Microsoft engineers explain how to reduce the size of Windows 11 update files

Windows update has always been controversial, such as the size of the update. Internet speeds in different regions of the world are different. For some places with slow Internet speeds, frequent updates with hundreds of megabytes of capacity are a very troublesome thing. Recently, Microsoft’s software engineer Jonathon Ready published an article on the official blog, explaining in detail how Microsoft is working to reduce the size of update downloads.

Steam Deck Windows 11

At present, Microsoft delivers the latest Windows security and user experiences updates monthly. Updates are modular meaning that, regardless of which update you currently have installed, you only need the most recent quality update to get your machine up to date. With the development of Windows security and repair, distributing a large number of updates will consume a lot of network bandwidth, which will make it difficult for users with slower Internet speeds to maintain computer security repair procedures. Therefore, Microsoft has reduced the size of Windows 11 update files by 40% through new compression technology.

Starting from version 1809 of Windows 10, forward and reverse differential compression technology has been used to push updates, which can ensure that the operating system can be restored to its original state during service. Although the forward and reverse differentials are symmetrical, they are characterized by very different contents. Microsoft did not use two-way differential technology, because, in some conversions and patches, the data required for reverse differential may be deleted.

In Windows 11, Microsoft used the method of reverse update data generation to change this process, and finally reduced the size of the Windows 11 update file by 40%. Microsoft has applied for a patent on the reverse update data generation technology on March 12, 2021, and perhaps in the future, Microsoft will also apply this technology to Windows 10 updates.