Microsoft has recently released another Windows Insider preview build to the dev channel. Windows 11 Preview Build 22579 brings a host of improvements and some new features like multi-touch gestures and the option to exclude removable USB drives from BitLocker encryption. You can read about the significant changes below, or visit this link for the complete changelog.
USB Drive Exclusion From Encryption
BitLocker is a full volume encryption feature on Windows, first introduced with Windows Vista. The application helps users encrypt their data easily, helping protect against unauthorised access.
Although, users can also encrypt their data accidentally, specially on removable USB drives. To fix this, Windows 11 Build 22579 introduces a new policy option that allows admins to exclude specific removable USB drives. With the policy enabled, BitLocker wont be able to encrypt storage on the exclusion list, nor will send prompts for the same.
To enable the feature, first gather the Hardware IDs of the devices to be excluded from BitLocker. Then create a profile from Devices > Configuration Profiles (in Endpoint Manager Portal).
Select “Windows 10 and later” and in Profile type: “Templates” and in Template Name — “Custom”.
Then assign a name and description for the new policy from the basic tab. After that, click the Configuration Settings tab and go to “Add”, and fill the following tabs.
- Oma-URI: ./Device/Vendor/MSFT/BitLocker/RemovableDrivesExcludedFromEncryption
- Data type: String
- And in value, input the relevant Hardware IDs.
Updates for Media Player and Your Phone App
The new insider build also brings an update for Windows Media Player, finally adding support for CD playback. The update also improves the app’s theme engine, and drag and drop controls for media content.
Your Phone App also gets new features, showcasing an even deeper Android integration with Windows. In an earlier update, Microsoft announced the Recent Apps feature which showcases the three most recently used apps on your phone, on Windows. After the recent update, even Office Documents will show on the recently used tab on Windows, and users will be able to access them right from there and continue editing seamlessly. Supported documents include Word, Excel and PowerPoint files saved in OneDrive.
Unfortunately, like many Your Phone App features, this too is limited to Windows Insiders for now, on select Samsung devices (OneUI 3.1.1 or above).
Other Changes and Improvements
- With the new update, Win32 apps that used the older CprintDialog will now use the modern print dialogue on Windows 11. The modern print dialogue now also discovers local network printers automatically.
- In an earlier Windows 11 Preview Build, the ‘Open With’ dialogue tab was updated with a more modern UI with dark/light themes. Microsoft is now reverting back to the older ‘Open With’ dialogue tab for the time being, due to some performance issues.
- The Run New Task button is now available on all pages of Task Manager with an updated icon.
- New Fluent-style icons for on-screen keyboard and Magnifier.
- Users can now name folders of apps in the start menu.
- Get Started is a built-in Windows Store app that helps users learn about various features in the OS. The app is now going to showcase pinned site suggestions, helping users easily access them from the taskbar.
- Microsoft has increasingly updated UI elements in recent Insider builds to optimize them for touch-enabled Windows devices. These include an updated taskbar design and new multi-finger touch gestures. With the most recent insider build, Microsoft has added yet another gesture to go back and forth between recently used Windows, using three fingers to swipe left and right.
- Addressed an issue which was causing Gaming Services to not work in the previous flight, leading to issues launching and installing some games.
- Fixed a few high hitting explorer.exe crashes impacting recent flights during general usage of Windows.
- Fixed a bug for Windows Insiders trying to upgrade directly from Windows 10 to recent Windows 11 Dev Channel builds.
- It’s no longer necessary to swipe twice from the tablet-optimized taskbar to show Start or Quick Settings – once the taskbar is fully expanded, these will display with a continued swipe upwards.
- Addressed an issue where using the swipe gesture to invoke the Start menu might bring it up on the wrong screen if an external monitor was connected.
- Notifications will no longer overlap with the tablet-optimized taskbar.
- Fixed an issue where if you invoked Task View the Desktops area might not render completely.
- Middle clicking an app icon to launch a new instance of that app should work again now.
- Fixed an issue where Start’s folders were still showing animations even if you had animation effects disabled.
- Mitigated an issue that was causing Start’s pinned and folders layouts to get reset to default after explorer.exe restarts.
- Addressed an underlying issue leading to a transparent line along the side of the Start menu when changing your display’s scale.
- You’ll now see the same breaks in focus sessions over 30 minutes started from the Notification Center as you would in sessions started from the Clock app.
- If Do not disturb is turned on prior to starting a focus session, stopping the focus session will no longer turn off Do not disturb.
- If you turn on a focus session, it will not be reset if you have to log out or reboot now.
- Fixed an issue causing your keyboard focus to unexpectedly move to the top of Notification Center when ending a focus session below the calendar.
- Fixed an issue that was preventing you from adding apps to the Settings > System > Notifications > Set priority notifications
- Fixed an issue where the enraged face emoji wasn’t searchable in Turkish using the word angry (kızgın). Please continue giving feedback about the emoji search results under Input and Language > Emoji Panel in the Feedback Hub!
- Addressed an issue where the Japanese IME was unexpectedly switching to Katakana mode when focus was set to the UAC dialog.
- Mitigated an issue recently where if you removed a third party IME from that language in Settings > Time & Language > Language & Region and didn’t uninstall it, it might still show in the input switcher.
- Fixed an issue which was causing the mouse to be invisible in fields of certain apps, as well as some unexpected cursor related app crashes in recent flights.
- Addressed an issue where the gesture for bringing in the Notification Center from the side of the screen wasn’t working for the Arabic or Hebrew display languages.
- Fixed an issue for the header at the top of Network & Internet, where the chevron was backwards for Arabic and Hebrew display languages.
- If transparency is off under Settings > Personalization > Colors, the background of ALT + Tab will no longer be transparent.
- If you drag a window to the top of the screen and then drag it back down, the dismiss animation for snap layouts will display more consistently now.
- Made a small adjustment to fix an animation glitch when invoking snap layouts at the top of the screen.
- Fixed an explorer.exe crash which was happening when dragging certain windows across snap layouts at the top of the screen.
- Mitigated an issue which was causing Task View to appear unresponsive if you invoked Task View while snap assist was showing on screen.
- Did some work to address an issue where ALT + Tab might get stuck open if you invoked it via a very quick gesture on your touchpad.
- Fixed an explorer.exe crash that could happen when an app goes in and out of full screen mode.
- Mitigated an issue leading to cellular connections not working on certain devices in the last few builds.
- Addressed an issue leading to Wi-Fi speed degradation in the previous flight.
- Fixed an issue that was causing the voice access banner to block the top row of desktop icons or the top of full-screen applications.
- Live captions will now show across your Desktops.
- The “floating on screen” window position will now correctly show as selected in the settings flyout if the live captions window was forced to float (for example when using a full screen app).
- The maximum height of the live captions window is now capped at 40% of monitor height.
- Live captions will no longer crash upon shrinking a max height live captions window.
- Toggling mono audio will no longer crash live captions.
- Fixed an issue with how Narrator read out collapsed sections in Settings > Accessibility > Narrator when navigating using Shift + Tab.
- Fixed a few high hitting Task Manager crashes.
- Fixed an issue where if focus was inside the Details page and you started typing, focus would stop moving through the processes list after the first letter.
- If you’re using the Performance page in Summary view, the title bar of Task Manager will now be hidden.
- The percentage on the volume flyout that shows when using your hardware keys will now be centered in the design consistently.
- Improved how keyboard focus and navigation works when moving through and closing the accessibility options on the Lock screen.