Windows 11 23H2 “Windows 11 2023 Update” has finally arrived, showcasing new AI features like Copilot and Cocreator in Paint, ungrouping for the taskbar, modern File Explorer and more. This Windows update’s features were previously rolled out to users with Windows 11 Moment 4 in stages, and now they’re available for everyone.
- Windows 11 2023 Update doesn’t change hardware requirements and works with existing apps, services, and drivers. It’s an enablement package for version 22H2, so both versions will receive the same updates.
- Users can manually download the update through Settings, and businesses can use options like Windows Update for Business. The update process is expected to take around 5-10 minutes.
- The update extends support: Windows 11 Home, Pro, and other consumer editions until October 2025 and Enterprise and Education editions until October 2026. Microsoft plans to upgrade devices to this new version eventually.
Windows 11 2023 Update marks an important shift for Microsoft and is believed to be the last major release for the operating system ahead of Windows 12’s long-rumoured launch in the fall of 2024.
Microsoft started rolling out Windows 11 23H2 to testers in the Release Preview channel in September, and it’s finally ‘ready’ for the consumers.
TDLR: what’s changing?
- What is this update? Windows 11 2023 Update is the second major feature update.
- When is it rolling out? Released on October 31 2023 as an optional update.
- Is it a forced upgrade? 23H2 remains an optional update, but Microsoft plans to auto-upgrade PCs in the coming months.
Since Windows 11 2023 Update is an enablement package for version 22H2, there are no changes to the hardware requirements. This means existing apps, services, and drivers will continue to work. The servicing branch is also shared, which means the same cumulative updates will work on both versions.
“We will deliver this feature update using servicing technology,” writes John Cable, Microsoft VP for Windows Servicing and Delivery.
As shown in the above screenshot, if you’re interested in the Windows 11 23H2 update, you can head to Settings > Windows Update, enable the enablement package switch “Get the latest updates as soon as they’re available”, and select ‘Check for updates’.
Once clicked, it would take five to ten minutes, and the update will be ready for installation.
On enterprise and commercial devices, you can use the following methods to get the update:
- Windows Update for Business (WUfB).
- Windows Server Update Service (WSUS)
- Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC).
Windows 11 2023 Update is currently available for manual download, i.e., via the “Get the latest updates as soon as they’re available” toggle in Settings. However, this could change later this year or early next year when the update will be automatically installed on systems.
Windows 11 2023 Update extends support cycle
Based on the previous lifecycle of Windows Update, the support lifecycle of this version would be as follows:
- Windows 11 Home, Pro, Pro Education, and Pro for Workstations editions would be supported until October 2025, 24 months after the release date.
- Windows 11 Enterprise and Education editions would be supported until October 2026, 36 months after the release date.
Microsoft officials confirmed it plans to force upgrade devices to this new version of the operating system, which will be supported longer than the existing version 22H2. For those unaware, Windows 11 22H2 consumer editions will be serviced until October 8, 2024, so users have less than a year to upgrade.
What’s new in the update?
Windows 11 2023 Update has many features if you haven’t installed Windows 11 Moment 4 update.
The list of new features in the OS includes Windows Copilot, Dynamic Lighting, labels and ungrouping for the taskbar, an improved Spotlight experience, and more.
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