Microsoft released Windows 11 Insider Build 22458 for Insiders in the Dev Channel on September 15th. On the other hand, Build 22000.194 was released in the Beta and Release Preview Channel on September 16th. Both of these updates are incremental and bring essentially nothing new to the table. There are couple of small tidbits that are worth mentioning, however. More importantly, though, just a day after the both builds were released, Amazon‘s Appstore was spotted in the Microsoft Store for the first time. That news trumps anything announced in the new builds by a long shot.
Before we talk about the Amazon Appstore, let’s go over what is worth talking about in the Insider builds. Build Build 22000.194 was released for Beta and Release Preview testers and includes no new features or drastic improvements. Obviously, it has a handful of bug fixes that you can check out for yourself in Microsoft’s blog post. But, the real kicker is the new enforced TPM 2.0 requirement.
TPM 2.0 for VMs
Physical PCs have already had the TPM 2.0 requirement since day one, it was actually possible to bypass up until a certain point in the Insider Program. Now, if you want to run the latest version of Windows 11, you must have hardware or software-enabled TPM 2.0 on your device. But, that requirement has now seeped into Virtual Machines as well. That’s right, starting with Build 22000.194, you need TPM 2.0 to be able to run even VMs.
This means that you can no longer run Windows 11 on a VM without TPM 2.0. Microsoft’s own Enterprise Hyper-V Manager and VMWare both support TPM and, thus, are the only two ways you can run Windows 11 in a VM. For VMWare, users need to go enable encryption, then go into settings and add the TPM 2.0 module from there. For Hyper-V users, users will need to enable TPM by switching to Generation 2 VM.
With this change, TPM 2.0 is solidified as a universal requirement across all devices for Windows 11. It seems a bit harsh that TPM 2.0 is a must now for even VMs but Microsoft is very serious about security in Windows 11. But, with that added layer of security comes compatibility issues that’s likely to leave many customers in the dust. We can only hope that free VMs start offering TPM spoofing soon, or Windows 11 without TPM 2.0 is basically an impossibility unless you buy an expensive license from Microsoft.
Apart from that dreadful news, the new build finally brings the redesigned Snipping Tool, Calculator, and Clock app to Windows 11. Dev Channel users have had access to these apps for a while now, but they’re only rolling out now for Beta and Release Preview Insiders. These are only part of the large slate of Windows 11-redesigned apps that will gradually make their way to all versions of Windows 11.
For Dev Channel Insiders, Microsoft pushed Build 22458 on September 15th. There are no new features added in this build either. To check out the long list of bug fixes and known issues, you can visit the Microsoft Blog. Microsoft mentions one change in their blog but it was actually a part of last week’s update but the company forgot to document it back then.
That change is the new “Sign-in options” link added to the power menu on Start. This makes sense as sign-in options are generally associated with power options as, for instance, you’d likely want to sign out before shutting down your computer. There is one other change as well, which is the inclusion of the TPM 2.0 requirement for VMs, the same one we just discussed above.
The new Tips app
Alongside the release of these two builds came the surfacing of two new apps. This is not tied with the release of the builds in any way, it’s just that the timing matched quite conveniently. First, there is a new “Tips” app for Windows 11 that gives you, well, tips on how to navigate your way through the OS. Second, and more excitingly, the Amazon Appstore was spotted on the Microsoft Store!
The Tips app is a natively integrated app that aims to help it make easier to use Windows 11. There are a lot of new elements in Windows 11 that can overwhelm an unfamiliar user. Therefore, an assistant of sorts that is there to guide you along the way can come in handy. This is precisely where the new Tips app comes in as it can show you your way through the new Start menu, control center, notification center, Settings, File Explorer, and more.
Amazon Appstore appears on the Microsoft Store
Coming to the more interesting bit, Amazon Appstore appearing on the Microsoft Store is a great sign. It shows that the Android Subsystem for Windows 11 is well on track to publicly launch next year, after is was delayed to 2022. It was already spotted on the Microsoft Store a couple of days ago, and various leaks/reports have pointed to Android app support coming to the Dev Channel soon.
For those unware, Microsoft is bringing Android app support to Windows 11 through the Amazon Appstore. Android apps will be emulated on Windows 11 instead of running natively. Microsoft is using bridging technology developed by Intel to translate code for ARM-compiled apps to work on Windows 11. The last intermediary in the equation is the Amazon Appstore which will be used to distribute the apps.
Microsoft won’t put Android apps on its own store, neither is there any involvement from Google Play here. In fact, apps based on Google Play services might even have problems running on Windows 11. Microsoft Store will be used to only promote and advertise these apps, additionally, you’ll be able to see Android apps show in search results but that’s it. To actually download any app, you will be taken to Amazon Appstore.
The listing spotted on the Microsoft Store has a description that reads “Amazon Confidential – For testing purpose“. That description clearly shows us that Microsoft is well into the testing phase of the Android apps support feature. Moreover, to download the Appstore, you actually need a code which, likely, only developers and certain testers have access to. Otherwise, the app is not downloadable.
That is all for this week in Windows Insider developments. In a way, it was both eventful and uneventful. As always, visit the linked blog posts to learn more about the topic. If you’re an Insider yourself then be sure to submit feedback of your experience and help Microsoft make a better product for everyone. Windows 11 will see general availability on October 5 when it releases for a limited set of devices .