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How to install Windows 10 October 2018 Update right now

You don't need to wait in line to update your PC to Windows 10 version 1809.

Matt Elliott/CNET

No sooner did the calendar turn to October than Microsoft began rolling out Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1803) to users. The update will introduce a number of new features, including SwiftKey keyboard for touchscreen PCs, a better screenshot tool, the Your Phone app for iPhone ($290 at eBay)- and Android device-wielding PC users and a less annoying approach to restarting your PC to install incremental updates.

To get the update, you need not lift a mousing finger. Microsoft says the update will arrive automatically via Windows Update. You may not get it right away; as with past updates, the company will gradually roll it out over the next few weeks. According to ZDNet, the update will become more broadly available on Oct. 9, affectionately known as Patch Tuesday. 

Microsoft promises to be less disruptive than with past efforts in scheduling the rebooting and installation process. 

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Back up before upgrading

Before you install any big OS update, it's a good idea to back up your system in case something goes awry during the installation. You can simply upload important files to your preferred cloud service or an external drive. Windows' built-in backup service can be found by going to Settings > Update & Security > Backup.

How to install Windows 10 October 2018 Update now

If you don't want to wait for Microsoft to roll out the update to your PC, you can take the proactive approach of initiating the download yourself. Open Settings and click Update & Security. Make sure you are on the Windows Update page and click the Check for Updates button. After the update finishes downloading, follow the instructions to restart your PC and complete the installation process.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

Originally published on Sept. 6, 2018.
Update, Oct. 2: Added information about the roll out of the final version of Windows 10 October 2018 Update.