panel Element

The cpl file that brings up the Flash Player Settings Manager remains present unless you do one more thing. It’s invoked through the file that normally resides at:

C:\WINDOWS\SysWOW64\FlashPlayerCPLApp.cpl

As outlined in this Adobe Support Community item, this is an artifact of the NPAPI or PPAPI versions of Flash Player that works with Firefox or Edge, respectively. If you simply rename this file with a different extension, it won’t load into Control Panel anymore. I imagine I could also delete it offline, as I did with the other files in the preceding folders, but that’s enough for today. It’s sufficiently gone for me!

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TLS Cipher Suites Doc Quietly Confirms 21H1 Release Coming Soon

What’s in a DOCs file title? More than a name in this case. On December 17, a DOCs item with the title TLS Cipher Suites in Windows 10 v21H1 appeared online. This TLS Cipher Suites Doc quietly confirms 21H1 release coming soon for Windows 10. This is necessary for the OS to meet US Government Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) compliance requirements.

What TLS Cipher Suites Doc Quietly Confirms 21H1 Release Coming Soon Really Means

Long prior history confirms that MS doesn’t publish DOCs items about upcoming releases until they’re less than 30-45 days out. It’s intended to give readers sufficient advance warning to let them know something is coming, so they can start testing in Insider Preview versions of upcoming builds (from the Insider Preview program’s Beta Channel in this case, currently at Build 19042.685).

The rumor mill has already been speculating that 21H1 might make its debut as early as January 2021. This Microsoft Publication more or less confirms this guess, and puts the potential date range for such a release from January 16 through January 31, 2021. Of course, any number of things could happen that might cause this date to slip further out in 2021. But at the moment this make sometime in the second half of January a reasonable projection.

We’ll just have to wait and see how things turn out. Given that this is considered a “minor” release I would also guess further than MS will simply release an enablement package to take PCs from 20H2 to 21H1 quickly and with no need for a Windows.old to roll back to.

Hello 2021, Goodbye 2020

This could get 2021 off to an interesting start as far as Windows 10 is concerned. Stay tuned, and we’ll all find out together.

Also: my best wishes for happy holidays to those who celebrate them. I’ll be posting more irregularly in the period starting tomorrow through New Year’s day. One thing’s for sure: we’ll all be glad to get shut of 2020, a year like no other in recent experience.

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21277 Puzzler Causes Head Scratching Befuddlement

I’m just a little dazed and confused. The most “out there” of all the Windows 10 releases — namely, Build 21277.1000 — still shows up in Settings → System → About and in Winver.exe as Version 2004. Given, as I understand it, that 2004 and 20H2 share the same code base, why isn’t the latest Dev Channel release showing the latest Windows 10 version? I can’t think of a good answer. I will observe that the release families RS_RELEASE (to which 21277 belongs) and FE_RELEASE (to which 20279 belongs) both predate the 20H2 release date. But because all share a common code base this 2004 label as a 21277 puzzler causes head scratching befuddlement. You can see the 2004 version number in the graphic below (click on that image to see it full-size if you can’t read the fine print).

21277 Puzzler Causes Head Scratching Befuddlement: 2004 or 21H2?
21277 Puzzler Causes Head Scratching Befuddlement: 2004 or 21H2? [Click image for full-sized view.]

If 21277 Puzzler Causes Head Scratching Befuddlement, What Next?

Good question. The rumor mill is asserting that 21H1 is nearing completion. See for example this WindowsLatest story Windows 10 Build 19043 (21H1) feature update will begin rolling out soon. If Build 19043 is heading for a 21H1 label, why is 21277 still carrying the 2004 label that will soon be one year behind its supposed predecessor.

Alas I wish I could say this version labeling scheme made sense. But MS tends to keep mostly mum on version labels, especially for Insider Preview releases. Thus, the 21277 Announcement says nothing about versioning at all. Ditto for the 20279 Announcement, itself another track for the Dev Channel that’s also ahead of 19043.

Io Saturnalia, Confusion Is King!

All we can do is take the Insider Preview releases as they come, along with whatever nomenclature MS decides to use when labeling them. But from time to time, I have to step back and wonder out loud about what’s really going on.

Personally, I’d prefer something like “Version IP-RS” (for Insider Preview RS_Release family) for the 21277 release rather than “Version 2004.” Ditto for IP-FE and “Version 2004” for 20279. Kind of makes me think they could just drop the version numbering altogether for Insider Preview releases and stick solely to the Build number. That’s what matters most anyway. Just a thought…

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