Microsoft has announced that it will no longer support the initial release of Windows 8.1 from next month and has urged customers to carry out the update to ensure they have the latest version.
However, last week many customers reported that they were having problems installing the update, especially enterprise users, thanks to a bug which prevents future updates being applied. However, for network administrators, the bug is a relatively simple fix and should be carried out manually.
"We recommend that you suspend deployment of this update in your organisation until we release the update that resolves this issue," advised a post on Technet said.
Those that don’t upgrade to the Windows 8.1 update will not receive support in the form of security patches from next month, in a move that Microsoft claim is a direct response to customer feedback. Those who currently use 8.1 and have automatics updates set up will receive the update without having to take any action.
Those that fail to install the update will from May receive a "not applicable” notification when they attempt to install future updates.
"Since Microsoft wants to ensure that customers benefit from the best support and servicing experience and to coordinate and simplify servicing across both Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows 8.1 RT and Windows 8.1, this update will be considered a new servicing/support baseline," the company said .
"What this means is those users who have elected to install updates manually will have 30 days to install Windows 8.1 Updateon Windows 8.1 devices; after this 30-day window – and beginning with the May Patch Tuesday, Windows 8.1 user's devices without the update installed will no longer receive security updates."
The update package was announced on April 2 2014 and contains a set of security fixes for the OS; those that install the update won’t need to install previous 8.1 updates, as the package is cumulative.
Windows 8 has been something of an all-round disaster for Microsoft and it’s thought that the company is rushing to prepare Windows 9 for release as early as spring next year. However, it could be seen as early as December, in time for the holiday buying rush, if all goes smoothly.
April’s BUILD conference was expected to reveal a release date for Windows 9, but this never emerged and the internet continues to be abuzz with rumours surrounding the release. However, Microsoft did reveal plans to reintroduce the famous start menu to Windows 8 at an unspecified time in the future.