What is new in the Windows 10 October 2020 Update version 20H2

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    What is new in the Windows 10 October 2020 Update version 20H2

    What is new in the Windows 10 October 2020 Update version 20H2

    Last Updated: 20 Oct 2020 at 13:43

    The Windows 10 October 2020 Update has started to become available to customers as a free update.

    This year has continued to bring about change for many of us. Change in how we connect to one another, how we work, how we learn, even how we have fun. And that change is starting to feel more permanent, especially with kids going back to school adapting to remote learning and connection with their teachers and classmates or workplaces shifting to hybrid environments. Throughout all of this, the PC has become the essential device to keep us connected across our lives; it’s become our office, our classroom, even our playground. As we all adapt, live and learn through this together, one constant that remains is our commitment to you, our customers. We know you are counting on us, on Windows to stay connected to what matters.

    As part of this commitment, we’re pleased to share the features and improvements coming with the Windows 10 October 2020 Update, many of which are requested features from you to help make your experience on Windows even better. Some of the new features include the fan favorite shortcut Alt + Tab which now lets you access your Microsoft Edge tabs, a streamlined design for the Start menu and more. If you’re interested in learning how to get the update you can visit this blog post to learn more.

    Here’s what’s new in the Windows 10 October 2020 Update

    Microsoft Edge

    With this update comes the latest and greatest version of the new Microsoft Edge. Since launching back in January, we’ve seen phenomenal growth and we’re excited it’s included in this update. If you haven’t yet tried the new Microsoft Edge, you should launch it and try it out since we’ve built a better browser with more performance, more privacy and more value back while you browse. If you’re already using our new browser, then you’ve seen first-hand how fast it is and we’re adding great new features every six weeks. Try out Collections to easily save and share content you find online. It’s perfect for holiday shopping, school research and even planning next spring’s camping trip. And it works across PC and mobile so you’re always in sync. We’ve also added Price Comparison so you can easily find the best price when you add an item to a collection, just in time for holiday shopping. In fact, we’re proud to say Microsoft Edge is the best browser for shopping this holiday.

    With this update you also get these new, exclusive to Windows 10 features for Microsoft Edge:

    • Alt + Tab = The quick way to access your apps and web tabs. With this handy keyboard shortcut not only can you easily access the apps you have open on your desktop, but now you can also access your open tabs in Microsoft Edge.
    • All the tabs you were looking for. If you’re someone who likes the convenience of pinning your favorite websites to the taskbar, you’re going to love this new feature. Now when you hover over the website icon, you’ll see all the open tabs of that site.

    Refreshing updates from the Start menu to the Taskbar and more

    • A refreshing Start. The Start menu has a more streamlined design. A uniform, partially transparent background to the tiles creates a beautiful stage for the redesigned app icons like Calculator, Mail and Calendar. This refined Start design looks great in both dark and light themes, but if you’re looking for a splash of color, first make sure to turn on Windows dark theme and then toggle “Show accent color on the following surfaces” for “Start, taskbar, and action center” under Settings > Personalization > Color to elegantly apply your accent color to the Start frame and tiles.
    • Smooth Settings. Settings continues to become a more robust place to access security and device details. Also, now when you go to Settings > System > Display, Advanced display settings, you can change the refresh rate of your display. A higher refresh rate allows for smoother motion of visuals, and depending on what kind of display or monitor you have, you may be able to really crank it up—makes for a great gaming experience.
    • 2 in 1 toast elimination. 2-in-1 devices now naturally switch by default to the new tablet experience without the notification toast asking you to switch into the tablet mode when you detach the keyboard, helping to keep you in your flow.
    • Noticeable notifications. New app logos at the top of notifications now make it much easier to identify who they are from. And the new “X marks the spot” lets you quickly click, close and get back at it.
    • A Taskbar tuned to your liking. Getting a new Windows PC? You will enjoy a cleaner, more personalized, out-of-box experience featuring a taskbar specifically curated for you—less clutter and more content that you’ll love. (This experience is limited to new account creation or first logon scenarios.)

    Updates for commercial and education customers

    In addition to a smoother user experience, commercial and education customers also get enhanced security and management. Feature updates include more granular control in Mobile Device Management (MDM)1, stronger sign-in protection with enhanced sign-in security, and virtualization-based security for both Microsoft Edge and Office. Whether people are working or learning onsite or remotely, IT pros and end users will gain a simpler, more secure experience with the latest Windows 10 Pro or Windows 10 Education.

    • Simpler device management. Mobile Device Management (MDM)1 now includes a Local Users and Groups policy that gives administrators the same options as on-premises Group Policy.
    • More secure biometric sign on. With enhanced sign-in security2, Windows Hello3 now offers added support for virtualization-based security for certain fingerprint and face sensors, which protects, isolates and secures a user’s biometric authentication data.
    • Stronger app protection. Windows Defender Application Guard (WDAG)4 now helps protect Microsoft 3655 as well as Microsoft Edge with a unique hardware isolation strategy. WDAG keeps enterprise data protected by opening sites and Office files from untrusted sources in a virtualized container.

    • Personalized tab page in the new Microsoft Edge. IT administrators can help employees, students and teachers personalize their new tab page with Microsoft 3655. Now, people can access their files and favorite Microsoft 365 apps more quickly just by opening a new tab in their browser. To learn more about what this update means for IT Pros, visit this blog post.

    We continue to believe that Windows is the most powerful, productive and secure place for each of us to do our best work, to have fun, learn and connect. We are excited to share the latest features coming as part of the Windows 10 October 2020 Update. We also want to say a big thank you to our community of Windows Insiders who have provided important feedback throughout the development process for this update.

    1 Requires Azure AD or Microsoft 365. Sold separately. Learn more about Mobile Device Management, https://docs.microsoft.com/windows/c...anagement/mdm/.
    2 Enhanced sign-in security requires specialized hardware and software components that can be leveraged starting on devices shipping with Windows 10 October 2020 Update configured out of factory. Documentation will be available later this year.
    3 For Windows Hello with biometrics specialized hardware, a fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor, or other biometric sensor is required. Hardware-based protection of the Windows Hello credential/keys requires TPM 1.2 or greater. If no TPM exists or is configured, credentials/keys protection will be software-based. Requires TPM 1.2 or greater for TPM based key protection.
    4 For Windows 10 Enterprise only.
    5 Requires Microsoft 365 E5 subscription; sold separately.

    Source: What’s new in the Windows 10 October 2020 Update | Windows Experience Blog

    See also: How to get the Windows 10 October 2020 Update version 2009

    Brink's Avatar Posted By: Brink
    20 Oct 2020

  1. Posts : 70,054
    64-bit Windows 11 Pro for Workstations

    What is new for IT pros in Windows 10, version 20H2

    Windows 10, version 20H2 is now available through Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) and Windows Update for Business, and can be downloaded today from Visual Studio Subscriptions, the Software Download Center (via Update Assistant or the Media Creation Tool), and the Volume Licensing Service Center[1]. Today also marks the start of the 30-month servicing timeline for this Semi-Annual Channel release.

    Just like we did for devices upgrading from Windows 10, version 1903 to version 1909, we will be delivering Windows 10, version 20H2 (also referred to as the Windows 10 October 2020 Update) to devices running Windows 10, version 2004 via the new streamlined fashion, which we call an enablement package.

    For those updating to Windows 10, version 20H2 from earlier versions of Windows, the process will be similar to previous updates.
    For those of you that are new to “enablement packages,” Windows 10, version 2004 and Windows 10, version 20H2 share a common core operating system with an identical set of system files. As a result, the new features in version 20H2 were included in the monthly quality updates for version 2004 released on September 8, 2020, but were delivered in a disabled/dormant state. These features remain dormant until they are turned on with the Windows 10, version 20H2 enablement package: a small, quick to install “switch” that activates these features. Using an enablement package, the update to Windows 10, version 20H2 should take approximately the same amount of time as it does to install monthly quality updates.

    Note: If you are running Windows 10, version 2004 and have not installed the September 8, 2020 updates, you will not see the version 20H2 enablement package offered to your device.

    With today's release, we recommend IT administrators begin targeted deployments of Windows 10, version 20H2 to validate that the apps, devices, and infrastructure used by their organizations work as expected with the new features. If you will be updating devices used in remote or hybrid work scenarios, I also recommend reading Deploying a new version of Windows 10 in a remote world. For insight into our broader rollout strategy, see John Cable's post on How to get the Windows 10 October 2020 Update.

    If your organization is currently running Enterprise or Education editions of Windows 10, version 2004, you have 18 months of servicing. By using the enablement package to upgrade your devices to version 20H2, you will receive 30 months of servicing. Devices running Home, Pro, Pro for Workstations, and Pro Education will receive the standard 18 months of servicing. For more information, see the Windows lifecycle FAQ.

    New features

    As you begin to roll out Windows 10, version 20H2 to your organization, here are some of the new features and enhancements that will allow you to benefit from intelligent security, simplified updates, flexible management, and enhanced productivity.

    For the end user

    • Theme-aware tiles in Start – The redesigned Start menu has a more streamlined design that removes the solid color backplates behind the logos in the apps list, and applies a uniform, partially transparent background to the tiles. This design creates a beautiful stage for your icons, especially the Fluent Design icons for Office and Microsoft Edge, as well as the redesigned icons for built-in apps like Calculator, Mail, and Calendar.
    • ALT+TAB between tabs in Microsoft Edge – We introduced ALT+TAB (task switcher) allowing you to toggle between open windows way back in Windows 2.0! In Windows 10, version 20H2, you can now use ALT+TAB to rotate between not only your open apps but also the tabs in Microsoft Edge. Now rotating through ALT+TAB will allow you to open Microsoft Edge in the specific tab you're needing, not just the latest active tab. You can modify the ALT+TAB experience in Settings > System > Multitask.
    • Improved notifications – Toast notifications now have the app's logo in the top left corner of the notification, so you can immediately see where the notification is coming from. We've also turned off the Focus Assist notifications, which tells you when Focus Assist is enabled – whether via automatic rule or manually enabling it.
    • Settings – We continue to improve the Settings page, adding more and more classic Control Panel capabilities. In addition to added settings, we also added a [COPY] button to Settings > System > About so you can easily copy that information and paste it into a help desk ticket. Watch for even more improvements to come!
    • Tablet experience – Previously, when you detach a keyboard on a 2-in-1 device, a toast notification would appear asking if you wanted to switch into Tablet Mode. If you tapped Yes, you would switch into Tablet Mode. But selecting No would bring you the Windows desktop. In Windows 10, version 20H2, the default is changed: the toast notification no longer appears and you are instead brought into the new tablet experience. You can change this behavior in Settings > System > Tablet.
    • Refresh rate of display – Change the refresh rate of your display, giving you a smoother motion. This change can be made at Settings > System > Display > Advanced display settings. Note that this may require supported hardware.
    • Microsoft Edge (built on Chromium) – And of course, Windows 10, version 20H2 is the first version of Windows to come with Microsoft Edge browser built on the Chromium engine.

    To keep up the latest improvements for end users, follow the Windows Insider Program Blog.

    For the IT professional

    • Mobile device management (MDM) – Like you've been doing with Group Policy for 20 years, you can now make granular changes to Local Users and Groups on an MDM-managed Windows 10 device by using the Local Users and Groups MDM policy.
    • Windows Autopilot – There have been many enhancements to Windows Autopilot since version 2004, including Windows Autopilot for HoloLens, Windows Autopilot and co-management, and enhancements to Autopilot reporting. For details on all of these and more, see Managing Windows Devices with Microsoft Endpoint Manager. Here's a summary of some of the enhancements:
      • Windows Autopilot for HoloLens – You know HoloLens as that untethered, holographic device. HoloLens 2 devices are commercial-ready, support Azure AD, MDM, kiosk mode, BitLocker, Windows Store for Business, and Windows Update for Business. As adoption increases, setting up your HoloLens 2 devices just got easier, with a Windows Autopilot for HoloLens 2 self-deploying mode.
      • Windows Autopilot with co-management – Co-management policy can be set during Autopilot deployment to ensure workloads are managed from the appropriate source.
      • Windows Autopilot ESP + task sequences – Using a task sequence as part of Windows Autopilot allows you to take advantage of your Configuration Manager investments and reuse those task sequences to configure devices. The task sequence can integrate right into the Enrollment Status Page (ESP), blocking access to the desktop until the task sequence completes.
      • Enhancements to Windows Autopilot deployment reporting – Currently in preview, you can monitor the status of Autopilot deployments in the Microsoft Endpoint Manager admin center: endpoint.microsoft.com. From there, select Devices > Monitor and scroll down to the Enrollment section. Click Autopilot deployment (preview). As this section grows, you will soon be able to see ESP duration broken down at a device and user targeted ESP and app installation status, policy status, and other enhancements. So stay tuned!

    • Microsoft Defender Application Guard for Office – Microsoft Defender Application Guard, designed for Windows 10, now supports Office! With this support, you can launch untrusted Office documents (those that come from outside the Enterprise) in an isolated container to prevent potentially malicious content from compromising the user's computer or exploiting their personal contents.
    • LCU + SSU = single payload – Many of you have asked us for many years to simplify the deployment of Latest Cumulative Updates (LCUs) and Servicing Stack Updates (SSUs). Starting with Windows 10, version 20H2, LCUs and SSUs have been combined into a single cumulative monthly update, available via Microsoft Catalog or Windows Server Update Services.
    • More secure biometric sign on – With enhanced sign-in security[2], Windows Hello now offers added support for virtualization-based security for certain fingerprint and face sensors, which protects, isolates, and secures a user's biometric authentication data.
    • Microsoft Edge on Chromium – Even more important for the IT pro, we're adding this feature here as well! Windows 10, version 20H2 is the first version of Windows to come with Microsoft Edge on Chromium. Need a reason why you should care? I'll give you five! I also invite you to learn more about the security features in Microsoft Edge.

    What else have we been up to?

    Aside from Windows 10, version 20H2, we've been busy with other new, exciting products and features that you may have heard about! Note that some of these may require additional licensing or services. Check out the links for details.

    • Cortana – We continue to make investments in Cortana, adding a daily briefing email from Cortana, play my emails from Outlook, Cortana availability within the Microsoft Teams mobile app (available in English today, more languages coming!), and of course the updated and improved features of Cortana in Windows 10 itself.
    • Universal Print – Universal Print provides cloud-managed print services built on Azure. Universal Print ensures that customers can print from anywhere, anytime, with secure identity credentials. And, it is integrated right into Microsoft Endpoint Manager making it easy to get started and join the thousands of Preview customers who have moved millions of print jobs to the cloud.
    • Windows Virtual Desktop – Windows Virtual Desktop is a desktop and app virtualization service that runs on Microsoft Azure. It lets end users connect securely to a full desktop from any device. And now with Microsoft Endpoint Manager, you can secure and manage your Windows Virtual Desktop VMs with policy and apps at scale, after they're enrolled.
    • Microsoft Tunnel Gateway – Microsoft Tunnel Gateway allows Microsoft Intune-enrolled iOS and Android devices to access on-premises apps and resources, with single sign-on Azure AD authentication, integrated Conditional Access policies, and is flexible enough to meet the needs of all organizations.
    • Endpoint analytics – Endpoint analytics aims to improve user productivity and reduce IT support costs by providing insights into the user experience. The insights enable IT to optimize the end-user experience with proactive support and to detect regressions to the user experience by assessing user impact of configuration changes. Enroll devices into Endpoint analytics while enabling tenant attach in Configuration Manager.
    • Productivity Score – Productivity Score provides visibility into how your organization works, helping you understand the employee experience, including how collaborative your people are. It also gives visibility into their technology experience, focusing on their endpoints, network connectivity, and Microsoft 365 apps.
    • Microsoft 365 apps – Office 365 ProPlus is the version of Microsoft Office that comes with several enterprise, government, and education subscription plans. Earlier this year we announced a name change to Microsoft 365 apps. If you have internal wikis, packages used by Configuration Manager – specifically any automatic deployment rules (ADRs), or product flows, you may need to update references to Office 365 ProPlus to this new name.
    • Microsoft Defender for Endpoint – Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection (Microsoft Defender ATP) recently went through a name change as well – to Microsoft Defender for Endpoint. Explore the latest features or functionality and find information on the new name and the products affected in the Microsoft Defender for Endpoint blog.
    • Developers! Developers! Developers! – For information on what's new for developers, including Project Reunion and new PowerToys. see Windows Dev Center. (And if you don't know why I introduce this bullet in this way, check out any of the videos here!)
    • Test Base for Microsoft 365 – Test Base provides intelligent application testing from an Azure environment, making it easier for your ISVs (software vendors) to make support statements for a new version of Windows.

    Frequently asked questions

    Is there also a Windows Server release with this release?
    Yes. The next Windows Server semi-annual channel (SAC) release is also available today. The Windows Server semi-annual channel is designed for customers who wish to take advantage of new operating system capabilities at a faster pace. Windows Server, version 20H2 is focused on reliability, performance, and other general improvements. It is also available on Azure Marketplace or the Volume Licensing Service Center.

    Will there be a Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) release with this release?
    No. Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2019 is the current LTSC option, and was released with Windows 10, version 1809 in November 2018. The next LTSC release can be expected toward the end of 2021. Customers currently using Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) 2015 for special-purpose devices should start working to upgrade those devices to Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2019, as mainstream support for LTSB 2015 ended on Oct. 13, 2020, and it entered into extended support. See the lifecycle policy here.

    Can I upgrade our devices from Windows 7 directly to Windows 10, version 20H2?
    Yes. You can directly upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10, version 20H2. We strongly encourage you to begin your upgrade process immediately as Windows 7 is no longer supported.

    How can I preview versions of Windows 10 before they become available? I want to start testing these new features early so I can deploy them when they are released!
    The Windows Insider Program for Business team has focused on enabling IT administrators to view and provide feedback on upcoming security, management, and productivity features ahead of release. And you can manage the installation of Windows 10 Insider Preview Builds across multiple devices in your organization! Read the Windows Insider Program for Business documentation for more information.

    Where can I ask specific questions about rolling out Windows 10, version 20H2 and managing updates in general?
    We hold monthly "office hours" in the Windows 10 servicing community on Tech Community with a broad group of servicing, deployment, endpoint management, and security experts. Submit your questions live during the one-hour event—or post them in advance by adding a label for "Office Hours"—and we'll do our best to help! Visit https://aka.ms/windows/officehours for more information and calendar links for upcoming events. Or click here to save the date for our November 19th session!

    Tools and resources

    To support the release of Windows 10, version 20H2, we have released updated versions of the following resources:

    Also, if you haven't seen it yet, the Windows release health dashboard (introduced with the release of Windows 10, version 1903) provides you with timely information on the status of the Windows 10, version 20H2 rollout, details on any safeguard holds or known issues (including the status of those issues, workarounds, and resolutions), and other important announcements, such as those related to lifecycle updates, upcoming events, and best practices.

    For help with configuring and deploying updates, please see the following resources:

    To see a summary of the latest documentation updates, see What's new in Windows 10, version 20H2 IT pro content on Docs.

    And finally, for a list of features and functionality that have been removed from Windows 10, or might be removed in future releases, see Features and functionality removed in Windows 10.

    For the latest updates on new releases, tools, resources, AMAs, Ask the Experts, or Windows Office Hours, stay tuned to this blog and follow us @MSWindowsITPro on Twitter. You can also follow me on Twitter @LURIE_MSFT for the latest on Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Windows, and other exciting news and events for IT pros.


    Last edited by Brink; 25 Nov 2020 at 14:24.
      My Computers

  2. Posts : 66
    Windows 10 Home

    thanks for the update
      My Computer

  3. Posts : 7,128
    Windows 10 Pro Insider

    In the before and after pic I don't see were the after is a improvement. I prefer the before.
      My Computers

  4. Posts : 7,254
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit

    Winuser said:
    In the before and after pic I don't see were the after is a improvement. I prefer the before.
    I think they could've kept the before on the left and the after on the right.
      My Computers

  5. Posts : 7,128
    Windows 10 Pro Insider

    swarfega said:
    I think they could've kept the before on the left and the after on the right.
    IMHO they should have kept the after to themselves.
      My Computers

  6. Posts : 21,421
    19044.1586 - 21H2 Pro x64
      My Computer

  7. Posts : 2,935
    Windows 10 Home x64

    It is still there at least for me, although some options have been silently moved to the new Settings screen.
      My Computer

  8. Posts : 625
    Windows 11 Pro (x64)(v23H2)

    Just noticed the update... wish me luck it doesn't bork my install...

    - - - Updated - - -

    I'm back from the update to 20H2...
    only issue so far is the Windows update window where you check for updates is in what seems to be an infinite loop checking for updates its displaying "Please Wait"

    ooh it just finished... I guess it was still installing itself or something and this was after the reboot...
    as it only got to 56% during the completing update phase on boot of Windows then displayed the logon box..

    All seems to be good now..
      My Computers

  9. Posts : 408
    Windows 10

    I got excited when seeing the example of the New Tab page. At first, it looked like we'd be able to add a ton more "Favorite Sites" tiles! (Like Firefox allows)

    But that's not what the example is showing. Too bad.

    I'd love to get rid of the News/Sports/Weather, etc., "Feeds"...or push all that down, as Favorite Site tiles are added.
      My Computer


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