Microsoft has begun sending out a new batch of microcode updates for Windows 10. These are specifically intended for computers running Intel processors. They are supposed to mitigate the security risks from newly discovered vulnerabilities inside Intel processors. Additionally, the company is also sending out a ‘Compatibility Update’ which appears to be yet another attempt to ensure smooth upgrade of Windows installations to the latest feature update.
Multiple iterations of Windows 10 OS are receiving Intel microcode updates from Microsoft. These miniature updates are intended to safeguard computers from possible exploitations of security vulnerabilities inside Intel processors and hardware. There are quite a few security bugs or loopholes that Intel discovers and develops patches that plug the same. It is important to note that Microsoft is issuing these Microcode Patches for Intel hardware running Windows 10.
Microsoft Releases Significant Microcode Patches For Windows 10 Running On Intel Hardware:
Microsoft has started rolling out a new batch of microcode updates for Windows 10. These patches will reportedly help mitigate against the new security vulnerability in Intel processors. Microsoft has indicated the Intel microcode updates will download and install automatically via Windows Update when necessary and if the target device is supported. In other words, these are mandatory security updates that do not require any user intervention and cannot be paused or postponed.
Microsoft first released Intel’s microcode updates to Windows 10 users back in March 2018. Needless to mention, these were meant to improve the security of computers using Intel hardware. The microcode patch updates also offered fixes for devices that should have received CPU patches from hardware manufacturers. In other words, these patches should technically be issued by hardware vendors, which in this case is Intel.
Users running the latest version of Windows 10, which is v2004, 20H1, or May 2020 Update, should be receiving KB4558130 update in the next few days. Those running slightly older versions of Windows 10, namely version 1909 or 1903, should receive KB4497165 instead. Incidentally, these microcode patches or security updates go all the way back to version 1607. In other words, all the versions of Windows 10, possibly running on computers today, will receive the Security Microcode Patches. Here’s the complete list of the microcode updates for all versions of Windows 10.
- KB4494174 for version 1809.
- KB4494451 for version 1803.
- KB4494452 for version 1709.
- KB4494453 for version 1703.
- KB4494175 for version 1607.
- KB4494454 for other versions of Windows 10.
Should Windows 10 OS Users Be Cautious About The Security Microcode Patches?
It is truly commendable to see such Security Microcode Patches being issued by Microsoft, the maker of Windows 10 OS. However, there have been quite a few reported incidents about these patches causing stability issues with some older processors in the past. The most notable issue was the weird and random Windows reboot.
Hence it is important to note that Windows 10 OS users must not intervene with any of such updates. These Security Microcode Patches will arrive, download and install automatically. In other words, users must not attempt to force a manual installation, even if the device is compatible with the patches or qualifies to receive them.
Microsoft Issues ‘Compatibility Update’ To Ensure Smooth Upgrade To Windows 10 Latest Feature Update?
In addition to the microcode security patches, Microsoft has also started rolling out another “compatibility update” for Windows 10. The purpose of the update remains unclear. However, Microsoft insists the update would make improvements to ease the upgrade experience.
The Compatibility Update is identified as KB4577588 and may appear inside Windows Update on some devices. Interestingly, just like the security updates, the KB4577588 too will be downloaded and installed automatically when Microsoft believes the device is ready. It is quite likely the KB4577588 Compatibility Update attempts to prepare the target Windows 10 PC for both May 2020 Update and future releases, such as version 20H2.