Microsoft has released a new Windows 11 Build 22518 to insiders in Dev channel. The update brings many new features and important changes with itself. While we covered the “Voice access” feature separately, there are other new features like Spotlight and updated Widgets entry point.
Even Windows 11 File explorer has received an updated context menu. WSL is now available in the Microsoft Store. There are more changes and improvements that you can read in the full changelog provided by Microsoft below.
View the world on your desktop with Spotlight collection
Keep your desktop fresh and inspiring with Spotlight collection. You will get beautiful new desktop pictures from around the world every day and fun facts about each picture. Here is how you can try out Spotlight collection:
- Right-click on your desktop and choose “Personalize”.
- On the Personalization settings page, choose “Background”.
- Under the “Personalize your background” dropdown, select “Spotlight collection”.
Upon enabling Spotlight collection, you will see an inspiring picture from Whitehaven Beach in Australia on your desktop as well as the Spotlight icon.
Later in the day, we will replace Whitehaven Beach with a collection of up to five background pictures from around the world. This could take up to 24 hours. If you hover over the Spotlight icon, you can learn more about each picture. Right-clicking on the Spotlight icon on the desktop opens a context menu where you can switch to a different background picture as well as tell us whether you like or don’t like one of the pictures. Double-clicking on the Spotlight icon launches the landing page where you can learn even more about any of the Spotlight collection pictures you saw throughout the day.
Please note the Spotlight collection experience is not yet localized and will show text in English only. Full localization will come in a future update. Spotlight collection is available to Windows Insiders in the following countries: Australia, Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Norway, Spain, Sweden, U.K., U.S. More countries will be added over time.
Updated entry point for Widgets on your taskbar
We are trying out showing the Widgets entry point on the left side of your taskbar with live weather content. You can also open the Widgets board by simply hovering over the entry point.
For users who choose to align their taskbar, the Widgets entry point will be to the right of the Task view icon.
Group policies and the ability to show/hide the Widgets button from the taskbar remains unchanged.
We’re trying this out so let us know what you think and check out the known issues below for some issues we’re aware of for this experience.
[We are beginning to roll this change out, so it isn’t available to all Insiders just yet as we plan to monitor feedback and see how it lands before pushing it out to everyone.]
Install the Windows Subsystem from Linux (WSL) from the Microsoft Store
WSL is now available in the Microsoft Store. This is the same WSL you know and love but just a different delivery mechanism. Installing WSL from the Store will make it easier to get the latest WSL updates in the future. You can learn more about the Store preview at this blog post or by watching this video.
Starting in this preview build, we’ve made it easier for new users to get started with the WSL in the Microsoft Store by changing the `wsl.exe –install` command to install WSL from the Microsoft Store by default. Additionally, we’ve added some additional arguments to `wsl.exe –install` to make it easier to configure your install, such as `wsl –install –no-launch` which will install a new WSL distro without immediately launching it. To see a full list of available commands please run `wsl –help`. If you want to get started with the Store version right away and already have WSL installed just run `wsl –update` to update immediately to the Store version!
Changes and Improvements
- Starting with today’s build we’re rolling out an underlying platform change to improve the overall performance and reliability of the input switcher for Insiders using multiple keyboard languages and layouts. In addition to this, we’re updating the input switcher to now have an acrylic background. If you have any feedback for the input switcher, please file it in the Feedback Hub under Input and Language > Keyboard and language switching. [We are beginning to roll this change out, so it isn’t available to all Insiders just yet as we plan to monitor feedback and see how it lands before pushing it out to everyone.]
- Updated the context menu in File Explorer to make these options top level based on feedback:
- “Install” when right clicking on font files and .inf files.
- “Install certificate” when right clicking on .cer files.
- “Map network drive” and “Disconnect network drive” when right clicking on This PC.
- “Disconnect” when right clicking on network drives.
- The ability for personalized combinations of emoji based on face and skin tones of family members, couples with heart, kissing, and people holding hands which we began rolling out with Build 22504 is now available to all Insiders in the Dev Channel.
- Starting with Build 22509, we began rolling out a change to display your clock and date will now also be displayed on the taskbars of the secondary monitor or monitors. This is now available to all Insiders in the Dev Channel.
- We’ve added a new extra-large candidate height option for Simplified Chinese IME users under Personalization > Text Input in Settings.