What to know about the latest Windows 10 update

The latest major update to Windows 10 (named the Creators Update with the version number of 1703) was released in April, but is still rolling out to users.

If you have Windows 10 and Microsoft thinks your computer is ready, you’ll likely be prompted to review your privacy settings before the update applies. But before you proceed, you might be wondering do you need it or should you do it.

Keep this in mind: though considered a major update in the way it applies, it actually won’t seem major to most users. There are no real changes to the user interface or how you get around Windows. Many users won’t even notice the differences. Things like the talking digital assistant, Cortana, gets new functionality — for instance, the ability for it to set recurring reminders. Improvements to the Edge web browser include better video resolution, an e-reader, and tab saving. There are new Gaming settings and functionality like streaming live to your X-Box friends. There’s also a new Paint 3D app to doodle around with.

So, do you need the update? The answer is, probably not. However, Windows 10 was designed to automatically download and apply updates, so it’s not easy to stop or disable updates like it was in prior Windows versions. But there are ways around this for those totally against the automatic updates.

If your computer originally came with Windows 10, then you’re likely okay to proceed with this latest update. When you’re prompted to review your privacy settings for the update, it will by default allow Windows 10 to share certain info with Microsoft. This includes data like your location, speech recognition, computer diagnostics, and other usage details so Windows, apps and advertisements can be more intelligent. Personally, I don’t see a problem with this. But if you’re highly concerned about your digital privacy, you might want to turn off these settings when you’re prompted to review them.

If your computer originally had Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 and was automatically upgraded to Windows 10 or you did the upgrade yourself, I suggest having a professional do a clean install with the latest Windows 10 update rather than allowing the update to apply like normal.

Back when Windows 10 was originally released, Microsoft suggested or forced an in-place upgrade from Windows 7 and 8. This method sounded good as it was supposed to keep your files and programs, but many times it caused errors and slowness. I was suggesting that a professional should backup your data, wipe the hard drive, do a clean install Windows 10, and put your files and programs back on. It’s a little more of an investment of time, but usually gave better results. So, if this wasn’t done before, I suggest doing it now, especially if you have noticed any sluggishness or other weird behavior.