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Win10 Build 10166 Pops Up

Having been distracted by other projects for most of this week, I was pleased to have missed the latest Fast Ring release of Build 10166 by only one day. I got it fired up and running almost immediately: it took less than half an hour, all told, to download and install on my trusty desktop test machine. It’s installing on my Dell Venue 11 Pro 7139 right now, and I sincerely hope it fares better during installation than did Build 10162, which failed when installation was nearly complete because of an unresolved driver error of some kind.

Say hello to Build 10166; it really does look like 10176 is likely to be the source for RTM, at this rate.

So far, I can’t tell much difference among the last four builds, all the way back to 10159. I did notice with 10166 that, for the first time, the build came up without apparently having rolled any of my drivers back to earlier versions. I’m hopeful this means MS has finally added some logic to the install to grab more current drivers from what’s already running if they’re available before overwriting them with some canonical, but outdated, notion of what’s needed during installation. Alas, that’s probably too much to hope for, and it simply means that for once MS’s notions of what drivers are current are in synch with DriverAgent’s ideas on the same topic for my desktop test machine.

I also noticed that the DriverStore folder is staying pretty clean following the OS Upgrade. For some time now, I’ve been seeing duplicated drivers showing up post-installation, about which I can only conjecture that MS had been adding drivers during installation, even if they weren’t needed. After this latest install I found exactly two duplicated Nvidia drivers for my graphics card, and one duplicated RealTek Audio driver. This makes it one of the easiest post-install clean-ups ever, and certainly the best one so far for all the Win10 builds I’ve installed.

The Dell got through the initial installation (download, install prep, file unpack and layout) as far as the first reboot, and then into the Upgrading Windows circular progress bar. I’m going to keep this post open until I can report on the outcome of this first installation attempt. After getting farther on that circular progress bar than on any of the 10162 attempts, the installation on the Dell Venue Pro 11 finished successfully, too. Hopefully, that means MS figured out what was up with the driver problem on the last go-round and managed to fix it as well. Good on them!