Microsoft Promotes Windows 10 1511 to Current Branch for Business

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Microsoft announced today that they are moving the November release of Windows 10 into the Current Branch for Business. Although businesses running Windows 10 1511 won’t need to take any action immediately, it’s important to understand the what this new designation means and how it will impact those running build 1507.

What the company is announcing today is that Windows 10 build 1511 is ready for your organization to begin broadly deploying the release. To be promoted to the CBB ring, the company examined feedback from early adopters for stability, bugs and everything else that can impact your operation; this specific build also includes the March cumulative update (KB3140768), which has been injected into the installation image.

If you already have machines running build 1511, then there’s no action needed other than running the monthly update procedures. If you are still using machines with build 1507, listed below is the impact this declaration may have on your deployment:

  • For devices being serviced using Windows Update for Business and configured to “Defer upgrades,” Windows 10 1511 will begin to deploy as soon as the updated media has been published. Note that the deferral policies that specify an additional number of months to defer the feature update are not supported for devices running Windows 10 1507.
  • For devices being serviced using Windows Server Updates Services, the updates to the existing Windows 10 1511 feature updates will need to be re-approved once the new updated media is received, unless you have an automatic update rule configured for the “Upgrades” category.
  • For those using the System Center Configuration Manager Windows 10 servicing plans to keep Windows 10 devices up to date, the updated media will be detected as “business ready,” causing servicing plans based on that “business ready” designation to begin to be evaluated.
  • For devices that will be upgraded using System Center Configuration Manager or Microsoft Deployment Toolkit task sequences, you may want to switch to the latest media (downloaded from the Volume Licensing Service Center) instead of the current Windows 10 1511 media. Alternatively, you can inject the March cumulative update (KB3140768) into your existing media.

Microsoft has not publicly said how long after a major build of Windows 10 is released to when it will be promoted to the CBB. Seeing as this release took about five months to make it to the new distribution ring, this is the first baseline release we can use to understand when the Anniversary update will be pushed to the CBB as well.

You can read more about this update into the CBB, here.