The second big update to Windows 10 has landed. Going by the name of Creators Update, this free refresh of the operating system brings with it a whole range of new features.
Just like the previous release, the Anniversary Update, this major new update continues to develop, improve and evolve the OS. In fact, this is now the goal for Microsoft — making Windows 10 better with each new update, and offering a more complete and cohesive user experience, one that is more secure and optimized than the releases before it. Gone are the days of minor update, while waiting for the next version number.
The biggest advantage of this strategy of two large updates each year for the OS, however, is that Microsoft can add new features to Windows 10, while refining and polishing the additions that are already there.
Indeed, the Windows 10 Creators Update is the best version of the OS to date — as it should be.
Let’s take a look at what’s new in this update, how and where you can grab it, some pointers on how to install it on your PC, along with a few basic instructions on certain problems that you could encounter as you upgrade your devices to this newest version of Windows 10.
Microsoft now considers Windows 10 to be a service. In other words, the OS is continually updated with new features and fixes in small increments and big releases. The regular monthly security fixes, app updates, and feature refreshes make up the former.
The Creators Update, then, is the latest big one.
It started rolling out for Windows 10 users for free on April 11, though people signed up for the Windows Insider Program had access to the final bits a couple of weeks earlier. The software giant calls this version 1703, with the numbers 17 denoting the year, and 03, the month of March, when this major update for Windows 10 was finalized.
Aside from the name Creators Update, version 1703 is what most technical documents will refer to this iteration of Windows 10 as.
You may also see it called Redstone 2. This is the codename of this line of updates the Redmond based company is working on. The first Redstone releasing being the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, which made its way out a year after the initial release of the operating system.
The software titan is currently working on Redstone 3, scheduled for launch by the end of the year. It is sure to build upon the features introduced in the Creators Update, while also bringing to the table a range of new options, as usual.
As the name gives away, many of the included features in this version have been designed to boost the creativity of users.
The most notable of the bunch being improved support for 3D across the operating system, along with the new Paint 3D app.
The Creators Update is also packed with an impressive array of other new options in almost all areas that, while not targeting creativity, should still come in useful for users, and help them be more productive.
Below is a very quick rundown of the new additions, the briefest of introductions, so to say.
If you’re sold on what the Creators Update offers, and ready to take the dive, then you have a number of ways you can install this new version of the OS. Before you get down to business, you will have to decide whether you want to upgrade your current Windows 10 installation, or start from scratch and go in with a clean install.
Most people choose to upgrade, particularly now that Microsoft has really streamlined the upgrade process. The company even has a dedicated page set up for upgrading to the Windows 10 Creators Update, complete with an ‘Update now’ button that lets users initiate the installation.
Of course, the company is also automatically upgrading all compatible devices to this new version. The Creators Update was made available for manually installing on April 5, and Microsoft followed it with the official rollout on April 11. The process is expected to take several months to complete, as this new version of Windows 10 will be offered to all compatible devices running the OS.
And while you will receive a notification in due time, if you have not yet, you can obviously also go to the Windows Update section of your Settings panel, and check whether the Creators Update is available for your device.
But while beginners will find these upgrade methods useful, more experienced users will want to manually install this new version by clearing things up on their system, backing up their data, document and personal files, and setting up an installation media.
This is usually a USB flash drive loaded with the ISO file downloaded directly from Microsoft servers. The software titan maintains a section on its official website where it houses all the latest versions of Windows 10, like Home, Pro and Enterprise, as well as the various regional and language variants.
The build number you are looking for is build 15063, which is the one for the Creators Update.
ISO files for both 32-bit and 64-bit variants of the Creators Update can easily be downloaded from here, and you can activate your copy of the operating system once it is installed. A tool like Rufus comes in really handy here, and this free software can easily set up a bootable USB drive for you in just a few clicks. It also comes with full support for all versions of Windows.
Ultimately, even with all these options for users to install the Creators Update, Microsoft is not rushing in and making this version available to all from the get go. It has rolled out this new version in phases, targeting newer devices first, especially those that is has tested together with OEM partners.
At the same time, it continues to gather feedback from customers.
And this is why the company is making sure that the Creators Update is only made available to systems where it can ensure 100% that the device will not encounter any problems after installation. That is the reason why Microsoft has gone in with a staged rollout.
That’s not to say that it’s all smooth sailing, as there have been a few reports of bugs here and there.
At the end of the day, Windows 10 Creators Update is simply a software. And just like most software, users can encounter bugs and issues when running it. While Microsoft has very thoroughly tested the Creators Update, and tens of millions of Insiders have helped the company optimize it, there have been some reports of problems and installation issues.
The most common ones are those related to compatibility — either hardware or software. For example, users of some security programs like Comodo Antivirus have report severe graphical issues after upgrading to the Creators Update. These can mostly be fixed by removing the antivirus completely and reinstalling it.
Other times drivers or hardware problems can wreak havoc on PCs. Mostly users running old peripherals and outdated devices like scanners and printers experience these problems. But then again, this has been the case with almost every Windows release ever.
There are, however, little bugs and errors scattered across the OS, which Microsoft continues to fix with each monthly update. As an example, one widely reported oversight was how the Action Center icon in the taskbar showed a yellow notification icon when the screen was set to full brightness. It disappeared when turning it down. But this is more of an annoyance than a severe critical issue, of course.
The easiest way to prevent any hardware or software issues is by manually deploy it, by creating a USB flash drive for installation. The upgrade process then bypasses any checks that can cause critical problems, and you end up with a fresh, clean, installation of Windows 10.
At the end of the day, Windows 10 Creators Update is just like any other major update for the operating system. Secure and stable, rich with new features and improvements to old ones, and offering a streamlined installation and upgrade experience for users. At this point in time, if you’re already running Windows 10, then there is no real reason to delay the deployment of the Creators Update, provided all your devices are compatible with it.