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Haven't received the Windows 10 20H2 update yet? Your SSD may be to blame

SSD
(Image credit: Future)

The latest big Windows 10 update, also known as Windows 10 20H2, has been rolling out to users in increments for a number of weeks now, but it appears that one section of the user base will have to wait longer than most.

An SSD compatibility issue has forced Microsoft to temporarily withhold the Windows 10 feature update from certain users, the company has confirmed.

According to a support notice, Microsoft has placed a compatibility hold on Windows 10 devices that connect to NVMe SSDs via Thunderbolt port due to an issue with the stornvme.sys driver file. In practice, this means that affected machines will not be served the Windows 10 20H2 update until the problem is resolved.

When attempting to update, the users in question will encounter an alert that reads: “Your PC has hardware that isn’t ready for this version of Windows 10. Windows Update will automatically offer you this version of Windows 10 once the issue has been resolved.”

Windows 10 update issues

The latest Windows 10 feature update might not be particularly earth-shattering, but includes a few upgrades that users will no doubt want to get their hands on, including a new theme-aware Start menu, more robust Alt + Tab functionality and wider UI improvements.

The update is also the first to make Edge Chromium the default browser in Windows 10, overwriting the now defunct HTML-based version automatically. The new browser is integrated directly into the operating system, which delivers potential performance gains, but also means it cannot be uninstalled via traditional methods.

It will be a source of frustration, then, that users of Thunderbolt NVMe SSDs are unable to access the latest pool of Windows 10 features.

According to Microsoft, the delay is necessary to safeguard the Windows 10 update experience and to avoid errors that hamper the functionality of the OS. 

“On affected devices, when plugging in a Thunderbolt NVMe SSD you might receive a stop error with a blue screen and ‘DRIVER_VERIFIER_DMA_VIOLATION (e6) An illegal DMA operation was attempted by a driver being verified’,” wrote Microsoft.

“Affected Windows 10 devices will have at least one Thunderbolt port and any currently available version of the drive file stornvme.sys.”

The firm is working on a fix for the issue, which is expected to land in a future update, and has asked users not to attempt a manual upgrade in the interim.