What is Windows 10 22h2? The latest version of Windows 10 will be the last, with no new feature updates coming to the operating system.
The most recent 22H2 release — which rolled out in October 2022 — will be the “final version” of Windows 10, said Jason Leznek, Microsoft principal product manager for Windows, in a blog post Thursday. Microsoft will continue to support all editions of Windows 10 with monthly security updates as planned until its end of life date Oct. 14, 2025, with Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) releases receiving support beyond that date.
Windows 10 remains popular with users, still accounting for 73% of Windows desktop devices globally, according to StatCounter GlobalStats. That compares with 21% for Windows 11, which arrived in late 2021.
What is Windows 10 22h2?
Windows 10 version 22H2 is the latest OS update for Windows 10 customers, which began rolling out in October 2022. Just like Windows 10 version 21H2, which was released in 2021, version 22H2 for Windows 10 is a very minor release which focuses on a scoped set of under the hood improvements most beneficial to Microsoft’s enterprise customers.
Now that Windows 11 is on the market, Microsoft is focused on bringing new features to that OS instead, meaning Windows 10 is pretty much in maintenance mode at this point. Although it continues to get new version releases every year, no new consumer-facing OS features are expected to ship on Windows 10 going forward.
Windows 11 also got its big version 22H2 update in September 2023. Here’s everything you need to know about that release.
Just like the last handful of Windows 10 feature updates, version 22H2 is shipping as a servicing style release, meaning it doesn’t require a full OS download and is overall much less risky to install. The update is much smaller in size, and the installation process should only take a couple of minutes.
Microsoft has also released an ISO for Windows 10 version 22H2, which can be downloaded from the Windows 10 download page. The ISO includes build 19045.
More about Windows LTSC releases
As Microsoft shared in a separate advisory published on Thursday, LTSC releases will continue to receive updates beyond October 2025 according to their specific lifecycles.
For instance, Windows 10 LTSC editions will reach the end of mainstream support in January 2027, with the only exception being the IoT Enterprise edition which will be supported until January 2032.
Microsoft also announced what Windows LTSC releases will be released during the second half of 2024: Windows 11 Enterprise LTSC and Windows 11 IoT Enterprise LTSC.
“If you’re waiting for a Windows 11 LTSC release, you can begin planning and testing your applications and hardware on the current GA channel release, Windows 11, version 22H2,” Leznek added.
“Check out App confidence: Optimize app validation with Test Base for more tips on how to test your applications.”
Windows 10 Is Being Phased Out. Here’s What That Means for You
If you haven’t already upgraded to Windows 11, now is a great time to do so because Microsoft is finished with major updates to Windows 10.
Windows 10 version 22H2 is the current and final version of the operating system, though Microsoft said it will continue to release monthly security updates for all Windows 10 editions until it reaches end of support on Oct. 14, 2025.
Existing long-term servicing channel, or LTSC, releases will still receive updates beyond that end-of-support date, the company said.
What does this mean for you? With no new Windows 10 feature updates coming, Microsoft is recommending you transition to Windows 11. You can still use Windows 10 after the end-of-support date, but without security updates after that time, your PC will become more vulnerable to various security risks.
Microsoft began rolling out Windows 11 — the tech giant’s latest operating system — in October 2021, and deployed it to all eligible devices in May 2022. The company introduced new design elements and added a handful of new features and productivity tools with Windows 11, all of which are available on the best Windows laptops.
Microsoft starts rolling out the annual Windows 10 feature update, Windows 10 22H2
One month after starting to roll out the annual feature update for Windows 11, Microsoft is doing the same for Windows 10. On October 18, Microsoft announced that Windows 10 22H2 — the one and only “feature update” for Windows 10 this year — is available to those who manually download it.
The ISOs for Windows 10 22H2 (Build 19045.2006) are available today. Version 22H2 also is now available through Windows Server Update Services (including Configuration Manager), Windows Update for Business and the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC). The support countdown clock for 22H2 begins today, with Home and Pro users getting 18 months of support for Windows 10 22H2 and Enterprise and Education getting 30 months.
Update: As expected, Microsoft also made available today, as part of its optional/non-security updates (for “Week C”) the promised missing features of Windows 11 22H2 Users can check out the tabbed file explorer, suggested actions, taskbar overflow and other Windows 11 22H2 supplemental features today. These will go out to mainstream users on the next Patch Tuesday, November 8.
Microsoft officials have been quiet about the feature list for Windows 10 22H2, other than to say it would be available as a “scoped set of features.” This is Microsoft’s way of saying a feature update is small enough to be delivered via an enablement package that activates the new features, which will make the update process fast and easy for those already running the previous release (Windows 10 21H2, in this case). Windows 11 22H2, in spite of its fairly small number of new features, was not delivered via an enablement package.
Why Microsoft Is Forcing the Upgrade
Why has Microsoft chosen Windows 10 22H2, you ask? This is because 22H2 is the last version of Windows 10. Microsoft will automatically upgrade all versions of Windows 10 to Windows 10 22H2 because older versions of the OS, including Windows 10 21H2, will reach the end of support on June 13, 2023. In other words, Windows 10 21H2 and older will not get any monthly updates critical to the security and the overall system health of PCs beyond the end of the support date.
By upgrading the older version of Windows 10 to 22H2, Microsoft will ensure that users continue to get monthly security updates. Those monthly updates will help you stay updated with the latest security patches, thus making your PCs more secure. After upgrading to 22H2, you will continue to get monthly security updates until 2025, when the operating system will reach the end of support.
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