Microsoft has shipped a lot of updates for Windows this month, and when I say a lot, I really mean it. The company originally published emergency updates in early January to address the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, only to have them suspended, and then re-issued due to problems on AMD chips.

Leaving this entire fiasco aside, a surprising new update for Windows 10 showed up today with very little information provided to users.

KB4056254 is a patch released on January 24, according to Microsoft’s official KB page, and which is labeled as “Windows 10 update facilitation service.”

The company provides only a short description of the update, so it’s not surprising that many users are confused on its actual purpose, especially because it doesn’t land as part of a typical update cycle:

  This update includes a background service for update facilitation in Windows 10 Version 1507 and later versions (build 10240 and later builds). This update includes files and resources that make sure that operating system updates are installed seamlessly and that improve the reliability and security of Windows 10.  

All Windows 10 versions getting it

In other words, this is an update that updates Windows Update. Does that make any sense? If not, here’s the deal.

Every once in a while, Microsoft delivers improvements for the Windows Update service in order to address bugs and prepare for bigger releases, as it’s the case of new Windows 10 versions. Such updates are more often spotted ahead of public launch of major Windows 10 builds like the Fall Creators Update, but in this case, it could be related to the way security updates are being shipped.

Microsoft says the update is aimed at Windows 10 build 10240 and later, and given this is actually the original version of the OS launched in Jul 2015, it means all Windows 10 versions are getting the patch.

We’ve reached out to Microsoft to see if more information on the update is available and we’ll post a follow-up if a worthy answer is offered.

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