back to article Microsoft reissues Windows 8.1 Update for enterprise customers

Microsoft has patched a bug that prevented enterprise customers from receiving software fixes after they installed the Windows 8.1 Update, meaning all customers should now receive the update as Redmond's new "servicing baseline." Earlier this month, Microsoft suspended distribution of the update to business customers who use …

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  1. Havin_it
    WTF?

    Well that's all well and good, but...

    >Mere mortals, on the other hand, had better get a move on. Microsoft says that consumers who have not installed the update by May 13 will not receive any future updates; rather, installing the Windows 8.1 Update will be the only option they see when they run Windows Update. ®

    I just updated 8 to 8.1 on my OEM laptop, and from there there's no sign of the fabled 8.1 Update (1?) in Windows Update.

    Should I be worried?

    1. Gordon 11

      Re: Well that's all well and good, but...

      ... and from there there's no sign of the fabled 8.1 Update (1?) in Windows Update

      It was there for me, although it was not set to be installed automatically - I had to select it manually.

      Odd for something that is to shortly become a requirement.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Well that's all well and good, but...

        Unless they've decided to make it automatic at the end of the month, Microsoft have just shot themselves in the foot again over Windows 8.

        1. El Andy

          Re: Well that's all well and good, but...

          Typically with major updates like Service Packs and IE versions they'll roll them out as optional for everyone then gradually move them over to automatic installs in a staged process so as not to overload the servers and to give them a way out of issues start to arise.

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: Well that's all well and good, but...

            But a timescale of 1 month doesn't allow for that...

    2. JW 1

      Re: Well that's all well and good, but...

      Having just gone through this as a test with a laptop's restore disks;

      I had to install all pending updates then installing 8.1 from "The Store" the Update came with it. It wasn't a separate install.

      Side note a fresh restore of a Win8 laptop had to install 180+ updates before it would even attempt to install 8.1 and that sucker is more than 3.5gb.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Poor windows 8

    I can see the tumbleweed rolling past with this story due to number of users who use windows 8 and actually give a damn

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows 8.x is used in the enterprise?

    1. plrndl
      Linux

      Windows 8.x is used in the enterprise?

      Yes, Microsoft uses it.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Windows 8.x is used in the enterprise?

        It would be interesting to know what they use as desk furniture.

        IMHO the reason touch screens are unsuitable for business is, that with the exception of some infrequently used control applications, anybody actually working on a computer, rather than just browsing / reading , needs different furniture to meet the European DSE regs when using a touchscreen.

        The screen needs to be flat on the surface of the desk to navigate it but the screen also needs to be vertical to avoid neck strain.

        Microsoft's obsession with the next big thing (TIFKAM) is a dead end. Of course EU DSE regs don't apply in the US so that's all right then. "Get me a new staff member this one's broken"

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Windows 8.x is used in the enterprise?

          Okay, I think NCIS is generally poorly-written but just about entertaining enough to let most of the clunkers pass. But this week's Windows 8.x ad was so obvious I thought I'll never watch NCIS again! Of course the ad alone didn't mean anyone actually uses it bar as a prop. They should write a disclaimer into the relevant scene in future. Abby could ask Gibbs something like "Do we really have to use this shit, Gibbs?"

          They can afford artistic integrity. And even if the real NCIS use it, some subtlety is better than none.

    2. hplasm
      Devil

      Re: Windows 8.x is used in the enterprise?

      Yes, but only the one with Captain Archer.

  4. pirithous

    Windows' Future in the Enterprise

    Windows' intentional compatibility across decades of software makes it slower versus a comparable Linux system, along with the fact that NTFS does very poor with small files and fragments easily. Microsoft doesn't work on making the code for the NT kernel faster if it doesn't bring them more revenue, and this is one of the problems with their business model. Also, I've heard a lot of the good programmers have left Microsoft or retired. In the open source world, there's a concerted effort to make the code run as fast and efficiently as possible. Even though Windows (and Linux) wasn't built to be what it has become today, at least with Linux they make the effort to optimize the bits. Microsoft really needs to open source the Windows kernel, but I bet this would be a big embarrassment as they don't even understand what's going on anymore. It probably has been added to over and over again so much so, that it's one big cryptic mess. When you have transparency, some really good things can happen. When you hide everything behind closed doors, an "Embrace, extend and extinguish" philosophy, mixed with the intention of extracting the maximum amount of profit out of every person who uses your product, this type of business model only lasts so long. It's starting to fail now, as we have reached the tipping point.

    When people had an opportunity to leave Microsoft for another platform, they went in droves to iOS and Android. The Linux desktop I believe will increase in market share as soon as more computers start coming from the factory with Linux pre-installed, and consumers are aware of the savings reaped from a free (as in beer) OS. Expect to see Microsoft do everything in their power to prevent this from happening -- although their old tried and true tactics aren't really working very well any longer. The future also remains untold now that support for XP has ended, which means that the Linux desktop will most likely get a market share bump. More governmental agencies will start shifting to Linux, as has been a trend in the news as of late. It just takes awareness for users to break out of the eternal prison that Microsoft wishes the world would stay in. This isn't the 90's any longer, and Microsoft is cleaving to old philosophies along with the hope that their feudalistic and totalitarian Windows store will be a big hit. On one hand I understand the goal to kill off the Win32 desktop, but the worries developers have creates a point of contention. For instance, many developers currently sell software without giving any cut to MS. Another major issue developers have is if their software gets blacklisted or completely locked out of the store due to some type of dispute. With Microsoft being the gatekeeper and by locking down Windows to a point where they own your machine and you don't, you cannot trust in the Windows store just because of their recent Herbalife brainwashing meeting featuring teleprompters.

    I cannot see Windows 8.x being very suitable for the enterprise. I mean, for fuck's sake, you have to pay MS to buy a damn key to sideload software onto a computer. MS is incapable of getting a clue, and I recommend businesses and everybody else dump Windows and move to a platform which actually has a future.

    1. APJ
      Meh

      Re: Windows' Future in the Enterprise

      Saying it doesn't make it so, though. Over the past decade I must have read the same comments a thousand times here on the Reg. Linux desktop adoption is still woefully low, particularly in the enterprise. There are vanishingly small numbers of examples of organisations dumping Windows on the desk, one German city isn't sufficiently noteworthy, though it is pretty interesting. Certainly when I've seen orgs in the UK have a go (one of the County Councils in the midlands had a good try a few years back) it was a disaster.

      I'm no fan of the monopoly in general, but the Windows product set is mature, Microsoft make all manner of mis-steps with it all of the time, but if you have 10,000 or 100,000 machines there's a huge eco-system out there of well managed, well understood and scalable tools to help you herd it all. The Linux world just isn't like that. I'm less convinced these days that it really matters. Linux and its related distros have fantastic coverage in the server space, enough to keep the tech guys who want to play in that space happy and Windows rolls on at the front end. It all seems to work ok for me.

      Also, it's true that you need to purchase a side-loading cert, but it's $100 for as many as you like, so whilst it's not ideal, it's also a minor irritant which ultimately should make the platform much more secure to everyone's benefit.

      1. Preston Munchensonton
        Pint

        Re: Windows' Future in the Enterprise

        <i>which ultimately should make the platform much more secure to everyone's benefit.</i>

        You made me start to laugh so hard that you owe me another pint!

      2. Vic

        Re: Windows' Future in the Enterprise

        if you have 10,000 or 100,000 machines there's a huge eco-system out there of well managed, well understood and scalable tools to help you herd it all. The Linux world just isn't like that.

        Actually, the Linux world *is* like that. Herding large numbers of machines is pretty easy - indeed, you can even use things like AD to do the job, if that's your preference. And there are Free alternatives to boot.

        Vic.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Windows' Future in the Enterprise

      They've ported the kernel to mobile, ARM tablet, and XBox so there must still be some expertise there.

      However the walled garden and the update release schedule are both completely unsuitable for enterprise. Either they split Windows into consumer and enterprise or they'll end up pushing businesses over to alternatives.

      1. pirithous

        Re: Windows' Future in the Enterprise

        They've ported the kernel to mobile, ARM tablet, and XBox so there must still be some expertise there.

        You make a good point, and that point indicates that MS still has some extremely competent developers. What's unfortunate, is that these good developers who have the know-how get smothered by corporate politics and idiotic user interfaces. There is a post on the internet from a MS developer who wrote a rant about how messed up things are within Microsoft, and how many of the good developers left. I wonder how many other untold stories there are, from people inside the company who have something to say but won't.

        http://blog.zorinaq.com/?e=74

  5. D@v3

    how does one know if they have updated to the Update?

    I have over the last couple of days installed what could be called a fuck ton (about 1gb) of "Windows 8.1 Updates" on one of our test devices, but can't see anything to indicate that it has been updated to Windows 8.1 Update (or what ever the hell it's being called).

    That is one of the benefits of service packs, you can see nice and easily that you are on Win8.1 SP1.

    Anyone else got more of a clue than I?

    1. Havin_it

      Re: how does one know if they have updated to the Update?

      I recall seeing a screenie where "Windows 8.1 Update 1" appears over the start tiles, but can't put my hand to the link now.

      1. Steven Raith

        Re: how does one know if they have updated to the Update?

        Pretty sure it comes as part of Windows Updates, I know for sure that if you update any machine to Windows 8.1 through the store from Windows 8, it's rolled into it anyway - so you'll get the limited window controls and taskbar in NewUI mode from any Win 8.1 update you do as of last week or so.

        I think an OEM Win 8.1 build taken out of a box and put online today would also get those updates before presenting you with Userland, but I've not tested that yet.

        Still, it's a bit of a stupid move - wonder what's caused them to enforce this? Some kind of gaping hole, or just something implemented in Update1 that makes life easier for them from a future updates sort of thing?

        Steven R

      2. cheesey_toastie

        Re: how does one know if they have updated to the Update?

        In the Windows menu do you have a power button on the top right? If so that's 8.1 Update... It must be in the system properties too!?

  6. PeterM42
    Thumb Down

    The only Windows 8 update worth looking at........

    ........would be Windows 9 (IF they can get that right).

    OR

    Windows 7 (which is at least USABLE)

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