back to article Windows 10 October 2020 Update arrives: Nothing that will drop your jaw, but we've had enough of 2020's fun surprises anyway

Good news for Windows fans, the October 2020 Update is here, for some people at least, and the known issues list isn't as bad as the last one. After lurking in the beta and release preview channel of the Windows Insider program for what seemed like an age, the Windows 10 October 2020 (aka 20H2) has arrived, bringing with it …

  1. Boothy Silver badge

    Update blocking info

    Quote: "Enthusiastic users wondering why Windows 10 20H2 is refusing to put in an appearance on their kit would be advised to check out Microsoft's helpful health dashboard for pointers with regard to what is blocking an update."

    Would be nice if there was some way for system specific issues, i.e. update blockers, to be shown on the machine itself. i.e. Under Windows Update.

    2004 was blocked on my desktop PC until just a couple of weeks ago, (I was on 1909). Up to that point it just provided a generic message letting me know 2004 wasn't 'ready' for my machine and that it was being worked on. Then 2004 just turned up one day!

    Presumably something specific must have been blocking it on my system. I have no issue with the blocking itself, e.g. if that avoids blue-screens due to incompatible drivers etc. But it would be nice to know exactly what did cause the block, as then I could potentially have a looked at resolving the issue myself. (e.g. If it was some driver issue with a peripheral plugged in but not used often, I could unplug and uninstall the drivers).

    1. Stuart Castle Silver badge

      Re: Update blocking info

      My 2004 update was blocked apparently because I had a Ryzen CPU and Motherboard. Not sure if it was the CPU or the motherboard though.

      I tried to update to the 2020 install last night. When I got the notification the update was ready to install, I clicked "Restart" and the PC restarted quickly. Although the version does now show as the 2020 build, I'm not convinced. I didn't see any difference on the desktop, and the PC did not display any of the normal "Windows is updating, do not shut down" or "We are installing a new feature update" message.

      Also, it took several reboots for Windows Update not to hang (it did this repeatedly, despite the Windows Update Troubleshooting wizard finding nothing).

      When I get home, I'm going to a try a re-install, to see if that sorts the problems.

      1. Paul S. Gazo

        Re: Update blocking info

        If you run "winver", it tells you what build you're on. I'd recommend checking before doing a reinstall.

        1. Stuart Castle Silver badge

          Re: Update blocking info

          Done that. Windows is reporting as being 20h2. Its just the machine rebooted immediately and windows update crashed.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Update blocking info

            its hardly a feature update it's little more than a CU so installation should be really quick so the behaviour you witnessed was probably correct

          2. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

            Re: Update blocking info

            Wouldn't that be version 2010? And then yes what does it do besides set a higher version number?

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: Update blocking info

        When I get home, I'm going to a try a re-install

        Last year I built a Ryzen system with FreeBSD on it. no problems related to CPU nor motherboard.

        But, since you're re-installing anyway... got Linux? (or BSD)

        1. LDS Silver badge

          Re: Update blocking info

          The version of FreeBSD running my pfSense 2.4.5p1 doesn't let me create queues on the NIC because ALTQ is disabled because they couldn't deploy a stable solution being Intel NICs capable of 10Gb.... should I switch to something else?

          1. Sin2x

            Re: Update blocking info

            First, I'd check if FreeBSD 12 supports your NIC and if yes, wait for pfSense 2.5 which should be releasing around December. Or ask on the pfSense forum directly.


            1. LDS Silver badge

              Re: Update blocking info

              I know. It looks it has been fixed in pfSense 2.5, but it's not available yet, and I'm not going to run a nightly build on my firewall. It's not different from waiting for Microsoft fix their AMD issues in their latest release.

              I bought this system almost two years ago and it's taking a lot of time to fix this issue.

              For the matter, the just released TrueNAS 12 (built on FreeBSD too) asks user to update their motherboard firmware and set specific BIOS/UEFI settings before installing on an AMD "zen" platform.

              W10 2004 was also delayed on one of my desktop because of the nVidia driver issue - and we could talk a lot about how FreeBSD is picky about hardware support... you have to be very careful about what hardware you buy to run some FreeBSD based appliances like pfSense or FreeNAS/TrueNAS.

              When someone talks about such kind of issues, should be aware of the risk of throwing the first stone and not being without sins...

        2. Stuart Castle Silver badge

          Re: Update blocking info

          I have a couple of Pis and various vms for Linux . I also have a Mac if i need to do any BSD stuff.

          For various reasons, Linux isnt an option for my pc.

          Also, not doing a full reinstall, just an in place upgrade.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Update blocking info

          RE: "got Linux? "

          Linux? Don't talk to me about Linux!. I'm still running DRDos. Not much works but boy is it secure!

          Oh, and well done that boy. You got your Linux comment in first! Gold star for you! <Slaps on back> I'm proud of ya! I came here specifically to read the Penguin comments; didn't have long to wait.

        4. Geoffrey W
          Thumb Up

          Re: Update blocking info

          Thanks Bob! Very helpful and useful comment. Keep it up!

      3. uro

        Re: Update blocking info

        I had the same issue with v2004, refusing to install on Zen2+X570 meanwhile my i7-4770k system from 2012 updated to v2004 without issue.

        I checked all my motherboard, chipset and peripherals for updated drivers and I was already on the latest driver for all of those, so I went through the MS Update Assistant to force v2004 onto my system and everything worked perfectly fine post install and I never unplugged any peripherals pre-update.

        Previously on my i7-4770k system Windows Update itself b0rked that machine from recieving any updates (even the usual minor suspects - dotnet, defender etc) and I had to force it to update to v1909 by using the often never mentioned Upgrade-In-Place option, ever since it has been fine and v2004 installed first time with no issues.

        IMO the Windows Update system, while it is great for keeping everything updated, is not free of its own self-defeating flaws which I have experienced twice on two entirely different systems running different versions.

        In any case I'm going to let the v20h2 update hold off for a week on both systems before I take the plunge as I'm fairly sure there will be the usual MS-snafu of something breaking along the way that hasn't been reported yet.

        1. Boothy Silver badge

          Re: Update blocking info

          I'm also on Zen2+X570 on this machine.

          I was in no rush for 2004 as it didn't really add anything I needed/wanted. About the only thing I was interested in looking at was WSL2 (I was using WSL1 already), which initially you needed 2004 to use, but an update allowed WSL2 to work on earlier versions of Windows, so I didn't need 2004 anymore.

      4. Boothy Silver badge

        Re: Update blocking info

        I'm also on a Ryzen, so possibly same issue then.

        X570 + 3800X (at the time it was only £20 more than the 3700X which is what I was initially going to buy, so why not).

        The 2004 update was also quite rapid* for myself, and I can't say I noticed many changes. It also 'just worked' for me, no issues so far (touch wood) and this was a couple of weeks ago now.

        * But then most things are rapid compared to my old i7 3770K system this replaced! :-)

  2. fidodogbreath Silver badge

    the known issues list isn't as bad as the last one

    So, beta quality this time then?

  3. xyz

    Please God nooooo...

    I was cooking my mince naked yesterday when I accidentally clicked on Solitaire. I then spent the next hour going through some hell usually only reserved for people who click "user preferences" when trying to avoid cookies on a web site. This little gem was obviously installed when I connected to the Internet a couple of weeks ago and as part of some update I didn't want, ask for and thought I'd switched the service off. MS seems determined to kill off as many of its customers as possible so it can concentrate on all that cloudy goodness (profit).

    1. Patched Out
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Please God nooooo...

      " my mince naked...". That's a euphemism I'm not familiar with.

      1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

        Re: Please God nooooo...

        I think either an unusual spell check correction, or a trendy recipe.

        In "The Archers" farming radio show, David Archer decided to try cooking for the family. Mince without gravy. Not a success, and unnamed. And they raise beef, or they used to (it's fiction though).

        Two current Google-leading "naked mince" brands are both actually selling a vegetarian or vegan product despite in at least one case describing it as "meaty". Then I got to "naked dog food" - not vegetarian at least (I don't mind but I imagine that the dog will) - and I decided not to go further.

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: Please God nooooo...

          It occurs to me that I should probably translate for my fellow Yanks ... The thing the Brits call "mince" is what we call "ground beef".

          More properly, "mince" would be any ground meat product, but the term is most often applied to the near ubiquitous beef version.

          And of course, just to eliminate any confusion, "mincemeat" in Blighty is the same product that we call mincemeat, and usually contains no meat at all these days.

    2. jake Silver badge

      Re: Please God nooooo...

      "I was cooking my mince naked yesterday"

      Get any on ya?

  4. keith_w Bronze badge

    Just installed it.

    Read the article, thought I would give it a shot. Took 5 minutes to download and install, started the reboot, went and made a coffee, came back, watched the restart complete and logged back on. Total time, less than 15 minutes. Issues none. I did notice that I went from Version 2004 to 20H2. This is how an update should be. I must however note that I have never had an issue with bad updates on this or any of my other machines.

    1. stiine Silver badge

      Re: Just installed it.

      Consider yourself the luckiest computer user on the planet.

      1. Snake Silver badge

        Re: Just installed it.

        I've installed or updated Win10 on 8 computers multiple times and only had issues twice: one was stubborn and used 3 tries to have a Win10 update stick, the other had a RAID driver issue and borked on the install-upgrade from Win7 but I was able to recover. After numerous installs and updates I consider that a pretty good run of luck.

  5. amacater

    Hmmmmm :(

    Took an age on a relatively modern Lenovo laptop which was already fully up to date with Windows Update and has 24G of memory and NVME. Not much change: nagged me to set up Windows services I'd already set up (This was using Windows Upgrade Assistant from Fully up to date so I can't whinge about driver issues now being because I'm using unsupported software but yes, meh, that's a couple of hours I won't get back.

  6. Zarno Bronze badge

    Am I the only one...

    I can't be the only one who wishes they would just freeze and do a "Windows 11" release already?

    1. Wade Burchette Silver badge

      Re: Am I the only one...

      I wish they would unfreeze and go back to Windows 7. I'm tired of going through 5 steps of what was once 1 step.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    updated 4 test windows pro 1909 systems, it trashed Corp VPN so badly on half of them they had to be regressed as could not re-create, one machine seemed to loose machine cert as well, all domained machines.

    I was on fast-track and relentlessly bleeted on about serious VPN issues , nothing ever got done, too worried about fixing shiny bits instead :-)

    1. Zarno Bronze badge

      That's by design, VPN doesn't allow them to perform essential data analysis, and is unsafe for their bottom lines.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    MS BS

    The latest update, hosed up file explorer for me. If I right click on files some times explorer locks up. It is intermittent.

    Tried to report to MS via built in tool. They had a recorder they wanted me to run while reproducing the issue. Guess what the issue will not appear when I run the recorder. Great tool MS.

    Salt to the would, despite the truckloads of telemetry MS collects every hour off my PC, they wanted me to go through the charade of identifying myself and the specifics of my computer (make, model specs, etc.) as if they did not already have all of that cataloged via their telemetry. If their telemetry is so good, why has it not caught my explorer problem, and why haven't they fixed it. I thought that was the whole purpose.

    1. Geoffrey W

      Re: MS BS

      They probably know where you live too, and which forums you whinge on - Don't open your front door to any callers without checking first; especially after 2:00 am. Anyone with an unusually bright toothed smile and hipster beard who passes you on the street - stay away from them at all costs. Unplug your computer and remove the hard drive, and take it down into your basement, and lock the doors. Get a 5G blocker so you don't get covid and eat only non GMO foods. Stay safe, brother, stay calm. Help is on it's way with a safe and waddling Linux distro..

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