Windows 10

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Windows 10
Part of the Microsoft Windows family
Windows 10 Logo.svg Windows10abstract.png
RTM release(v10.0.19042.782) (January 15, 2021; 9 months ago (2021-01-15))[source?]
Kernel typeHybrid
Update methodWindows Update, Windows Store, Windows Server Update Services
Platform supportIA-32, x64, ARMv7
Preceded byWindows 8.1 (2013)
Succeeded byWindows 11 (2021)

Windows 10 is a computer operating system by Microsoft as part of its Microsoft Windows family of operating systems. It was known as Threshold when it was being developed and announced at a press event on 30 September 2014. It came out for PCs on 29 July 2015. Beginning on that day, Windows 10 was available as a free upgrade for users running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 for one year.

Windows 10 is designed to provide a common, "universal" user interface for various systems. These include desktop, laptop, and all-in-one PCs, tablet computers, smartphones, and embedded systems such as the Xbox game console. This allows Microsoft to integrate each type of platform with greater ease.

Unlike earlier versions of Windows, Windows 10 is regularly updated with new features based on user feedback, including before it was first released. Microsoft releases updates every half a year, an example of the software as a service principle. Each release has a four-digit build number (a type of version number), the first two digits referring to the year of release, and the other two digits referring to the month of release (e.g. "1903" refers to a build released in March 2019).

New or returned features[change | change source]

Feature Present in Windows 8.1 Present in Windows 7 Remarks/Improvements
Return of the Start Menu No Yes It is a mix of Windows 8's Start Screen with Live Tiles and Windows 7. Basically, combines both into one. This was done due to criticism of Windows 8's removal of the Start Menu.
Multiple desktops No No This feature allows users to 'create' multiple desktops in Windows. This feature was first available for Ubuntu and OS X.
Tablet Mode Partial No Used on multi-mode (convertible) devices like Microsoft's Surface Pro 3. When a user detaches the keyboard, it changes into a touch-friendly mode and the reverse happens when it is reattached.
Cortana No No A personal digital voice assistance that was first released on Windows Phone 8.1.
DirectX 12 ver 11 ver 11 DirectX updated to version 12. Allows games to run faster in some cases.

Milestones[change | change source]

  • 30 September 2014 – Windows 10 was officially announced.

2015[change | change source]

  • 21 January – Microsoft announced that most of the devices currently running at least Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1 Update will get a free upgrade to Windows 10 if it is done within the first year.
  • 2 February – Microsoft announced a free version of Windows 10 for Raspberry Pi 2.
  • 2 April – New Office 2016 for Touch preview launched for Windows 10.
  • 18 March – The 5th official update to Windows 10 (Build 10041) since the first was introduced.
  • 30 March – The 6th official update to Windows 10 (Build 10049) was introduced.
  • 15 July - Released to manufacturing (Build 10240)
  • 29 July - General availability (Version 1507)
  • 12 November - November 2015 Update (Threshold 1, Version 1511, Build 10586)

2016[change | change source]

  • 2 August - Anniversary Update (Redstone 1, Version 1607, Build 14393)

2017[change | change source]

  • 5 April - Creators Update (Redstone 2, Version 1703, Build 15063)
  • 17 October - Fall Creators Update (Redstone 3, Version 1709, Build 16299)

2018[change | change source]

  • 30 April - April 2018 Update (Redstone 4, Version 1803)
  • 13 November - October 2018 Update (Redstone 5, Version 1809)

2019[change | change source]

  • 21 May - May 2019 Update (19H1, Version 1903)
  • 12 November - November 2019 Update (19H2, Version 1909)

2020[change | change source]

  • 27 May - May 2020 Update (20H1, Version 2004)
  • 19 October - October 2020 Update (20H2, Build 19042)

Versions[change | change source]

Windows 10 has many versions for different uses, that have different features.[1]

  • Windows 10 Home is meant for home use. It can be used on desktop, laptop, tablet, and 2-in-1 (mix of tablet and laptop) computers.
  • Windows 10 Pro is meant more for businesses. It adds features on top of Windows 10 Home and is meant for advanced users.
  • Windows 10 Pro for Workstations is similar to Windows 10 Pro but is meant for workstation use. It allows more Central processing units to be used at a time.
  • Windows 10 Enterprise is meant for use in IT. It adds features on top of Windows 10 Pro.
  • Windows 10 Education is meant for use in schools, colleges and universities. It is the same as Windows 10 Enterprise, but it doesn't include Cortana.
  • Windows 10 Mobile, which has now been discontinued, was meant for mobile devices.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Which Windows Version is Right For You? (pdf)" (PDF). 30 January 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 December 2017. Retrieved 3 September 2017.