Update: Microsoft may have officially launched the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, but rollout is painfully slow and may not be finished until November. Want to get it today? Here's how to download and install the latest version of Windows 10 right now – plus what you need to know rolling back to Windows 7 or WIndows 8.1
In August 2016, Microsoft celebrated its newest, and possibly last, operating system turning a year old by releasing a super-sized patch chock full of intriguing new features.
However, due to a range of factors including compatibility, design and configuration issues, Microsoft is staggering rollout of the update – and it's now been revealed that you may not be prompted to upgrade until November. Which is all a bit ironic, given how aggressively Microsoft 'encouraged' users to enable auto-update on their devices.
Still, if you just can't wait to get your hands on the Anniversary Update, there's a pretty simple way to force it to install on your computer. Just head to the Windows 10 update tool page and follow the instructions. You'll basically create an ISO file, or disk image, or Windows 10 which you can then install on your PC.
That's the good news. The bad news is that Microsoft has made it less easy to roll back to its older operating systems if you don't like Windows 10, namely Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.
Previously, Microsoft offered you the ability to roll back to your last OS at any time, but you now have to make that choice within 10 days or be stuck with Windows 10 forever.
Frankly, that's not a whole lot of time to get to grips with a new operating system, especially if you're crossing over from the radically different Windows 7 – Windows 8.1 users should more or less know what to expect.
While we've now covered all the latest Windows 10 news and Anniversary Update developments, if you're still unclear on anything, here's our full guide to downloading Windows 10.
How to download the Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Before we go into more detail, a couple of caveats.
Firstly, if you didn't plump for Microsoft's offer to upgrade to Windows 10 for free, you're bang out of luck – or rather, £100 out of pocket, as that's how much it now costs to buy a Windows 10 Home license. In other words, if you're on Windows 8.1 or older, you won't get the upgrade. There is a workaround that lets you still get Windows 10 for free, but you'll find a lump of coal in your stocking come Christmas if you opt for it.
Second, you need to ensure your system is compatible with the Anniversary Update. Your device will need at least 2GB of RAM (not the 1GB Windows 10 required) and a minimum hard drive capacity of 16GB. On the plus side, you can now get the desktop version on devices as small as 7-inches, and the mobile version will support devices up to 9-inches.
Meet the pesky system requirements? OK, you're set. Here's what you need to do.
If you enabled automatic Windows 10 updates, you should be prompted to make the leap to the Anniversary Update as soon as it's available for your machine. Which is all well and good, but many of you probably disabled automatic Windows 10 updates because they were, well, really quite annoying.
If that's the case, you can check if it's ready and manually install it by heading to the Start menu, then navigating to Settings > Update and security > Check for updates.
As soon as Microsoft makes it available for your computer, you'll then be able to click to download the Anniversary Update. If that hasn't happened, you can either wait (Microsoft has said it expects to complete rollout by early-November) or force the update by using the Windows 10 media creation tool, as we outlined above.
Should I download the Anniversary Update?
That's the big question. TrustedReviews Computing Editor Michael Passingham offers the following insight:
"By itself, the Anniversary Update doesn't add up to a huge amount. They're small tweaks that'll make life easier for some, but they're not going to be enough to entice a stubborn non-upgrader to take the plunge.
"What you should do is look at the wider context: Microsoft is actively adding entirely new features to its showpiece operating system, something that will never happen again for Windows 7 or 8.
"Future updates could be much bigger and contain even more useful additions, and if you don't upgrade now, you will have to pay if the time comes when Windows 10 convinces you it's good enough for your beloved PC."Related: Windows 10 vs Windows 7
Watch: What's new in Windows 10?
What do you think of the Anniversary Update? Let us know in the comments below.