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Latest Windows 11 Preview a well-rounded update – literally

What else is round? Oh yes, holes

While the Windows of today may have more holes in it than a 20-year-old pair of underpants, Microsoft has continued plugging away at previews for the upcoming iteration, Windows 11.

Having got the excitement of integrated Teams chat out the way earlier this week, it was business as usual for build 22000.100, released to Dev Channel Insiders last night.

This week's modifications are all about soothing users whose nerves have likely been shredded by the recent arrival of HiveNightmare.

Microsoft's obsession with all things rounded has continued with the hidden icons flyout lurking on the right of the taskbar. No longer squared, the panel's corners are now as rounded as the security holes gaping in Windows 10 (although it took a toggling of the themes to make the magic happen).

As well as the customary nag screen about Teams, Microsoft has also made it possible to access Focus Assist settings from the Notification and fiddled with background activity alerts from apps in the Taskbar. A "calming treatment that minimizes the impact of unwarranted distractions" has been applied, along with a tint of red for the app's background on the taskbar and a "red pill" under the app to indicate attention is needed.

We'll leave the red pill and blue pill jokes to The Matrix aficionados.

As well as some other minor visual tweaks, the build also includes a raft of fixes, many of which give a clue with regard to just how rough and ready the preview of Windows 11 truly is. Crashes of explorer.exe after standby are addressed, as are sync problems for the Taskbar clock and "an infinite loop making some Insider's devices hang during shutdown."

Known issues include a blessedly empty Widgets board and a borked Windows Hello (Face). The former needs a logout and login while the latter requires some Device Manager fettling.

Windows 11 is expected to hit general availability during the fourth quarter of the year, possibly as soon as October. However, even taking into account the preview nature of the code, there remains a way to go yet. ®


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