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4/8/2015
03:05 PM
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Windows 10 Redstone Update Expected In 2016

One year after the Windows 10 launch, Microsoft will deliver two major operating system updates under the code name Redstone.



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Microsoft isn't planning to release Windows 10 until this summer, but we're already hearing about fixes coming to its long-awaited operating system. It looks there are some major updates in the works for 2016.

Neowin's Brad Sams first reported the initiative on April 7. Two internal sources at Microsoft have confirmed the development of its next big Windows 10 update, which is codenamed Redstone, he wrote.

It seems that Microsoft has a predilection for employing codenames. Windows 10, for example, was referred to by an internal codename "Windows Threshold" or "Windows TH" in its earlier stages. Its predecessor, Windows 8.1, was formerly called "Windows Blue." Redstone is a reference to Minecraft, the game that Microsoft acquired as part of its purchase of game developer Mojang this past September.

The first iteration of Redstone for Windows 10 will reportedly roll out in June of 2016, Neowin reports, with a second wave following a few months later in October. It doesn't seem like a "Windows 11" name is in the works for either launch. Redstone isn't expected to be the complete overhaul that Windows 10 will be, and 2016 is still early for that kind of name change, considering all the hype around an OS that still hasn't been released in full.

[Microsoft Brings Tech to US Diplomacy Center]

Updates will be available for testing before Redstone launches in full. It seems as though the Windows Insider program will continue to allow eager users to try OS advancements before they are officially released.

ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley further reports that Redstone's rollout will follow a smaller Windows 10 update this fall. Redstone will be available like regular OS updates and fixes, which will be automatically downloaded to Windows 10 devices as they are released every month or so. This update will be bigger, however, and supposedly integrate new support for devices that won't be part of Windows 10 when it launches.

A major project like Redstone will likely address the updates required by devices that build upon the Windows 10 platform, Foley explains. These include products like the Surface Hub, HoloLens, and Windows Phone. Smaller updates and fixes are better suited for features that aren't part of the Windows core.

The Redstone updates are part of Microsoft's larger plan to develop Windows 10 at a faster pace. Given that it's not yet available to the masses, talk of its first big update is a positive sign that Microsoft is keeping its promise.

This is the most recent major update on Windows 10 and the first on updates to occur after its release. Prior to this, we learned that Microsoft will attempt to do away with traditional passwords in its new OS by employing biometric authentication as an alternative. A new feature entitled Windows Hello will allow users to unlock their devices by scanning their face, iris, or fingerprint.

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Kelly Sheridan is the Staff Editor at Dark Reading, where she focuses on cybersecurity news and analysis. She is a business technology journalist who previously reported for InformationWeek, where she covered Microsoft, and Insurance & Technology, where she covered financial ... View Full Bio

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