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Windows 10's final build number is delightfully clever

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Microsoft has always tried to pick special numbers with meaning for the release to manufacturing of most major versions of Windows. Windows 95 used 4.00.950, Windows 98 used 4.10.1998, Windows Vista rounded off to 6.0.6000, and Windows XP settled on 5.1.2600 (a reference to the hacker magazine). While Microsoft engineers wanted to use 8888 for Windows 8, a new requirement introduced with Vista meant the final build number of any version of Windows must be a multiple of 16. That messed up the cute numbering scheme for Windows 8, but it’s almost perfect for Windows 10.

Read next: Our review of Windows 10.

Microsoft has picked 10240 as the final build of Windows 10. At first glance it might not seem particularly interesting or relevant to Windows 10, but dig a little deeper and it’s math magic. Back in days before we even used to use floppy disks, the kilo prefix used to mean 1024 for the computer industry, so 1024 kilobytes would be 1 megabyte. These days the industry refers to 1000 kilobytes as 1 megabyte, but that’s not stopping Microsoft from reminiscing. 10240 kilobytes translates to 10 megabytes (using kilo as 1024), and you can have even more fun if you drop the trailing zero and focus on just the 1024 part of the build number. If you find any more examples where Microsoft is hinting at the number 10 in its final build number then feel free to drop them into the comments below and we’ll add them to the list.

  • 10240 kilobytes = 10 megabytes (where kilo is 1024)
  • 2^10 x 10 = 10240
  • 1024 is an approximation of 1000
  • 1024 represented as binary is 10000000000
  • 10240 represented as binary is 10100000000000
  • 10240 bits = 10 Kibibits
  • 10240 bytes = 10 Kibibytes

Verge Video: Windows 10 build 10056 on a tablet