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Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

It’s that time of the year again. Microsoft have released their spring update and the first IT-Pro’s are getting ready to move their VDI environment over.

Naturally, most people are not moving to the latest bits as far as Microsoft pushes them. A recent study by VDI Like a Pro shows that almost 30% are currently running Windows 10 1803 & 1809 - and I’m confident the largest part will be 1803. For the 21% of you that are still running Windows 7 VDI’s: The end is near, as end of support is scheduled for January 2020.

Login VSI Blog - Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

Ever since the first VDI environments have been out there, Login VSI has always published information on the performance impact of these planned changes and while Windows 10 was off to a good start with the first few updates, I’m getting more worried about the latest ones.

So why is the operating system becoming “slower” with every release? The answer is surprisingly simple: it packs more features. These internally consist of services, scheduled tasks, background processes, notifications, etc. And while it might not be so bad to see an increased CPU utilization on a fat-client workstation with just one user, the game changes if there are 100 desktops that now utilize 1% more CPU on the same hardware. Some of these features for 1903 include the Emoji keyboard (very important! 😍), Biometrics for Remote Desktops and an updated version of SetupDiag.

Login VSI Blog - Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

The Numbers

To validate this update Josh Kennedy went into our Cisco Hyperflex lab and ran through 3 test scenario’s all with the industry-standard Login VSI Knowledge Worker workload:

  • Windows 10 – 1803
  • Windows 10 – 1809
  • Windows 10 – 1903

From the last two images, we removed OneDrive as we’ve seen that running OneDrive in a stateless desktop wherein it’s not configured (we are not using it during our tests) causes for excessive CPU Utilization. In addition to that, we’ve run a default analyze/optimize with VMware’s Operating System Optimization Toolkit.

Login VSI Blog - Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

It’s quite a shock to see how much these standard updates can influence the scalability of your system and remember nothing is exciting on these boxes: No workspace managers, no anti-virus just plain vanilla Windows 10 boxes. In the image below we can see how the Logon Times are impacted. For 1803/1809 they are quite similar, however, with 1903 at a much lower number of users the logon times have already increased significantly.

Login VSI Blog - Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

I am quite excited to see that many of you are already testing the upgrades of Windows 10 before you go live, I think this should be an ongoing process where we can learn a lot from the continuous testing that’s done in software development nowadays. If you could embed these tests into your change management processes and validate every change before you put it live, why wouldn’t you, right?

Login VSI Blog - Updating to Windows 10 1903? Make Sure to Test!

If you’d like to know more about this topic below there’s a webinar recorded recently wherein, I run through the same results with a little more background story around it.

You can learn more about this webinar HERE.

A silver lining to all of this is the recent acquisition of FSLogix, while the technology is a nice addition to the operating system I’m even more excited about all the VDI experts suddenly working for Microsoft. These guys understand the challenges of centralized desktop workloads and are giving feedback to all the development teams internally at Microsoft.



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About the company Login VSI

The company Login VSI provides end-user performance insights for virtualized desktop and server-based computing environments. Enterprise IT departments use flagship product Login VSI (for load testing) and Login PI (for continuity testing) in all phases of their virtual desktop deployment—from planning to deployment to change management—to build and safeguard a good performance, a high availability, and (as a result) a good and consistent end-user experience. For more information about Login VSI or for a free test license contact us.

About the author

Mark Plettenberg (@markplettenberg) is a product manager of Login VSI and has played a critical role in the development and growth of Login VSI. Ask Mark about motorcycle mechanics and breaking/repairing anything and everything that has a power plug.

Tags: Microsoft, Windows, VDIenvironments, Blog, W10

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