Windows 11: A guide to the updates

A Windows launch isn’t the end a process — it’s really just the beginning. As with Windows 10, Microsoft continually works on improving Windows 11 by fixing bugs, releasing security patches, and occasionally adding new features.In this story we summarize what you need to know about each update released to the public for Windows 11. For each build, we’ve included the date of its release and a link to Microsoft’s announcement about it. The most recent updates appear first.Note: If you’re still using Windows 10, see “Windows 10: A guide to the updates.” And if you’re looking for information about Insider Program previews for upcoming feature releases of Windows 11, see “Windows 11 Insider Previews: What’s in the latest build?”Updates to Windows 11 original releaseKB5013943 (OS Build 22000.675)Release date: May 10, 2022This build includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the May 2022 Security Updates notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update. There is one known issue in this update, in which after installing Windows updates released January 11, 2022 or later on an affected version of Windows, recovery discs created using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app in Control Panel might be unable to start. Recovery discs that were created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app on devices that have installed Windows updates released before January 11, 2022 are not affected by this issue and should start as expected.(Get more info about KB5013943.) KB5012643 (OS Build 22000.652) PreviewRelease date: April 25, 2022This build fixes a wide variety of bugs, including a memory leak issue that affected Windows systems that are in use 24 hours each day of the week, another that caused video subtitles to be partially cut off, and another that prevented you from using the minimize, maximize, and close buttons on a maximized app window.There is one known issue in this update: after IT admins install the Windows updates released January 11, 2022 or later, recovery discs created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app in Control Panel might be unable to start. Recovery discs that were created with this app on devices running Windows updates released before January 11, 2022 are not affected by this issue.(Get more info about KB5012643 Preview.) KB5012592 (OS Build 22000.613)Release date: April 12, 2022This build includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the April 2022 Security Updates notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.There is one known issue in this update, in which after installing the Windows updates released January 11, 2022 or later on an affected version of Windows, recovery discs (CD or DVD) created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app in Control Panel might be unable to start. Recovery discs that were created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app on devices that have installed Windows updates released before January 11, 2022 are not affected by this issue and should start as expected. (Get more info about KB5012592.)KB5011563 (OS Build 22000.593) PreviewRelease date: March 28, 2022This build allows Windows to display up to three high-priority “toast” (popup) notifications simultaneously for apps that send notifications for calls, reminders, or alarms using Windows notifications. It also fixes more than two dozen bugs, including one that crashed SystemSettings.exe, and another that affected searchindexer.exe and prevented Microsoft Outlook’s offline search from returning recent emails. There is one known issue in this update, in which when after IT admins install the Windows updates released January 11, 2022 or later, recovery discs (CDs or DVDs) created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app in Control Panel might be unable to start. Recovery discs that were created by using the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app on devices which have installed Windows updates released before January 11, 2022 are not affected by this issue and should start as expected. (Get more info about KB5011563 Preview.)KB5011493 (OS Build 22000.556)Release date: March 8, 2022This build fixes a bug that occurs when you attempt to reset a Windows device and its apps have folders that contain reparse data, such as Microsoft OneDrive or OneDrive for Business. When you select Remove everything, files that have been downloaded or synced locally from OneDrive might not be deleted.It also includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the March 2022 Security Updates notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.(Get more info about KB5011493.)KB5010414 (OS Build 22000.527) PreviewRelease date: February 15, 2022This build lets you share cookies between Microsoft Edge Internet Explorer mode and Microsoft Edge, and adds support for hot adding and the removal of non-volatile memory (NVMe) namespaces. It also adds a variety of other features, including the ability to instantly mute and unmute a Microsoft Teams call from the taskbar, and quickly share open application windows directly from your taskbar to a Microsoft Teams call.It also fixes many bugs, including one that affected the Windows search service and occurred when you queried using the proximity operator, and one that prevented printing properly for some low integrity process apps.(Get more info about KB5010414 Preview.)KB5010386 (OS Build 22000.493)Release date: February 8, 2022The build fixes a bug that causes a Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) modify operation to fail if the operation contains the SamAccountName and UserAccountControl attribute. It also includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the February 2022 Security Updates notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.(Get more info about KB5010386.)KB5008353 (OS Build 22000.469) PreviewRelease date: January 25, 2022The build fixes a wide variety of bugs, including one in which Windows’ audio service stopped responding on some devices that support hardware-accelerated Bluetooth audio, another that prevented icons from appearing on the taskbar of a secondary display, and another that prevented the touch keyboard from appearing on the lock screen when a device has a Microsoft account (MSA).There is one known issue in this update, in which recent emails might not appear in the search results of the Microsoft Outlook desktop app. For a short-term fix, you can disable Windows Desktop Search, which will cause Microsoft Outlook to use its built-in search. (Get more info about KB5008353.)KB5010795 (OS Build 22000.438)Release date: January 17, 2022The out-of-band build fixes two bugs, one of which caused IP Security (IPSEC) connections that contain a Vendor ID to fail. VPN connections using Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) or IP security Internet Key Exchange (IPSEC IKE) could have also been affected. The other fixed bug prevented removable media formatted using the Resilient File System (ReFS) from mounting or caused the removable media to mount in the RAW file format. This issue occured after installing the January 11, 2022 Windows update.There is one known issue in this update, in which some image editing programs might not render colors correctly on certain high dynamic range (HDR) displays.(Get more info about KB5010795.)KB5009566 (OS Build 22000.434)Release date: January 11, 2022The build fixes a bug in the Japanese Input Method Editors (IME), and includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the January 2022 Security Update notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.There is one issue in this update, in which after installing Windows 11, some image editing programs might not render colors correctly on certain high dynamic range (HDR) displays. (Get more info about KB5009566.)KB5008215 (OS Build 22000.376)Release date: December 14, 2021The build includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the December 2021 Security Update notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.There are no known issues in this update.(Get more info about KB5008215.)KB5007262 (OS Build 22000.348) PreviewRelease date: November 22, 2021This optional update can be downloaded from the Microsoft Update Catalog or by going to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Optional updates available.This builds fixes a wide variety of bugs, including one that caused File Explorer to stop working after you closed a File Explorer window, and another that caused flickering when you hovered over icons on the taskbar if you’ve applied a high contrast theme.There are no known issues in this update.(Get more info about KB5007262 Preview.)KB5007215 (OS Build 22000.318)Release date: November 9, 2021The build includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the November 2021 Security Update notes. It also fixes a bug that causes improper rendering of some user interface elements or when drawing within some apps. And it makes quality improvements to the servicing stack, which is the component that installs Windows updates.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.(Get more info about KB5007215.)KB5006746 (OS Build 22000.282) PreviewRelease date: October 21, 2021This non-security build fixes a wide variety of bugs, including one that caused distortion in the audio captured by voice assistants, and another in Windows Defender Exploit Protection that prevented some Microsoft Office applications from working on machines that have certain processors.There are two known issues in this build, including one in which Windows print clients might encounter errors when connecting to a remote printer shared on a Windows print server after the build is installed.(Get more info about KB5006746.)KB5006674 (OS Build 22000.258)Release date: October 12, 2021This build fixes a bug related to compatibility issues between some Intel “Killer” and “SmartByte” networking software and Windows 11 (original release). It also makes quality improvements to the servicing stack, which is the component that installs Windows updates.The build also includes a wide variety of security updates. For details, see Microsoft’s Security Update Guide and the October 2021 Security Update notes.What IT needs to know: Because this is a security update, it should be applied relatively soon. Over the next few weeks, check for reports about problematic issues, and if all seems well, apply the update.(Get more info about KB5006674.)Windows 11 original releaseRelease date: October 5, 2021Windows 11 is the first new version of Windows that Microsoft has released since July 2015, when it launched Windows 10. Here’s a quick summary of what’s new in it. (For more details, see our in-depth review of Windows 11.)
The Start menu has been redesigned and slimmed down, and Live Tiles have been eliminated. It’s now easier to find applications to launch and files on which you’ve recently worked.
Snap Layouts lets you group your open windows into one of a half-dozen pre-built screen layouts. Snap Groups helps you quickly switch from one Snap Layout to another.
The Windows look and feel has gotten an overhaul, with rounded windows, spiffier animations, and an overall softer feel. Some built-in apps, such as File Explorer, get a simpler, easier-to-use interface.
You can chat and videoconference directly from the taskbar using Microsoft Teams. However, it isn’t the full Teams service, so the full suite of enterprise Teams features, such the use of channels and being able to search through message archives, isn’t available.
Cortana is still available in Windows 11 but doesn’t appear in the taskbar and is not enabled by default.
For IT, these features are notable:
Windows 11 requires hardware with a TPM (Trusted Platform Module) 2.0 built into it for security. TPM uses hardware-based encryption to encrypt disks using Windows capabilities like BitLocker, and can stop dictionary attacks against passwords, among other capabilities.
Windows 11 has a once-a-year feature update schedule rather than the two-a-year cycle under Windows 10. That will reduce update time, effort, and headaches.
To help make sure enterprise applications and other software can run on Windows 11, Microsoft has released Test Base for Microsoft 365, an automated testing tool to check application compatibility.

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