Tip: Get the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update on Your Own Schedule

Posted on October 17, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 20 Comments

The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is now available. But what if you wish to hold off a bit?

As with previous major upgrades, there are good reasons to hold off: Microsoft’s track record isn’t that great, quality-wise. (That said, the previous version, the Creators Update, rolled out, if slowly, with little drama.)

When it comes to deploying the Fall Creators Update, Microsoft is again using a phased rollout strategy in which “known-good” PC configurations will get the update first. Over time, that list of known-good configurations will expand as more and more people out in the real world install the update and expand Microsoft’s understanding of what works and what doesn’t. If this goes as planned, the upgrade will go out to more and more people over a three or four months and then be deployed as completely as is possible.

You can, of course, get the Fall Creators Update as soon as possible by manually upgrading with the Upgrade Assistant or downloading the ISO. But many will want to hold off on this major update instead.

Fortunately, you can do so. How you do so will depend on which Windows 10 product edition you’re using.

Windows 10 Pro

As you may know, Microsoft lets Windows 10 Pro users defer feature updates like the Fall Creators Update for up to one year. (You can likewise defer monthly quality updates for only one month, because they always include security fixes.)

To do so, navigate to Settings > Update & security > Windows Update and select the link “Advanced options.” The Advanced options page appears.

Note: This has changed a lot since the previous release.

To defer the Fall Creators Update to a later date, open the drop-down under “A feature update includes new capabilities and improvements. It can be deferred for this many days:” and select the number of days, from 1 to 365.

Note: Alternatively, you can pause all updates for up to 35 days. This actually isn’t a bad approach for the Fall Creators Update, since that should be enough time to know if this update is a dog.

Windows 10 Home

Windows 10 Home does not include the ability to defer updates, so you’ll need to get a bit creative.

The obvious approach is to configure your network as a metered connection, which will indicate to Microsoft that it should not deliver updates because you are ostensibly paying for your bandwidth. (You can imagine that the ~4 GB needed to install the Fall Creators Update could rack up some big bills for users such connections.)

This workaround isn’t ideal, for sure. It doesn’t work (easily) with wired Ethernet connections. And you won’t get security updates either. But you should be OK for a month or two, and if you are serious about delaying the Fal Creators Update, this workaround will do the trick.

To configure your network connection as a metered connection, navigate to Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi. Then, select your currently-connected network. On the page that appears, change the option “Set as metered connection” to On.

Be sure to change this back to “Off” in 30 or 60 days, of course.

 

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Comments (20)

20 responses to “Tip: Get the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update on Your Own Schedule”

  1. xapache

    Actually Upgrade Assistant isn't upgrading at the moment. It just says Thank you for upgrading to the latest addition. I imagine that will system will start updating this afternoon (10 PST) like last time.

  2. Jason

    I’m actually surprised that I didn’t have to force my older laptop for 1709. I forced 1703 in June...

    wonder if MS is accelerating the rollout?

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  7. annashetty

    I discovered this is an instructive and fascinating post so i suspect as much it is extremely valuable and proficient. I might want to thank you for the endeavors you have made in composing this article. Neither of my families 930's (two of them) will be able to update but they are both on Creators Update so will continue to get monthly security / feature patches - hopefully for a couple of years.

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  8. James Wilson

    I've just updated a Mac Pro 2009 (Bootcamp), Surface Pro 4, Surface 3 and Lenovo S100 to Fall Creators Update and all appear to be good. My family Lumia 650 has now also auto-updated to the Fall Creators Update version of Windows 10 mobile OTA so that's in the wild too (I updated my Lumia 950XL via Insiders). Neither of my families 930's (two of them) will be able to update but they are both on Creators Update so will continue to get monthly security / feature patches - hopefully for a couple of years. This means the 930 will have been fully supported for five years!


    So a successful update from my side (and no loss of UWP apps on any of my family machines). Is it me or is the Iris Scanner on the 950XL faster now?

  9. fbman

    I would wait for the fall creators update, There is a quite a big bug in the release version of the update. All the UWP apps disappear. According the MS forums, MS are working on a solution.

  10. mikiem

    ISOs are now available for regular home & pro, as well as Insider versions that include Enterprise. I use the latter to create a [unactivated] Windows To Go external drive to, in most cases, eliminate the guesswork of whether the new version [1709] will run without major problems on assorted hardware. You can DYI with non-enterprise versions, but I don't want to use something that might automatically activate, & count against the allowable hardware changes before 10 deactivates.


    At any rate, booting to the Windows To Go drive & testing tells me if the upgrade can be gotten out of the way, or if it needs to be delayed until further patches, drivers etc. are available etc.

  11. chrisrut

    I'll be curious to see the deployment/release rate for this version. Based on progressively improved update experience, with each subsequent release, I wonder if we (the larger user base) can we expect a similar incremental improvement with this edition?

    MS's ability to roll out updates of this scope to the almost astronomical universe of Windows systems is a very underrated accomplishment - I remain impressed.

    Now, if MS could just make it quicker - uncoordinated down-time in our corporate environment during updates is pretty much the only pain point in W10 for the enterprise. Still think MS is missing a bet by not leveraging virtualization technology to allow real-time fork-like updates while an image continue to run the old system. The benefits would be worth the increase in resources needed to do it. Ya listening, Microsoft?

    • johnbaxter

      In reply to chrisrut:

      Once you get 1709 the upgrade process becomes slower and faster. More work is done before the first restart and it is slower (and involves less data download), and as before the machine remains usable. Because of the work done before the restart, there is less downtime after the restart—dramatically so with spinning disk boot volumes.


      I don’t think this process has moved down to 1703—I could be wrong as I so often am.

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  13. Peter Cook

    The creators update cost us $80.00 in bandwidth charges as it continually failed on my Mothers laptop. She uses a 4G wireless dongle that had 50 GByte of data available on it and 2 years to use it, as she only uses around 1 - 2 GB a month I was perplexed as to why all of a sudden there was no bandwidth left, I recharged her account with another $50 payment that then disappeared a couple of days later (she lives 1000 Kilometers away). Fortunately I was due to visit her and upon investigation I found the creators update was failing at the installation stage and then downloading the update again and subsequently failing until the bandwidth ran out.


    Call to Microsoft support were useless as all they did in the end was to advise me to turn of updates, which would leave the computers unable to be updated. I ended up reinstalling Windows 10 which then resulted in all updates installing correctly and her usage returning to normal levels.


    Less than impressed with Microsoft support and the system forcing a download each time....


    A bit nervous to see another 4-5 GByte package is to be updated again.

  14. JHawkZZ

    I just disable the Windows Update service and enable it only when ready for updates. You don’t get security updates, but it does provide a stable platform until you’re ready to update.

  15. Waethorn

    Time to rebuild some ISO's. I think I'm going to stop supporting Windows 8.1 systems for repair.

  16. NotThatSRoss

    Paul,


    I'm not in the habit of second-guessing statements coming out of Redmond, but I do have to take issue with the 'phased roll-out' Microsoft is touting, or as you described "Microsoft is again using a phased rollout strategy in which “known-good” PC configurations will get the update first. Over time, that list of known-good configurations will expand as more and more people out in the real world install the update and expand Microsoft’s understanding of what works and what doesn’t."


    When MS went to this "phased roll-out" last Spring after the issues they had with last fall's Windows update cycle, my 7-year-old Gateway (yes, Gateway) desktop PC got the update a full two-months before my SP3 did!?! Can't image that the old Gateway is a higher "known-good" PC configuration that their own SP3.

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