Windows 10 version 21H1 is now available for commercial pre-release validation

Laurent Giret

Windows 10 20h2 New Start Menu

Windows 10 version 21H1, the next version of the desktop OS is now available for commercial customers ahead of its public release later this Spring. Just like Windows 10 version 20H2 before it, 21H1 will be a service-pack-like update that will be installed via an “enablement package” that will activate dormant features in Windows 10 version 2004 or 20H2.

New features in Windows 10 version 21H1 include multi-camera support for Windows Hello, as well as performance improvements for Windows Defender Application Guard. The update is already available for Windows Insiders in the Beta channel, but Microsoft will now IT admins install it on commercial devices through all standard channels.

“We not only want to ensure that you have access to the upcoming Windows 10 feature update payload via any channel you may use today, we also want to enable you to validate with confidence. Therefore, customers in the Windows Insider Program for Business can once again receive Microsoft Support for the Windows 10, version 21H1 build available through WSUS, ISO download, Azure Marketplace, and directly from Windows Update in the Release Preview Channels,” the company said today.

Last year, Microsoft released a big Windows 10 update in the Spring followed by a minor update in the Fall, but the company is expected to do the opposite this year with a more substantial update in the second half of 2021. We don’t have any official details about the “21H2” update so far, though previous reports suggested a big design update for Windows 10 codenamed “Sun Valley.” Windows 10X, a new version of the OS designed for Chromebook-like devices is also expected to ship later this year.