Microsoft begins sign-off process for the Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Microsoft has officially kicked off the internal sign-off process for the Windows 10 'Anniversary Update', which after several months of development is almost ready for the public. Internal sources have confirmed to me that build 14384 is the first 'release to manufacturing' or RTM candidate build to have been compiled and that we should have a final build ready for the public by the end of next week if everything goes well.
For those who don't know, the sign-off process is a phase of the development cycle where Microsoft compiles "RTM candidate" builds, puts them through some internal tests, and whichever build comes out on top is usually deemed the "final build" or "RTM" (although Microsoft doesn't like using the term "RTM" anymore due to the new Windows as a Service (WaaS) paradigm).
Regardless, the sign-off process can take around a week or so, with a best case scenario being a few days.
With build 14384 being the first RTM candidate (for both PC and mobile), it could, of course, end up being the final build. However, as build 14384 was only flighted internally this morning, it's too early to tell whether said build passed all the tests. We'll keep you updated, but if history is anything to go by, there'll be a few more RTM candidates compiled and tested before a final build is selected.
It's a super awesome time to be a Microsoft fan right now, with the 'Anniversary Update' almost ready for prime-time, Insiders can expect to receive the final bits at least a couple weeks before August 2 to test and submit feedback, making sure the final build is indeed good enough for the public.
Now that the 'Anniversary Update' is pretty much done with development, the focus is fast shifting over to Redstone 2, the next update for Windows 10 set for launch in early 2017. As I reported yesterday, my sources are telling me the latest internal RS2 builds are being compiled in the 148xx range, with plans to get RS2 builds out to Insiders by mid-to-late August at the earliest.
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Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.