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The next big Windows 10 update is finally here, but it already has issues

Windows 10
(Image credit: Shutterstock / tanuha2001)

The latest Windows 10 feature update - also known as the October 2020 update and Version 20H2 - has begun to roll out for some users running version 1903 or later.

Windows 10 feature updates are released on a biannual basis, in the spring and autumn, and introduce new and enhanced functionality to the operating system. They are distinct from the regular “quality updates” put out by Microsoft, which usually address security-related issues.

In this instance, the latest feature update includes a new theme-aware Start menu, more robust Alt + Tab functionality and wider improvements to the user interface.

The update is also the first to make Edge Chromium the default web browser on Windows 10, overwriting the now defunct HTML-based Edge Legacy automatically. The new browser is now integrated directly into the operating system itself and therefore cannot be uninstalled via traditional methods.

Windows 10 update issues

However, while users will likely welcome the arrival of the new Windows 10 features, Microsoft has already identified issues with the October 2020 update that could hamper the experience of some users.

According to Microsoft documentation, the firm is still investigating old incompatibility issues with certain drivers associated with Conexant and Synaptics audio devices.

“Windows 10 devices with affected Conexant or Synaptics audio drives might receive a stop error with a blue screen during or after updating to Windows 10 version 2004,” explains the report.

Another rather vague entry describes potential issues for users of Microsoft IME for Japanese and Chinese languages, who “might experience issues when attempting various tasks”.

Finally, the firm identified a new bug that generated error messages when users attempted to install third-party drives, but this particular issue has now been resolved.

How to download Windows 10 October 2020 update

As with previous updates, Microsoft is throttling the availability of the October 2020 update to “ensure a reliable download experience”. This means not all users will be able to download the update immediately.

To check whether the update is available for your device, follow these steps set out in a new Microsoft blog post:

  • Navigate to Settings
  • Select Update & Security, then Windows Update
  • Click Check for updates
  • If the update appears, download and install as usual