Windows 11 version 22H2: what to expect from Microsoft’s new update

Microsoft’s first update for Windows 11 was released earlier this week. After a lengthy public testing cycle of more than three months, the 2022 update should not surprise users of the Microsoft distribution. With a gradual rollout planned over the next few months, it’s unlikely to cause any drama for them or the enterprise administrators.

However, this update should not turn Windows 11 naysayers into regular users of the distribution. It has no major architectural changes and retains both the system requirements and the overall user interface design of the original release. It’s essentially a “fit and finish” update with some useful, but far from mandatory, new features.

The good news is that Microsoft’s update should be relatively small and fast.

More Start Menu Customization Options

With this update, you can finally organize program icons into folders on the Windows 11 Start Menu. Drag one icon on top of another to combine them into a folder, and give that folder a custom name to reduce clutter.

Another Windows 11 change will allow you to adjust the relative size of the two sections of the Start menu, one for pinned program icons and the other for “recommended” content, such as shortcuts to files you’ve recently opened and frequently used apps. In the initial release of Windows 11, these areas were the same size and their relative size could not be changed.

This gave an unsightly large block of space if you configured Windows 11 to hide all shortcuts in the Recommended section. In the 2022 update, you’ll be able to change the layout to expand the pinned area and shrink the recommended section (or vice versa). You can’t completely remove the Featured section, but choosing the More Pins layout makes it much less visible.

Big File Explorer Update

The 2022 update, on the other hand, is undergoing the biggest File Explorer update in at least a decade. However, it will be necessary to wait a few more weeks before it appears; apparently this feature will be enabled in the first monthly update after the release of the 2022 update.

The most obvious change is the addition of a multi-tab interface. You can always have multiple File Explorer windows open, but keeping folders open in separate tabs makes it easy to cut, copy, and paste between different locations without having to juggle multiple windows. The tabbed interface behaves like a modern browser, so the learning curve is easy.

The left navigation bar has been slightly redesigned with a new home icon and tighter integration with Microsoft’s default cloud storage service, OneDrive. When OneDrive Personal or OneDrive for Business is open, you’ll see an icon in the top right corner that makes it easy to manage your storage and sync options.

New security features

Smart App Control, a new security feature in this update, is designed to protect Windows 11 PCs from malware by preventing users from running unknown and untrusted apps. Don’t look for this feature on an upgraded PC. This is really only available on new PCs or clean installs where protection comes into play before installing any third party app.

Several other security settings that were available but disabled by default in the initial release of Windows 11 are enabled with this update. Memory integrity protection, for example, uses virtualization-based security to block a common class of exploits. People performing an update may find that this feature cannot be enabled due to older device drivers.

Source: .com

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