Today, Microsoft released the next major Windows 11 update to the Release Preview ring of final testing. Windows 11 22H2 is slated to be released in the next months and will include a number of significant updates to the operating system, such as new Start menu folders, enhanced touch gestures, and taskbar drag and drop.
While you wait for Microsoft to formally release the update via Windows Update, you may download the final version, build 22621, from the Windows Insider area of Windows 11. Simply follow the on-screen instructions to join up for the Windows Insider Program, making sure to select Release Preview.
The new spotlight wallpaper feature in Windows 11 22H2 cycles between the gorgeous wallpapers found on the lock screen. Live Captions are also incorporated into Windows 11 22H2, and they’re fantastic for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as anyone who wishes to automatically caption audio. Captions can be generated on-device from any audio source and shown in a window or at the top or bottom of a screen.
The Task Manager has also been greatly improved in Windows 11 22H2, with a new dark mode and a considerably nicer layout. It contains a new command bar to complement the dark look, as well as an efficiency mode that allows you to limit the amount of system resources that apps can consume. If you like Snap Layouts in Windows 11, they’ve been updated in this version to allow you to move an app to the top of a window and expose all the layouts available to you. Microsoft is also adding a Do Not Disturb setting to its Focus function. It’s much easier to immediately silence notifications so you only see the most important ones.
Most Windows 11 users will be relieved to see that drag and drop has returned to the taskbar, allowing you to transfer files into apps such as Photoshop. The new Start menu folders will also allow Windows 11 users to organize the pinned portion of the Start menu into a logical hierarchy of folders.
Windows 11 22H2 will be officially released on devices later this year, most likely in September, but the update is large enough to install now — especially for Live Captions alone.