Microsoft tells AMD-powered Insiders they're unblocked in new Windows 10 Dev Channel build: 'Oh no we're not!'

Panto season starts early in Redmond

Microsoft celebrated the end of its Inspire conference and the release of its financials with a pantomime-like Windows 10 Insider update. At least as far as AMD-based PCs were concerned.

The previous Dev Channel Insider build had been blocked for AMD-owning Windows Insiders. Microsoft reassured worried users that all would be well by the time the next build rolled around and, sure enough, with Build 20175 the block had been lifted, meaning AMD users could share in the delights of, er, a new Settings icon and some tweaking to the Sound settings.

Except many found themselves still blocked. The Windows Insider gang hurriedly threw out a fix which involved the slightly alarming use of rmdir to remove a folder lurking in the Windows directory containing temporary Windows Update files.

We've told enough Who, Me? tales over the years to know that care should be taken with such commands but hey – Microsoft's unpaid testers know the risks of the programme and are ready and able to rebuild a hopelessly borked Windows install, right?

If only somebody within Microsoft had thought to see if a previously blocked AMD device now worked. The company's own AMD-based Surface Laptop 3 machines are currently on sale and we're pretty sure Uncle Satya can extract a few dollars from the back of the sofa.

AMD borkage aside, the build also improves pinned sites for Microsoft Edge by showing all tabs for a newly pinned site and adds the much-vaunted Eye Contact feature to the Surface app. The latter adjusts the gaze of a Surface Pro X user so it appears the lucky recipient of Microsoft's Arm-based flagship is staring at the camera. Apple fans will see something similar in iOS 14 with the FaceTime Eye contact feature.

The build also includes a raft of fixes, including one for the HYPERVISOR_ERROR bugcheck, although some Microsoft Store games featuring anti-cheat code may fail to launch. There are also a few issues with the UI, including the min/max/close buttons sometimes getting stuck after resizing a UWP app and occasionally "Close All Windows", er, doesn't.

Some Insiders, us included, have also received 31 July expiration notifications for builds 20161 (released on 1 July) and earlier. Popping on the update should, according to Microsoft, deal with this, although some have seen the same expiration message on non-Insider builds.

In Windows land, sometimes it can feel like everyone is a tester.

Finally, Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 (WSL2) fans were given the first set of new toys since the GPU Compute release. Usefully, it is now possible to adjust the default memory assignment of the WSL2 VM to be half of the host memory or 8GB, whichever is less.

There was, however, less good news for users of the original WSL1 compatibility layer as Program Manager Craig Loewen cautioned that fans of the original should hold off on upgrading to 20175 while the team works on a WSL1-specific issue.

It's another reminder that this is very much preview code. ®

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021