Microsoft has released yet another build of Windows 11 to Insiders in the Dev channel, uncovering some new features that are making their way to the operating system in the future. Specifically, this build features a new USB4 page in the Settings, along with the recently-announced improvements for app defaults. The build number is 23419, and as a reminder, this Dev channel is a new one, while the old Dev channel has been succeeded by the new Canary channel, where Microsoft isn't announcing a new build yet.
USB4 Settings page
A dedicated Settings page for USB4 devices was spotted in an earlier build of Windows 11 thanks to some hacking, but it wasn't functional or easily accessible yet. This page is meant to let users see more information about the USB4 devices connected to their PC, assuming the PC supports USB4 in the first place. You can see information about USB4 hubs you may be using and the devices connected to them, as well as details of the USB4 domain. You can also easily copy these details to share them with customer support and IT administrator in an enterprise environment.
USB4 is becoming more widely available and it's largely based on Thunderbolt, so if you have a Thunderbolt 4 port, you should be able to see the USB4 host router listed in Device Manager. If you don't see it, you also won't see the new Settings page.
Better app default settings
As Microsoft has detailed earlier this week, Windows 11 is seeing some changes to the way app defaults work, which should make it easier to change the default apps for a given file type or protocol. now, when an app asks you to set it as the default, should you choose to do so, you'll be taken directly to the Settings page where you can change the default settings for it thanks to a deep-link URI. Previously, any attempt to change a default app would take you to the general default apps page, so you still had to search for the app and then choose it as the default for the file type you wanted.
Microsoft has also promised a new experience for apps that try to be pinned on the taskbar, but this will be available at a later time.
Live kernel memory dumps in Task Manager
This feature was previously available in the old Dev channel and the new Canary channel, but now, users in the rebooted Dev channel can also create live kernel memory dumps for a given process inside Task Manager. This is particularly useful for developers to identify issues with their apps. You can also change settings for these memory dumps in the Task Manager settings.
Aside from the changes above, most of the additions in this build are fairly minor and were already available in other channels. If you use the Chinese IME, you'll now be able to use cloud-powered suggestions for popular Chinese words, for example. Microsoft has also tweaked the network icon when showing the VPN connection indicator, with the VPN icon now following the theme color you set for Windows.
There's also the ability to enable seconds on the taskbar clock, something that's already available in the Canary channel, as well as a new, faster way to access Bing through a button inside the search bar on the taskbar. Microsoft has also improved the Voice access commands app with a full list of available commands. Additionally, as Microsoft is deprecating the Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool (MSDT) and MSDT Troubleshooters, some of the existing troubleshooters in the Settings app are beginning to redirect users to the Get Help app.
One change some users may not like is that the Print Screen key on a keyboard will now open the Snipping Tool by default. This capability already existed but it was turned off by default, and now Microsoft is switching to an on-by-default approach. You can still turn it off in the Settings app under Accessibility -> Keyboard.
Finally, of course, there's the usual list of bug fixes that every build comes with. You can see that list below:
- Improved the experience on logon after booting up by reducing the performance impact of startup apps.
[Taskbar & System Tray]
- Fixed an issue that was causing Narrator to read the position before the name on system tray icons.
- Fixed an issue causing the show hidden icons flyout to open behind things like OneNote flyout and live captions.
- Fixed an issue which could cause explorer.exe crashes related to drag and drop.
[Search on the Taskbar]
- Fixed a search crash from the last flight.
- Fixed an issue which could cause explorer.exe to crash when opening Home if certain content was visible in the Recent section.
- Made some improvements to the performance of loading File Explorer in the case where there’s a disconnected network drive visible in the navigation pane.
- Fixed an issue where dragging content across an open Start menu folder could cause a crash.
- Fixed an issue where after using voice typing your PC might not enter modern standby.
- We fixed the issue causing live captions to not work for Chinese Traditional on Arm64 devices.
- Fixed an issue where some of the details in the Performance page wouldn’t display properly until you resized the window or changed pages back and forth.
There are also a few known issues with this release:
[Search on the Taskbar]
- There is an issue where some people may not see the search box on taskbar and/or the settings to adjust the search box experience on the taskbar after updating to Build 23403. We are aware of the issue, and we are working on a fix.
Insiders who have access keys in File Explorer:
- Access keys will appear inconsistently if no button is pressed. Pressing a button will cause them to reappear.
Insiders will have issues with the following commands on recommended files in File Explorer:
- Clicking on the Share command will currently bring up the Windows share sheet (non-OneDrive).
- Clicking on the “Open File Location” command will pop an error dialog that can easily be dismissed.
- Clicking on the ‘Remove from list’ command will result in no actions.
- On ARM64 devices, enhanced speech recognition support installed through the Language & Region settings page will require restarting live captions if you switch languages in the live captions Caption language menu.
- Certain languages shown on the Language & Region settings page will indicate speech recognition support (e.g., Korean) but don’t yet have support for live captions.
- When adding a language through the Language & Region settings page, language feature installation progress may become hidden, and you may not see install completion of “Enhanced speech recognition” (required by Live Captions). (You can use the language’s “Language options” to monitor progress.) If this happens, there may be an unexpected delay before the live caption setup experience detects this and lets you continue.
- Captioning performance may be degraded in non-English languages and missing out-of-language filtering in non-English (United States) languages which means that incorrect captions will be shown for speech not in the caption language.
If you're a Windows Insider in the Dev channel, you can download this update by going into the Settings app and checking for updates. Keep in mind that if you were in the Dev channel prior to the split into Canary and Dev channels, you're now on the Canary channel instead. You need to perform a clean installation of Windows 11 to join the new Dev channel.