Windows 10 May 2020 update is here — how to get it right now

Windows 10
(Image credit: ymgerman / Shutterstock)

Microsoft is rolling out the Windows 10 May 2020 update, which brings a suite of new features to the operating system to make life easier and more secure for users. 

Officially known as Windows 10 version 2004, the update brings in enhanced search functionality, an all-new File Explorer, and support for Wi-Fi 6 and the WPA3 protocol. Enhanced support for password-less login has also been added and now allows for Windows Hello biometric security to be used by different users to login to their Microsoft accounts and even works when WIndows 10 is booted in its safe mode.

Other updates include improvements to the Windows Sandbox, which allows users to launch a virtual machine that runs a stripped-down version of Windows 10. That’s useful for app developers who want to test their software in an isolated Windows 10 environment. 

For people who want to keep a close eye on the performance of their Windows 10 desktop pr PC, the May update now allows the Task Manager to show graphic card temperatures, as well as better identify multiple storage drives. 

For PC gamers, the inclusion of DirectX 12 Ultimate editions should deliver smoother graphics and better details without sacrificing framerate, according to Microsoft. And the Xbox Game Bar also supports third-party widgets to enhance the overall native Microsoft gaming experience on Windows 10, which should be handy if you are an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscriber. 

Cortana has also been given a nip and a tuck, with the virtual assistant now sportsinga chat-based user interface so you can type or speak requests at it in natural language. And there have been a number of other tweaks to Windows 10, including making the Edge browser less of a memory hog and adding some improvements to the venerable Notepad app. 

How to get the Windows 10 May 2020 update 

If you don't need the Windows 10 May 2020 update immediately, you can simply wait until it's pushed put to your desktop or laptop in the coming weeks. Microsoft said it’s increasing the availability of the update worldwide, but if you want it earlier you can force Windows 10 to go on the hunt for the update. Here's how:

1. Open Windows Settings and select 'Update & Security.'

(Image credit: Microsoft)

2. Select 'Windows Update.'

(Image credit: Microsoft)

3. Once there, click on the ‘check for updates’ option.

4. Click on ‘download and install’ and the update should just do that.  

(Image credit: Microsoft)

If the update doesn’t appear, it means availability hasn’t reached where you are. But it should arrive in the coming weeks as Microsoft increases the rollout process. 

If you are trying to force the update, it’s a good idea to ensure your machine or the important files on it are backed up, just in case the update causes unexpected problems.  

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.