By - Gregg Keizer

What happened to Windows 10 1909?

Microsoft’s logo may not be Elmer Fudd in a red-and-brown cap, but the company has been vewy, vewy qwiet about the year’s second Windows 10 feature upgrade.

That upgrade – designated, if Microsoft hews to practice, “Windows 10 October 2019 Update” and given the 1909 four-digit yymm nickname – has been tossed down a well, muffled by a pillow, shut up in a basement room. It may be there, but no one’s heard from it.

In the past, Microsoft’s twice-annual feature upgrades have shot for April and October releases (even though numerically named as if they’d made it out in March and September). As one feature upgrade neared release, Microsoft shifted the attention of its Insider participants – the volunteers who test previewed versions of the OS – to the next upgrade.

In 2018, for example, even as Microsoft was wrapping up Windows 10 1803 for an eventual April 30 launch, it offered the 1809 successor on March 7 to Insiders who had opted for the “Skip Ahead” build channel. On May 3, the company began serving 1809’s early code to all Insiders, not just the few who had adopted Skip Ahead.

A year later, there was no sign of that practice. Instead, Microsoft jumped ahead one upgrade, to Windows 10 April 2020 Update, aka 2003. On Feb. 14, Microsoft started seeding the Skip Ahead group with builds from what it called the 20H1, or first half, 2020, development branch. To explain the detour, Microsoft said, “Some things we are working on in 20H1 require a longer lead time.”

Spokespeople also promised that the normal line of succession would somehow be retained. “We will begin releasing 19H2 (second half, 2019) bits to Insiders later this spring after we get 19H1 nearly finished and ready.”