Microsoft Won’t Support Intel Cannonlake and Coffee Lake CPUs in Windows 10 LTSB

Microsoft’s current version of Windows 10 LTSB (Long-Term Servicing Branch) will not support the next generation Intel Cannonlake and Coffee Lake core processors. Users running these CPUs will need to have a regular current branch (CB) Windows 10 version.

Next Version of Windows 10 LTSB Planned for 2019; New Drivers Are Not Sufficient

The next update of Windows 10 LTSB is scheduled for 2019. By then, Intel should have released its new Cannonlake and Coffee Lake CPU architectures as per the company’s roadmap, but there will be no support for the next-gen processors. Users of the current LTSB build 1607 who want support for the upcoming Intel CPUs will require regular retail and business versions of the Windows 10 OS.

According to Michael Niehaus, Director of Product Marketing at Microsoft, Redmond is aware of the issue, but the official support for new CPUs and chipsets is offered via a new version of Windows, and the same is true for LTSB versions. Niehaus said the problem is being discussed internally and also with Nvidia, but he can’t give any details on a possible solution, since the CPUs are not available yet.

“In the past you only needed new drivers to support new CPUs and chipsets, however nowadays chipsets need specific setting in the operating system to work with reasonable performance and battery life,” Niehaus told Heise.de.

For those who don’t know, the Windows 10 LTSB version is designed to provide long-term support for hardware and software. It receives security updates and bug fixes, but doesn’t get any new features, including support for newer hardware. Normally, Microsoft releases new LTSB versions every couple of years, however the company also released an update for together with the Anniversary Update.

Intel Cannonlake and Coffee Lake CPUs Only a Year Away

As for the next-gen Intel CPUs, a roadmap leaked earlier reveals that Cannonlake would be available in late 2017. Based on the 10nm process technology, this new family of CPUs will launch in two variants initially, the Y and U-series chips, both featuring two core modules and GT2 graphics. They will only differ in clock speeds and TDPs.

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Following 10nm Cannonlake, Intel plans to extend the 14nm process to at least one more family, and that family will be known as Coffee Lake. It will use the fine-tuned 14nm process and co-exist with Cannonlake processors when launched in Q2 2018. Coffee Lake will be available in two variants: the H-series chips features up to six cores and GT3e graphics and the U-series lineup features two cores with GT3e graphics.