Last week, Microsoft released Windows 8.1 Update (1), a mandatory update that makes the Windows 8 experience a bit more tolerable for mouse and keyboard customers. Since then, Microsoft has warned that this update needs to be installed by May 13, the next Patch Tuesday, in order to receive additional security patches from Microsoft.
"Since Microsoft wants to ensure that customers benefit from the best support and servicing experience and to coordinate and simplify servicing across both Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows 8.1 RT and Windows 8.1, this update will be considered a new servicing/support baseline.
"What this means is those users who have elected to install updates manually will have 30 days to install Windows 8.1 Update on Windows 8.1 devices; after this 30-day window - and beginning with the May Patch Tuesday, Windows 8.1 user's devices without the update installed will no longer receive security updates," states a Microsoft engineer.
In other words, starting on patch Tuesday in May 2014 and beyond, Windows 8.1 (and Windows Server 2012) users will require this update to be installed. If the Windows 8.1 Update is not installed, those newer updates will be considered "not applicable."
Note that no other Windows platform has this restriction; users of Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8 will have no problems downloading and installing security fixes on the Patch Tuesday. This new baseline only applies to Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2.
For keyboard and mouse users, Windows 8.1 Update is a must-have despite Microsoft's own push. Simple things like pinning Start Screen apps to the taskbar, the power button on the Start Screen, and options to close and minimize within Start Screen apps makes the experience a lot easier than before.
To see what's new in Windows 8.1 Update, head here.