Microsoft has been changing the way in which Windows 10 handles driver updates in recent months. These are monthly cumulative updates that are rolled out for users to ensure the platform is compatible with hardware.

Recent changes have included creating a manual update ability alongside automatic driver updates. In the latest move, Microsoft says it will pause Windows 10 driver updates if OEMs do not submit updates before December 3, 2020.

That means driver updates not approved will not reach users next months. OEMs who miss the deadline will need to wait until January 2021 before submitting again.

Microsoft’s reason for this change is clear. The company wants to avoid any untested updates reaching users. When a driver update is deemed to be important, it will be installed automatically without user permission.

In many cases, untested updates can cause problems in Windows 10. Microsoft wants to mitigate these issues by forcing OEMs to submit their updates for review before rolling them out.

Manual Installs

It is worth remembering this move will only prevent Windows 10 from automatically installing driver updates. Those OEM updates will still exist and users can manually update from the OEM website. For example, if Intel has an update that is not approved by Microsoft, users can still install it from the company’s website.

Importantly, the update will not install without permission.

Back in January, Microsoft announced how Windows now blocks faulty driver updates. Microsoft will target cohorts (specified telemetry data) to gauge the compatibility of a driver with the receiving hardware. This assessment will include checking the cohorts, which a system groups for devices that have the same targeting attributes.