Microsoft fixes Copilot multi-monitor issues in Windows 11 update
Alt+Tab support added and more in latest update to OS
Microsoft has released a patch to deal with Copilot's broken multi-monitor support and reminded users that if they want to keep chatting with the Gen AI preview, they'll need to ditch their local account in favor of something from Microsoft.
As if to underline the preview nature of Microsoft's Copilot for Windows release, the generative AI helper that turned up in Windows 11 didn't work for users with multi-monitor setups. The issue was sufficiently bad that Microsoft slapped on a compatibility hold until the fix could make its way from the Windows Insider program to the PCs of regular users.
The result is KB5032288, which landed in preview form this week. The patch for Windows 22H2 and Windows 23H2 – be warned, Microsoft will pull optional, non-security preview releases for Windows 11 22H2 from February 27, 2024 – allows the preview to be used over multiple displays. Click the Copilot button on the taskbar of the display where you want the assistant to appear, and the son-of-Clippy will show up.
Microsoft has also added Alt+Tab support for the Copilot in Windows preview. However, as with many things Copilot-related, the company warned: "This is available to a small audience initially and deploys more broadly in the months that follow."
This is assuming those users have a Microsoft account. In the release notes for the patch, Microsoft said users can only ask Copilot in Windows for help 10 times if using a local account. After that, it's verified accounts all the way. Unsurprisingly, these include a Microsoft Account and Azure Active Directory – or what will become Microsoft Entra ID before long.
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The Register asked Microsoft how it came up with a limit of 10 questions. It sounds more like something a Dungeon Master might decide upon when reanimating the dead, so perhaps Cortana is still lurking behind the scenes somewhere. We will update if the company responds.
In the meantime, the requirement for a Microsoft account, and particularly one that is verified, is a pointer to where Copilot is headed in the enterprise Windows world.
As well as Copilot, the update addresses issues in File Explorer and - for a real blast from the past - problems that can cause Internet Explorer mode tabs to stop responding. ®