Windows 10 – Things to consider when transitioning to Windows 10 vNext

In my org, there has often been confusion (and some would say resistance) to the new Windows as a Service model introduced with Windows 10.

Many are used to the legacy cadence of evaluating a new release of Windows several years after it’s released, with many not even considering an upgrade until the bell starts tolling on the Windows release (I’ve lived this since Windows NT 4.0, and many still recall that XP to 7 migration).

I’m not going to write about how Windows as a Service works as there is a great overview here

The one thing my org has struggled with (five releases in), has been when and how to decide when a release is ready, and what needs to be done in terms of the IT “Stuff” that needs doing.

Often, some of these are forgotten or is an afterthought.  Here are a few that stand out for me

SCCM

You should always confirm that your SCCM is up to date to at least a version that supports the new feature release.  SCCM updates three times a year.  Here is a good place to check the SCCM Support matrix with Windows 10

ADK

It’s always good practice to upgrade the ADK with each release of Windows 10.  There have been issues in the recently with ADK, v1607 and 1703 stand out particularly, but I’ve had no issues in my org with 1709.  I tend to delay the ADK upgrade for a week or two and only upgrade my test boot image to ensure that there are no issues that impact my org before upgrading my production boot image

Group Policy Admin Templates

For some reason, I always seem to forget to update the group policy ADMX files in my central policy store.  This isn’t always a big problem, but when you want to start doing new and cool things like Windows Insider for Business and the Group Policy to set this isn’t there, it can become quite annoying.  For this reason, I am now including it into my processes to transition to Windows 10 vNext.

There is no doubt more to add here and I will update accordingly.

I’m also planning to share my thoughts around how my org validates and accepts the next release of Windows 10 transitioning from Release Ready to Business Ready.

 

P.

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