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Windows 11 build 23521 outs in Dev Channel


  • Windows 11 build 23521 is now rolling out in the Dev Channel.
  • The update rolls out with visual changes for the Taskbar, Task View, and Task Manager.
  • This release also addresses various fixes and improvements.

Microsoft is rolling out Windows 11 build 23521 for computers in the Dev Channel of the Windows Insider Program. In this release, the company is making available a slew of fixes and improvements for existing features.

Build 23521 for Windows 11, according to the official changes, makes it easier to enable never combined mode on the Taskbar by adjusting “Combine taskbar buttons and hide labels” to always. Also, the system now offers a separate setting for turning this feature on for other Taskbars.

Windows 11 new never combine setting
Windows 11 new never combine setting / Image: Microsoft

Windows Copilot will now be enabled by default for users managed by AAD. And insiders with devices enrolled in the Dev and Beta Channels can now test Windows 365 Switch, which is a feature that provides the ability to easily move between a Windows 365 Cloud PC and the local desktop using the same familiar keyboard commands and mouse.

Windows 365 Cloud PC in Task View
Windows 365 Cloud PC in Task View / Image: Microsoft

In addition, Windows 11 build 23521 brings the ability to sync the accent color with RGB devices with the new “Match my Windows accent color” toggle under “Effects” for Dynamic Lighting. The page also offers a new option to use custom solid colors to light up devices.

The Task Manager is receiving an update for the settings page that matches the design principles of the operating system, similar to the design available in the Settings app. Additionally, the company notes that some of the dialogs in Task Manager have also been updated.

Task Manager settings new UI
Task Manager settings new UI / Image: Microsoft

Build 23521 also changes the behavior that enables the Window Spotlight feature when using the default Windows 11 background or solid color before an operating system update. If you turn off the feature, the system won’t try to enable the feature again in future updates.

Finally, Windows Search now uses the Microsoft Bing Search app to return web content and search results. The “End Task” option from the Taskbar context menu to terminate unresponsive apps no longer needs “Developer Mode” to work.

In the European Economic Area (EEA), users will now require consent to share data between Windows and other signed-in Microsoft services. If you don’t consent, some functionality in Windows features may be unavailable, for example, certain types of file recommendations under “Recommended” on the Start menu.

Windows 11 build 23521 new fixes

This flight also ships with a bunch of fixes and improvements for Taskbar, Input, Settings, File Explorer, and more.

File Explorer

  • Fixed an issue where you couldn’t drag a file out of an archived folder to extract it with one of the newly supported archive formats.
  • Fix an issue where when extracting one of the newly supported archive formats using the Extract All option in the context menu, it wasn’t working unless Windows Explorer was set as the default for that file type.
  • When trying to extract one of the new archive formats and the file is password encrypted, it will now show a message saying this isn’t currently supported.
  • Fixed a bug where Insiders may have experienced a File Explorer crash when dragging the scroll bar or attempting to close the window during an extended file-loading process.
  • Fixed an issue which was causing the search box in File Explorer to not work well with IMEs.
  • Fixed an issue where pasting using the context menu in the address bar wasn’t working (or other context menu actions in the address bar).
  • Fixed an issue where when trying to scroll with touch on Home might result in everything getting selected.
  • Fixed a white flash in dark theme when switching between Home and Gallery.

Taskbar

  • Fixed an issue that removed the USB icon and its options from the system tray.
  • Fixed an issue where the titles were missing from taskbar previews when turning on tablet-optimized taskbar while using uncombined taskbar.
  • Fixed an issue where uncombined taskbar’s app indicators weren’t shown correctly after it showed something was being downloaded.
  • Fixed an explorer.exe crash impacting system tray reliability.
  • Fixed an issue where the End Task feature wasn’t working if you tried it when there were multiple windows open of that app.
  • Fixed an issue where using End Task on certain apps would cause other unrelated apps to close.

HDR Backgrounds

  • Fixed an issue where your HDR wallpaper might appear washed out although HDR was enabled.
  • Fixed an issue where it wasn’t possible to select .JXL files for your wallpaper slideshow.

Other changes

  • If Get Help isn’t installed, when opening one of the troubleshooters in Settings, it will now prompt you to install it, rather than showing an error about not haven’t an app associated for the action.

Install build 23521

If you want to download and install the Windows 11 build 23521, enroll your device in the Dev Channel using the “Windows Insider Program” settings from the “Windows Update” section.

Once you enroll the computer in the program, you can download build 23521 from the “Windows Update” settings by clicking the “Check for Updates” button. However, you will need a device that meets the minimum system requirements to receive the update if you are new to the Windows Insider Program.

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