Microsoft has released Windows 11 Preview Build 25136 for the Insiders on the Dev channel. This release brings the much-awaited File Explorer tabs feature to the Windows 11 operating system amongst other new features and improvements.
Here are the highlights for Windows 11 Build 25136:
- You can now open multiple folders in new File Explorer tabs, as opposed to opening them in a new window.
- Dynamic widgets in the taskbar that displays the latest breaking news around your area amongst other useful information.
- Significant improvements to the Notepad and Windows Media Player.
With these, Microsoft highlights a new known issue with this flight as well. Let us see what those are in detail and then continue to see how to install this build.
Table of contents
- New in Windows 11 Build 25136
- Known Issues
- Download and Install Windows 11 Build 25136
- Rollback/Remove Windows 11 Insider Preview Update
- Cleanup After Installing Windows Updates
New in Windows 11 Build 25136
File Explorer Tabs
After upgrading to build 25136, you can open multiple locations/directories across the Windows operating system in a single File Explorer window using different tabs, just like in modern web browsers.
Moreover, it has an improved layout of the left navigation pane, making it easier to access the folders that matter to you more than the others. The layout is now much neater and provides easy access to your pinned folders as well as recently accessed content.
Another change Microsoft has made is that the known Windows folders that are available by default under “This PC” are no longer there and is now only limited to the computer’s drives/ volumes.
Another change that has been made to File Explorer is when you navigate to folders that have been synced to OneDrive (such as Documents, Pictures, etc.), the address bar displays the correct path so you are not confused about whether the content you are seeing is on the cloud or stored locally on your computer.
Note that this feature is rolling out gradually therefore you may not experience it right away. If you cannot wait any longer you can try this hack to activate File Explorer tabs right now!
Dynamic Widgets on Taskbar
You can already see the widgets on the taskbar in Windows 11. However, Microsoft has now made them dynamic, which means that rather than showing static information, you will now see the recent updates around your area, including the breaking news.
Microsoft says that the content which will be displayed is designed to be “glanceable,” which you can then explore by clicking on it and expanding the widgets board. However, if you do not interact with the content update, it will continue to show the weather in your area after a while.
This feature may not yet be available to all Insiders right away but will be rolled out over the next few weeks.
Improvements to Notepad
Significant improvements have been made to the Notepad application with this flight. The new improvements mentioned below are applicable to Notepad version 11.2205 and above unless stated otherwise.
- Support for ARM64 devices – The Notepad experience has been improved in terms of speed and performance for ARM64 devices for Notepad version 11.2204 and above, which is available in all channels for Insiders.
- Improved performance – Users will now notice significant speed and performance gains, especially while scrolling very large files or replacing large amounts of text altogether.
- Accessibility enhancement – Microsoft has added improvements for screen readers, scaling of text, access keys, and other assistive technologies in the Notepad for people who experience difficulties whilst reading from a screen with standard display settings.
Improvements to Windows Media Player
Upon user requests, Microsoft has added the feature to play your music collection using the Media Player by the date it was added to the playlist. Of course, this means that it can be sorted using the “Date added” option.
Moreover, the support for CD playback has also been added, but this feature was silently incorporated back in March 2022 and is now announced by Microsoft.
Microsoft has also made improvements to the UI for better adaptation to Windows theme changes. Also, the media content drag-and-drop experience has been improved.
Other Improvements and Fixes
Other changes and fixes have also been made with this flight:
- An issue that was leading to some PCs being erroneously detected as tablets has been fixed.
- An issue causing some Insiders to experience an SYSTEM_SERVICE_EXCEPTION bugcheck in recent Dev Channel builds has been addressed.
- Microsoft is rolling out the ability for Insiders to report animated gifs they feel are inappropriate from the emoji panel (Windows Key + .).
- An issue that was sometimes causing taskbar apps to overflow with the system tray icons has been addressed.
- When hovering on an app in the system tray, its notification will no longer flash.
- An issue that could cause the Start menu to only show one column of recommended items has been taken care of.
- If you’re pinning a large number of apps to the Start menu, it should now refresh to show them more reliably.
- An issue from the previous flight where the “Disks & Volumes” section of Settings app >> System >> Storage wasn’t displaying any disks or volumes has been fixed.
- A fix to help with a rare issue has been made that was causing the title bars to sometimes go transparent or missing in certain apps.
- [Windows Update]
- An issue where Windows Update might unexpectedly show the error 0x00000000 when there wasn’t anything wrong has been fixed.
- An issue that was leading to some devices bug checking with HYPERVISOR_ERROR when trying to upgrade to a new build has been addressed.
- [Task Manager]
- An issue that was causing the Task Manager to crash on launch sometimes after switching between light and dark mode or changing accent color has been fixed.
With these new features, improvements, and fixes, there are also a few known issues we think you should know about before upgrading to this build.
- Windows Insiders on Surface Pro X devices will hit a black screen when attempting to resume from hibernate on this build. To mitigate this problem, you must power cycle (long power button shutdown) to get back into the device. If this becomes a nuisance, you can roll back to the previous OS build or disable hibernation mode.
- There are reports that the Mica material and Acrylic blur effect is not rendering correctly in OS surfaces like the Start menu, Notification Center and other areas.
- There are reports that shutting down via the Start menu isn’t working for some Insiders and is unexpectedly rebooting instead.
- Some games that use Easy Anti-Cheat may crash or cause your PC to bugcheck.
- [File Explorer]
- The up arrow is misaligned in the File Explorer tabs. This will be fixed in a future update.
- [Live captions]
- Certain apps in full screen (e.g., video players) prevent live captions from being visible.
- Certain apps positioned near the top of the screen and closed before live captions is run will re-launch behind the live captions window positioned at the top. Use the system menu (ALT + Spacebar) while the app has focus to move the app’s window further down.
Download and Install Windows 11 Build 25136
To install this update, you need to be running Windows 11 and subscribed to the Dev channel. If you have enabled Windows updates, you will automatically get a “New features are ready to install” prompt.
If not, follow these steps to install Preview Build 25136:
Navigate to the Settings app and then click Windows Update on the left.
Here, click Check for updates on the right side of the window.
You will then see the following update available under Updates available to download:
Windows 11 Insider Preview 25136.1000 (rs_prerelease)
Click Download & install in front of it.
The update will now begin to download and then install. Once complete, click Restart Now.
Once the computer restarts, you can verify that the OS has been updated by typing in winver in the Run Command box.
Rollback/Remove Windows 11 Insider Preview Update
If you do not wish to keep the installed preview update for some reason, you can always roll back to the previous build of the OS. However, this can only be performed within the next 10 days after installing the new update.
To roll back after 10 days, you will need to apply this trick.
Cleanup After Installing Windows Updates
If you want to save space after installing Windows updates, you can run the following commands one after the other in Command Prompt with administrative privileges:
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /AnalyzeComponentStore
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup
Windows 11 Insider Preview updates history
|Build||Release Date||Features added|
|Windows 11 Build 25227||19-Oct-22||Improvements to Windows Update management, pop-up trailer preview in Microsoft Store, monoline icons in widgets board.|
|Windows 11 Build 25217||6-Oct-22||Supports third-party widgets, new video calling experience in the taskbar, Simplified Chinese IME cloud suggestions, and Microsoft Store improvements|
|Windows 11 Build 25211||29-Sep-22||New Widget Settings and Widget Picker, New Outlook for Windows experience, Task Manager in the taskbar context menu|
|Windows 11 Build 25206||21-Sep-22||SMB authentication rate limiter and dynamic refresh rate|
|Windows 11 Build 25201||14-Sep-22||Expandable widgets board and sign-in option in Game Pass widget|
|Windows 11 Build 25197||8-Sep-22||Tablet-optimized taskbar restored, animated icons introduced in the Settings app, system tray icons updated|
|Windows 11 Build 25193||1-Sep-22||New Braille support for Narrator and Xbox subscription management from the Settings app|
|Windows 11 Build 25188||24-Aug-22||Intelligent touch keyboard when the physical keyboard detached|
|Windows 11 Build 25169||28-Jul-22||Added App lockdown feature|
|Windows 11 Build 25126||25-May-22||Improved account settings page|
|Windows 11 Build 25120||18-May-22||Added search widget on Desktop/|
|Windows 11 Build 25115||11-May-22||Added suggested actions feature|
|Windows 11 Build 22616||5-May-22||Improved Xbox controller bar|
|Windows 11 Build 22598||13-Apr-22||Improved Windows Media Player, Windows Spotlight default background|
|Windows 11 Build 22593||6-Apr-22||Homepage to Windows Explorer|
|Windows 11 Build 22579||18-Mar-22||Allows naming start menu folders|
|Windows 11 Build 22572||9-Mar-22||Introducing Microsoft Family and Clipchamp|
|Windows 11 Build 22567||2-Mar-22||Smart App Control, Focuses On Renewable Energy|
|Windows 11 Build 22557||16-Feb-22||Folders of pinned apps, DnD, Focus, Live captions, quick access to Android apps, pin files to Quick Access, and more.|