We have an Active Directory-based LAN, with Windows 10 clients version 21H1. AD is Server 2019-based. Having recently migrated this network from Server 2003, I'm still trying to get the hang of how things work. I'm overenjoyed by what I can do with ADM(X) templates in my group policies, however I'm not sure on how I should include newer Windows 10 templates on my servers.

So far I have created a central store under SYSVOL as per the instructions in https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/troubleshoot/windows-client/group-policy/create-and-manage-central-store

Seems to work like a charm. However, there are certain features of 21H1 that I can not control via GPOs (for example, the news app) since there are no templates on server 2019 that correspond to the newer Windows 10 versions' features.

My question is which is the more safe/robust way to be able to "view" and control via GPOs new Windows versions' features?

I figure there might be two approaches here:

Approach 1: According to the link above, an approach one might follow is to first copy the \Windows\PolicyDefinitions directory from a 21H1 Windows 10 installation (which holds the 21H1-updated templates) to the domain SYSVOL with a different name, say PolicyDefinitions-21H1 (since a PolicyDefinitions directory already exists). Till this point I understand things clearly. It's the next steps that got me lost:

[...] When you have copied all .admx and .adml files, the PolicyDefinitions folder on the domain controller should contain the .admx files and one or more folders that contain language-specific .adml files.


When you copy the .admx and .adml files from a Windows 8.1-based or Windows 10-based computer, verify that the most recent updates to these files are installed. Also, make sure that the most recent Administrative Templates files are replicated. This advice also applies to service packs, as applicable.

When the operating system collection is completed, merge any OS extension or application ADMX/ADML files into the new PolicyDefinitions folder.

When this is finished, rename the current PolicyDefinitions folder to reflect that it's the previous version, such as PolicyDefinitions-1709. Then, rename the new folder (such as PolicyDefinitions-1803) to the production name.

Could comeone elaborate on what exactly I should do here, in (more newbie-friendly) English? My current PolicyDefinitions in SYSVOL contains the server 2019 adm/admx/adml files, plus some templates I've included for Mozilla Firefox.

Approach 2: download and install the 21H1 admx bundle (available in MSI format from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/103124) directly on the 2019 server. But I'm not certain whether this approach is both safe (I won't break something on the AD server) and sufficient (other steps needed perhaps?).

Any pointers will be appreciated.

2 Answers 2


Just copy the admx/adml files to the location. Group Policy templates are backwards compatible with previous versions. You should not copy these from a Windows 10 installation, but use the official download from Microsoft.


  • Both responses to my question are similar, ie pointing me to follow approach 2. However they do not cover the details/necessary steps needed. Meaning, you are prompting me to run an MSI on a 2019 server. What comes next though? Should I go to c:\windows\policydefinitions of the server, take whatever is there and copy it to my central store directly (that is to the PolicyDefinitions folder under central store)? Or do something else or nothing at all? I'd be grateful if you could edit you answer to clarify this point.
    – carmik
    Sep 24, 2021 at 16:30
  • 1
    @carmik: You can run the MSI installer on your workstation. It will copy the ADMX files to C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Group Policy\Administrative Templates (.admx) for Windows 10 xxx\Policy Definitions. From there, you can select those folders/files and copy to the central store. You can make a backup somewhere else first.
    – Greg Askew
    Sep 24, 2021 at 22:22
  • Just what I was looking for! Perhaps you'd like to include this info in your answer directly.
    – carmik
    Sep 25, 2021 at 8:08

Kudos in taking caution in your approach.

Download the ADMX templates from Microsoft and copy them into your Central Store. It's not any more difficult than that.


  • Please see my comment/question to Greg Askew above, thanks!
    – carmik
    Sep 24, 2021 at 16:32

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