Microsoft has given the next version of Windows 10 a name. 19H2 will now be known as the November 2019 Update and is due to land any day now.
Build 18363.418 is, as far as Microsoft is concerned, the final version ahead of release, although the company will continue to emit updates as part of its "normal servicing cadence".
The gang also took the opportunity to make it clear how things were going to work. The November 2019 Update (19H2) shares the same servicing content as the May 2019 Update (19H1) with the build revision number (the .418) remaining the same. It's just the build number that reflects the different updates, with 18362 being May and 18363 being November.
Moving from May to November (for customers offered the option) will simply see Windows Update downloading what Microsoft calls an "enablement package" to switch on the 19H2 goodies, such as they are.
Doing so will simply switch that 18362 build to 18363.
More importantly, for Windows Insiders at least, is the fact that this represents a chance to shift from the Slow Ring to the Release Preview Ring while both are in sync. The Slow Ring will start getting 20H1 builds in the next few weeks and the chance to stay in the warm embrace of 19H2 without a reinstall will be gone.
While it might all seem like a return to normality – Fast Ring getting quick-fire 20H1 builds, Slow Ring getting the more stable versions – the gang couldn't resist throwing in a little bit of confusion, warning: "If you move from the Slow ring to the Release Preview ring today and are on Build 18362.100xx you will NOT be offered Build 18363.418 yet."
It should all be sorted out "in the coming weeks".
With 19H2 (or the November 2019 Update or 1909 or whatever-they're-calling-it-today) being delivered as little more than a jumped-up cumulative update, the whole process should be a good deal more painless than the biannual feature updates delivered up until now. The next update, 20H1, will be a tad chunkier and is expected to drop in the first half of 2020.
Microsoft has remained tight-lipped on whether the approach for 19H2 will be the norm going forwards – a major update in the Spring followed by a smaller update in the Autumn.
Windows users weary from two batterings per year would certainly welcome a less frenetic approach. ®