Windows 11 users herded toward 23H2 via automatic upgrade

Machine learning to smooth bumps in the update road

Windows 11 users still clinging to the past are to be dragged into a bright, 23H2-shaped future by Microsoft, whether they want to or not.

Microsoft has added a notification to its Release Health dashboard warning Windows 11 users that it is time for the beatings automatic upgrades to begin. "We are starting to update eligible Windows 11 devices automatically to version 23H2."

As for what eligible means, according to Microsoft, this is "Windows 11 devices that have reached or are approaching end of servicing." Support for Windows 11 21H2 came to an end last year on October 10, 2023, and version 22H2 is due to end on October 8, 2024. Win 11 23H2 itself will endure until November 11, 2025, or just after the plug gets pulled on Windows 10.

The update comes shortly after Microsoft quashed the last of its compatibility holds in Windows 11 23H2, which affected customers attempting to use the Co-pilot preview with multiple monitors. Icons tended to move unexpectedly between monitors.

The automatic upgrade rollout will occur in phases and, according to Microsoft, "follows the machine learning-based (ML) training we have utilized so far."

"We will continue to train our intelligent ML model to safely roll out this new Windows version in phases to deliver a smooth update experience."

So, if it all goes wrong, users can blame AI.

There is some logic in getting all users upgraded and off unsupported versions of Windows. Eligible Home or Pro users who opted to "Get the latest updates as soon as they're available" in Windows Update will likely already be enjoying the delights of Windows 23H2.

However, there are also good reasons why a user might want to stick with an older version. Issues with patches and updates are very much par for the course, and a customer would be forgiven for sticking with what they know works. That said, doing so means an eventual end to security fixes.

Hence, Windows 11 23H2 has now entered a new rollout phase. One where eligible devices will be automatically updated based on Microsoft's "intelligent ML model." ®

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