Microsoft released Windows 10 May 2021, 21H1 Update: Deprecated or removed features outnumber new ones?

Windows 10 May 2021 21H1 Update
The 21H1 Update is the ‘Small’ one. Pic credit: Christiaan Colen/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

Microsoft has released the first, large, Cumulative Feature Update of 2021 for Windows 10. The May 2021 Update, also known as the 21H1 update, appears to be a “spring cleaning” process.

Microsoft seldom promoted or talked extensively about the May 2021 update or 21H1 Cumulative Feature Update for Windows 10. It seems the company was attempting to downplay the significance of the update, which should pave a way for the eagerly anticipated and feature-packed Sun Valley 21H2 update.

Microsoft goes ‘Small’ with the May 2021 update or 21H1 Cumulative Feature Update for Windows 10

Microsoft has been following a “Big and Small” approach for its biannual Cumulative Feature Updates for quite some time. The company usually sends one big update which contains a lot of features and functions.

The Sun Valley update or the 21H2 update is a big update. Microsoft has been experimenting with a lot of features that could make their way into the update.

Hence, the May 2021 update or 21H1 Cumulative Feature Update for Windows 10 is a small update. The update started arriving yesterday, Tuesday, May 18, 2021.

The May 2021 update does have some features. However, they are majorly beneficial for the IT professionals, indicated Microsoft.

“Windows 10, version 21H1 is a scoped set of features for select performance improvements, enterprise features, and quality enhancements. As an H1-targeted release, 21H1 is serviced for 18 months from the release date for devices running Windows 10 Enterprise or Windows 10 Education editions.”

Microsoft removes and deprecates some features with the May 2021, 21H1 Update:

While the Sun Valley or 21H2 Update should add a lot of features, the May 2021 or 21H1 Update is actually removing or deprecating features.

Here are some of the features that Microsoft has removed from Windows 10 in 21H1 Update:

  • XDDM-Based Remote Display Driver: Microsoft is removing support for Windows 2000 Display Driver Model (XDDM) -based remote display drivers. Independent software vendors using an XDDM-based remote display driver should plan to migrate to the WDDM driver model.
  • Microsoft Edge: Microsoft will end support for the legacy version of Microsoft Edge from March 9, 2021. See End of Support Reminder for Microsoft Edge Legacy for more information.

There are a few “abandoned” functions that might disappear in later updates:

There are also features that Microsoft is no longer developing. These are still available in Windows10. However, the company would most likely eliminate them in the near future.

  • Personalization Roaming: Microsoft is no longer developing the Roaming of personalization settings (including wallpaper, slideshow, accent colors, and lock screen images). The company could remove the same in a future release.
  • Windows Management Instrumentation Command-Line (WMIC) Tool: The WMIC tool is deprecated in Windows 10, version 21H1 and the semi-annual channel release 21H1 of Windows Server. Windows PowerShell for WMI supersedes this tool Note: This rating only applies to the command line administration tool and does not affect WMI itself.
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