Windows 10 testers have been graced with a new preview build for the update due to land in the first half of 2020, which introduces a new trick for the revamped Cortana app.
Build 18975 (20H1) has been pushed out to the fast ring with the headline change being the ability to move the Cortana window around to anywhere you’d like on the desktop.
Of course, another change recently introduced in preview was the introduction of a new chat-based interface for Cortana allowing you to interact more naturally with the digital assistant, and Microsoft notes that because of this, you may well want to keep Cortana around for longer on the desktop.
Bearing that in mind, the ability to shift the window around, away from the default position, is an important one. All you have to do is grab the title bar and drag the window wherever you want, and it’s also possible to resize to your own liking, too.
Essentially, this is all part of the move to decouple Cortana from the taskbar and Search function, making it a separate app, so obviously it should function like any other Windows application in terms of being able to move and resize it.
Not everyone will see this change though, at least not at first. For starters, it’s only rolling out to testers who already have the new chat-based Cortana (which has initially only been pushed out to Windows Insiders in the US), and it has only been deployed to half of them. The rollout will continue to open up further as Microsoft gets feedback and hones the new feature.
In this build, Microsoft has also made tweaks to the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), namely fixing a “number of localhost reliability issues”, so hopefully things should run more smoothly (although remember, you’re still beta testing these fixes here).
Furthermore, the ability to rename virtual desktops has now been rolled out to all testers in the fast ring. So instead of Desktop 1, 2, and so forth, you can give these more informative names which persist after rebooting your machine.
This change was actually introduced for 50% of testers three weeks ago, so it has become available to all Windows Insiders inside a month – although the time any feature takes to fully roll out will of course vary depending on its complexity, and the issues Microsoft encounters on the way.
Along with these bigger changes, there are a load of minor bug fixes, including a solution for those encountering an ‘error 0xC0000142’ when trying to upgrade to recent preview builds. And there are a number of known issues, too, all of which are detailed in Microsoft’s blog post on the build.
The biggest gremlin seems to pertain to the new Reset this PC cloud download option which doesn’t work when certain optional features are installed with Windows 10. Also, it’s wrongly calculating the amount of disk space that must be freed up in the event that it detects there not being enough space to proceed.
This should be fixed soon, Microsoft notes, but for now, you should free up 5GB more disk space than suggested by the Windows prompt.
Microsoft is further planning on squashing more problems with the 20H1 update in a ‘bug bash’ which is scheduled to start on September 25, running through to October 2.