Windows 8 Gets A Post-RTM Update To Improve Battery Life, Media Playback And General Compatibility

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Microsoft just announced a post-RTM update for Windows 8 that will bring a number of improvements to the company’s new operating system ahead of its full launch on October 26. This update, which follows a similar update to virtually all of the built-in Windows 8 Metro apps earlier this week, will bring improvements “in broad areas of performance, power management and battery efficiency, media playback, and compatibility.”

As Microsoft’s Steven Sinofsky notes in today’s announcement, Microsoft often shipped similar updates to its OEMs ahead of the launch of a new version of Windows. “We would often create dozens of changes for each OEM for these new PCs. Those changes would be deployed during manufacturing of those PCs and thus would be invisible to customers,” he writes. Most users, however, would only see these updates after Microsoft released the first service pack for any given version of Windows.

This time around, however, Microsoft has decided to build the necessary tools to deliver these “post-RTM” updates to all users long before the release of the first service pack. If you are an MSDN or enterprise customer with Windows 8 already installed on your PC, the so-called “General Availability Cumulative Update” should now be available via Windows Update. Microsoft says these updates will follow the standard Windows Update rhythm (a.k.a. Patch Tuesday), which pushes out new code every second Tuesday of each month.

Here is the full changelog:

Improvements:

  • Increased power efficiency to extend battery life
  • Performance improvements in Windows 8 applications and Start screen
  • Improved audio and video playback in many scenarios
  • Improved application and driver compatibility with Windows 8

Known issues:

  • When you turn a Windows feature on or off, the computer may require a restart. For example, this action may be necessary when you turn Remote Access on or off.