Microsoft has invested a lot on AI and machine learning; however, it doesn’t get much attention like Google. Now Microsoft is using its machine learning technology to solve an issue which all Window users have experienced: faulty updates. The tech giant says AI can help identify systems which will play nicely with updates, thus it can roll out new versions more quickly with less crashes.
Anytime there is a Windows update, we hear stories of how it completely disabled the system. It’s not easy for Microsoft as the windows ecosystem is super complex with countless hardware variants. Microsoft started to use AI to assess computers with Windows 10, version 1803. It measured six PC health stats, assessed update results and fed all the data into a machine learning algorithm. This informs Microsoft which computers have the least chance to face problems with future updates.
Microsoft can push new features to most users in a short time by starting with computers with the “best” update compatibility. During OS rollouts, things tend to move quite slowly at first while companies stay alert for problems. PCs identified to have possible issues by the AI will be updated later on while Microsoft finds the bugs.
The first deployment using AI was successful, with adoption rates higher than all earlier Windows 10 updates. Microsoft expanded its initial six PC metrics to 35 as of the Windows 1903 rollout. The company says this can make update targeting more accurate. However, perfect updates is not guaranteed. Microsoft blog post talks about 1809 update from late 2018 which used AI technology. You might remember the widespread file deletion bug for which Microsoft had to pause the release. AI can help determine compatibility, however, it can’t detect unknown bugs.
Yet, Microsoft is satisfied with the results from its machine learning deployments. The new blog post says that systems selected for updates by the algorithm have less than half as many system uninstalls, half as many kernel-mode crashes, and one-fifth as many post-update driver issues. Hopefully in the future, you can expect fewer Windows update issues thanks to AI.