Windows 10 Quality Vs Feature Updates – which is More Critical?

Microsoft releases two types of updates for Windows 10. Windows 10 quality updates and feature updates. Do you know what is the difference between quality & feature updates? Do you know which is a critical update for your Business? Is this a no-brainer? How to Secure Windows 10 with SCCM? You will get answers to all the above questions from this post.

For Windows 7, we had service packs and those service packs are mini-updates operating systems. But with Windows 10, you don’t get any service packs. There are two types of updates with Windows 10.

  1. Quality Updates
  2. Fature Updates

[Related Posts – Windows 10 and SCCM Patch Management (Windows 10 Quality Update Management) process & Intune Quality and Feature Update Policies for Windows 10 devices]

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Difference between Windows 10 Quality Updates and Feature Updates?

Let’s understand what is quality updates and what is feature updates with some details.

Windows 10 Feature Updates

The feature update is the major update for Windows 10. It’s similar to Windows 7 to Windows 8 upgrade. Windows 10 will have two (2) feature updates in a year. This Windows 10 feature update is called the Semi-Annual Channel (SAC) update.

Update on 17th Nov 2021 – Microsoft announced that Microsoft removed the semi-annual channel update for Windows 10 on Nov 16, 2021. There will only be one feature update per year for Windows 10.

1E Nomad

The SAC channel offers twice-per-year Windows 10 feature updates that release around March and September, with an 18-month servicing period for each release.

Microsoft says it will be released in March and September. But the fact is the feature update normally releases in the months of April and October.

Starting with Windows 10, version 1809, feature updates for Windows 10 Enterprise and Education editions with a targeted release month of September will be serviced for 30 months from their release date (more information can be found here).

Windows 10 Quality Updates

Windows 10 quality updates are released every month. The Quality updates that provide security and reliability fixes at least once a month to Windows 10 operating system. The quality updates is released on second (2nd) Tuesday of every month (patch Tuesday).

To help you reduce the burden on your network bandwidth, Microsoft designed three different quality update types:

  1. Full Quality updates > Latest Cumilative Update > LCU
  2. Express Quality Updates
  3. Delta Quality Updates

More details about Full, Express, and Delta quality updates are available here.

Windows 10 Quality Updates Security

Windows 10 Quality Update or Feature Update is Critical for your Business?

Let me ask you a question before answering whether quality or feature update is critical for your organization. Do you think security updates are critical than OS upgrade? I think most of you will agree that security updates are critical than OS upgrade. Do you agree?

If so, that is the simple logic about the criticality of Windows 10 quality updates and Feature updates. Windows 10 quality updates are critcal if you comapre it with feature updates. You should not skip quality updates for Windows 10 because that is crucial for your business.

Windows 10 Quality Update = Security Updates = Critical

Windows 10 Feature Update = New Feature Updates = Less Critical

The feature updates provides more features to your operating system but you can delay the feature updates because you are putting your business into risk of a security attack. But on the other hand when you skip a quality update, then you are increasing the risk to business.

[Related Posts – Windows 10 and SCCM Patch Management (Windows 10 Quality Update Managemewnt) process & Intune Quality and Feature Update Policies for Windows 10 devices]

How to Secure Windows 10 with SCCM?

How to secure Windows 10 with SCCM? Paul Winstanley wrote this extensive report for Adaptiva. I won’t call it as report instead, it’s ebook for each SCCM admins. It’s worth downloading this 30-page ebook, if you want to get going on setting up Windows 10 security features with SCCM. Lots of Windows 10 security features are discussed in the “report”.

The Windows security feature 30 page report includes:

  1. Windows Defender
  2. Windows Defender Application Control (WDAC)
  3. Third-party patching
  4. Exploit Guard
  5. Credential Guard
  6. Windows Device Health Attestation

Download the Report:


Windows 10 1809 Security Enhancements and Security Survey –

Windows 10 and SCCM Patch Management  (Windows 10 Quality Update Managemewnt) process –

Quality and Feature Update Policies for Intune Managed Windows 10 devices –

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