The next major feature update to Windows 10 will begin rolling out from October 17.
Microsoft confirmed the general release date for the Fall Creators Update at the IFA trade show in Germany.
The update will arrive slightly later than expected, with the firm announcing earlier this year it would aim to deliver two features updates to Windows on PCs and servers each year, around March and September.
The update will be rolled out over a number of months, as Microsoft upgrades Windows 10 machines in phases.
The Fall Creators Update will introduce a series of features to PC. Those who regularly swap between between a PC and mobile device should benefit from the ability to pick up using the app or editing a file where they left off. Another change will bring a very popular feature back to Microsoft's OneDrive cloud storage, with Files on Demand letting users see all their files on OneDrive, whether those files are stored on the device or not.
Batteries on newer laptops and tablets should also last longer when running Windows 10, due to the new Power Throttling feature. Finally, Windows 10 is also getting a new look, courtesy of Microsoft's new Fluent Design System, which will add light, depth, motion, and the quality of physical materials to Windows UI, as well as to its apps. Inputs will also change, with support for eye-tracking and the ability to more widely and more easily use digital pens.
Microsoft hasn't forgotten about business users with the Fall Creators Update, and will improve how it handles threat detection and response for Windows 10 Enterprise and Windows Server users.
Most enhancements will be to Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) — Microsoft's threat detection and protection service that is part of Windows 10 Enterprise, and which will bundle together Defender Application Guard (WDAG), Windows Defender Device Guard, and Windows Defender Antivirus.
An extended version of Microsoft's Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit will be built into the Windows 10 core and called Windows Defender Exploit Guard. Exploit Guard will spot and neutralize potential threats and intrusions, including zero days, using intelligence from the Microsoft Intelligent Security Graph. Windows Defender Antivirus will also begin pulling information from analysis of the billions of data points available via Microsoft's Intelligent Security Graph, to better identify threats and improve protection.
"With the Fall Creators Update, Windows Defender is smarter and defends better than ever before, with behind the scenes cloud intelligence that enables these new defences against ransomware and exploits," said Terry Myerson, executive VP for the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft, in his IFA keynote.
Admins will be able to more easily manage these features using Intune and System Center Configuration Manager, according to Microsoft, with these orchestration tools will also be updated to make it easier for companies to audit the security configuration and patch status of devices across their IT estate.
The Fall Creators Update will also coincide with the launch of Windows 10 Pro for Workstations and Windows 'Mixed Reality' headsets—basically virtual reality headsets—from Asus, Acer, Dell, HP and Lenovo, which start selling from $299.
Read more on Windows 10...
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- 20 big changes coming to Windows 10 in 2017
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- Windows 10: Microsoft promises updates will soon be smaller and easier to delay
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Nick Heath is chief reporter for TechRepublic. He writes about the technology that IT decision makers need to know about, and the latest happenings in the European tech scene.