windows 10
Terry Myerson, executive vice president of operating systems at Microsoft, speaks at a media event for new Windows 10-powered products on October 6, 2015 in New York City. The company is planning a new wave of updates for its operating system, which is rumored to offer tighter integration with mobile devices and better data sharing. Andrew Burton/Getty Images

There won't be any new versions of Windows. That's Microsoft's line, and it's sticking to it. But that doesn't mean there aren't any updates coming for Windows 10, and indeed Microsoft intends to update it on a more regular basis from here. But a major update is on the horizon, it's codenamed "Redstone," and it's going to be big.

What's the current status of Redstone?

WinBeta reported on Monday that Redstone started internal development "a few weeks ago." This has been backed up by BuildFeed, which tracks Windows 10 development builds. "RS1" was detected for the first time on Monday.

What will Redstone change?

Brad Sams reported on Monday that Microsoft has not fully settled on the features of Redstone, but that it will be intended as a hub for all the different technologies in your life. Microsoft has taken some steps towards unifying computing devices, with Windows 10 running run-anywhere universal apps and adapting the screen automatically depending on the input. Integrating these devices further is a natural logical step forward.

What will Redstone be called?

It's hard to say for sure. Mary Jo Foey from ZDNet reported in April that Microsoft will not be calling Redstone "Windows 11," and the operating system as a whole is still likely to be known as Windows 10. But what the update itself will be called is unclear. Microsoft has a confusing history of naming conventions for smaller updates: Windows 98 Second Edition was a minor upgrade for Windows 98, while a similar update for Windows 8 was branded as Windows 8.1. Those were both rebranded versions of the system though, and a previous Windows 10 update was simply referred to as "SR1."

How will I install Redstone?

Microsoft has publicly stated its intention to move Windows to a service model, where customers get new features through Windows Update rather than going out to the store and buying a new copy. The company made great changes to the way Windows works to facilitate changes to core components via the update system. Mary Jo Foley reported in April that delivering the update as a regular Windows Update is indeed the plan.

Is Redstone the only update coming?

No. The Verge reported in July on a smaller update coming before this, which will feature among other things a new messaging app with Skype support and extensions for Microsoft Edge. Microsoft has publicly referenced this update in the past. WinBeta states it is scheduled to arrive in a few weeks time. This update is codenamed "Threshold 2," a reference to Windows 10's codename "Threshold." Threshold 2 has been detected by BuildFeed since April.

When will Redstone launch?

According to Brad Sams, Redstone will launch in two parts. "Redstone 1" (which sounds similar to the RS1 detected by BuildFeed) will launch in June 2016, while "Redstone 2" is set to arrive around October or November of that same year. With the initial Windows 10 launch known as Threshold and the next update known as Threshold 2, it's useful to consider "Threshold" as the name of the first wave of Windows 10 updates, and "Redstone" as the name of the second wave.