Microsoft updates new Windows 10 20H2 test build with new UX changes and more

Microsoft adds a number of new UX, Edge, management changes to Windows 10 build 19042.421, a new test build of Windows 10 20H2, which is going out to Beta channel testers.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft is rolling out a new Windows 10 20H2 test build to the Beta Channel (the former Slow Ring). The new build, 19042.421, includes quite a few new features, especially in the user interface arena, and a load of fixes.

Microsoft officials previously said that Windows 10 20H2 would be a minor update to Windows 10 2004, aka the May 2020 Update. Like Windows 10 1909 was to Windows 10 1903, the coming 20H2 release will look and feel like a cumulative update to 2004, officials said.

That's why today's Windows 10 20H2 test build going out to Insiders is a bit surprising. It includes quite a few new features that Microsoft had been testing in the Dev Channel (Fast Ring). Up until this point, the 20H2 test builds didn't have a whole lot new, which seemed to be by design. 

If Microsoft is sticking to its previous schedule with 20H2, that test build should have been "done," other than new fixes, as of June. Maybe Microsoft is adding some of these features because there might not be a Windows 10 21H1 feature release? That's just a guess based on a tip I got recently which Microsoft has declined to confirm or deny.

Anyway, back to today's 20H2 test build. Build 19042.421 includes theme-aware tiles in the Start Menu; and the ability to ALT + TAB between both apps and tabs in Microsoft's new Edge build (if you have a Canary or Dev build of Chredge, meaning version 83.0.475.0 or higher). It also adds improvements to pinned sites in Microsoft Edge (for those running Canary or Dev Channel Edge builds 85.0.561.0 or higher); and a more personalized Taskbar (for new accounts or first-logon scenarios only at this point).

Today's Insider 20H2 build also adds changes to the notification experience, enabling users to dismiss individual notifications by clicking an X on the top right corner. The Focus Assist notification and Summary toast also will be off by default.

Microsoft is migrating information from the Control Panel's System page into the Settings > System > About page. And it also is updating the tablet experience for 2-in-1 devices and making changes to the Modern Device Management (MDM) policy so that it's on par with what's been available to devices managed with on-prem Group Policy.

The full list of changes, improvements, and fixes are listed in the July 24 blog post about the new build.

Microsoft is expected to make Windows 10 20H2 available sometime this fall. The 20H2 release will include the new Chromium Edge browser by default.

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