Microsoft's Insider Program has become more complex and more convoluted as of late, with the Slow ring in particular becoming a lot less active than it used to be. If you're on the Slow ring and are wondering when you might finally receive a new build, you're in for a little more disappointment.
After the company's Brandon LeBlanc suggested the software giant had a candidate for the Slow ring in mind earlier this month, Insider head Dona Sarkar has now shed some light on why it still hasn't been released to Insiders. Sarkar explains that Slow ring builds are being delayed due to an issue with anti-cheat protections for games, which are resulting in a Green Screen Of Death (GSOD).
(1/2)Many of you are asking why we haven't released a #SlowRing flight in a while. We have a GSOD that's caused by a very common scenario around gaming anti-cheat codes. Unfortunately the fix is in the hands of our 3rd party partner company that we're working with them on...— Dona Sarkar (@donasarkar) February 25, 2019
Since Microsoft's metrics suggest that a large number of those on the Slow ring are prolific gamers, and the company wishes to maintain high standards for the builds it releases, it's staying its hand for now till the issue is resolved.
Making matters worse is the fact that a fix is not in Microsoft's hands. Sarkar clarified that a fix needs to be implemented by Microsoft's third-party partners, and while the Windows maker is collaborating on a fix, it remains to be seen just when it will actually be implemented so that Slow ring Insiders can finally get some fresh code sent their way.
The larger problem here seems to be that this isn't an isolated case. As the Insider Program has grown and evolved, the Slow ring has become quite the distant priority for Microsoft, as our Rich Woods pointed out last year. Far from the monthly release cadence Microsoft is supposed to follow, the last build flighted to the Slow ring was back in October, more than four months ago. The company even chose to forego the Release Preview ring entirely for the October 2018 Update, leading to disastrous results and serving as yet another reminder that the Insider Program may be in need of some maintenance.