Windows 10 Redstone: Major Update Due Summer 2016

John Lister's picture

Microsoft has unveiled some of the features for the next major update to Windows 10. Among the biggest surprise is better support for the world of Linux.

The new features and tweaks will come in an update that's been codenamed Windows 10 Redstone. It's expected some time this summer and is planned to be the biggest update yet.

Microsoft has likened Redstone to the level of change that came with Windows 8.1, though thankfully this time it will be less about undoing changes in the initial release that went down badly.

Cortana & Action Center Overhauled

The most visible changes for users will be to Cortana, the voice controlled 'virtual assistant' and to Action Center, the feature that houses most key settings and notifications. They'll change in two ways.

Firstly, both will now display information through interactive "cards" which look the same for both Cortana and Action Center. It's a setup that will be familiar to anyone who has used Google Now on an Android device and is designed to make it easier to keep track of multiple sources of information. Unconfirmed reports say it may be possible to better organize these cards, for example by keeping all notifications from social media together.

The second change is that Cortana and Action Center will now integrate with each other. That should mean less redundant repetition of details and more useful information in both. (Source:

More Support For Touchscreens

The update will also boost Windows Ink, a tool for touchscreen devices that supports both finger presses and digital pens. It will now integrate better with other applications. For example, when you write a note to yourself that says you need to go to a mall tomorrow, Windows can add the note to the correct date on Cortana's calendar feature and then use Bing to work out which mall you likely mean (based on your location) and prepare driving directions.

There'll also be support for Linux applications through something called a Bash shell. In simple terms that means users will be able to run Linux through a command line in which you type text commands rather than clicking icons and menus with a mouse.

While the tool won't be of much use to the average PC owner, it means tech enthusiasts and developers will be able to work on Linux using a Windows 10 PC without using workaround techniques that consume a lot of resources. If nothing else, it's a symbolic moment to see Microsoft support open source software in such an explicit manner. (Source:

What's Your Opinion?

Do any of these new features interest you? Is Microsoft paying too much attention to touchscreens and tech-heads rather than average consumers? What new features or tweaks would you like to see in future updates.

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Dennis Faas's picture

I for one am looking very forward to the integrated Bash shell. From using Linux on a daily basis, I can tell you that there are some incredibly useful command line tools (such as grep, ps, sed, top, find, etc) that make life a lot easier using Linux compared to Windows. With the integration that means I'll be less likely to need to use a Linux virtual machine to perform certain tasks.

gi7omy's picture

I'd be a bit worried over MS doing things with the Bourne Again SHell really. I like Linux but I'd never let Windows touch it (I multi-boot with Gentoo on a separate drive).

BASH is open source but I can't see MS putting anything back into the community once they start tweaking it. ps in windows would be superflous. It will just list open and running apps and to stop them you have to then enter ''kill <appnumber>' (or if it's persistent 'kill -9'. Task Manager in Doze lets you do that without having to know the process number already. 'find' - well 'find -iname' will wok but it's case sensitive (unlike windows search). It's only real advantage over Windows search is the ability to use wildcards in any part of the name.

In short, like the curate's egg, 'good in parts'

Doccus's picture

It really looks to me like M$ is following the direction established by Apple back in.. heck .. i don't know , wayy back when.. but most certainly since the introduction of OSX .. when each new OS was simply a fine tuning of the previous one with a few new significant features. Sadly Apple has dropped that policy.. instead removing features with every new release .. and introducing (IMHO) completely worthless ones. OK I get it.. they don't care about their desktop division, and would dump it, I am sure, if they could, for only iDevices..
Well hey.. I am, along with a significant other number of other disgruntled Apple users, using Windows more than ever, thanks to Apple. Maybe M$ should place a thank you ad to Apple in the media?

Navy vet's picture

I have grown to dread any updates from Microsoft,even minor ones. The last one came a day or so ago and changed my default browser from Firefox to Edge. I know how to change it back either from the Control Panel or the Action Center. The settings would not stay. I spent an hour searching the web for a solution and finally found a registry edit that so far seems to work. Microsoft needs to stop trying to be all things to all users. There always seems to be some sort of problem with their updates. I expect this Redstone update to be a real nightmare for the average user and even some tech savvy users and involve hours of wasted time straightening stuff out. Microsoft, fix your update process!

nospam_5346's picture

This disturbs me in that I turned off Cortana and disabled anything Bing that I could. While I don't use my Windows 10 for anything, I plan to rename the Cortana folder to disable it completely when I do. Will that still be possible with its integration with the Action Center?

I can see no use for Cortana on a desktop (and due to its tracking features no use for it at all) and I dislike Bing.

Why can't we just have an operating system? Make all of these "features" modules to be loaded or not as the user wants. Why force all of these things on users who don't want them?

We need less integration and more choice.

ecash's picture

I like Linux, as a tool and add what you want and need..
Windows is going HOG, on us again.
WHY add features, we may not want or need..GIVE US THE OPTION...dont just LOAD the system up with MORE STUFF..

Keep it clean and simple, lets us ADD what we want.
the only reasoning for Over loading the OS, tends to be to HIDE things all over the place, as ADOBE has done..

gi7omy's picture

I've been thinking more about the announcement on bash and I wonder just how MS had an 'agreement' with Canonical over its use. Canonical didn't hold and never did hold the 'rights' to any of the OSF software and bash is very definitely under the GPL.

I wonder if SCO will now turn what remains of their guns on Redmond seeing that claim to own 'copyright' on almost all the source code? LOL