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Microsoft releases Windows 11 Insider Build 23506 with improved passwordless support and more

Microsoft Windows 11 Share experience

Microsoft today announced the release of Windows 11 Preview Build 23506 to the Dev Channel Insiders. This new Windows 11 build comes with improvements to passwordless experience, redesigned Share sheet, unsafe password copy and paste warnings, and more. Also, starting with this build, the new Outlook for Windows Preview is now an inbox app. This new Outlook app will be replacing the existing Mail app in late 2024.

Find the full list of new features and improvements in Windows 11 Preview Build 23506 below:

Passwordless experience with Windows Hello for Business

With Windows Hello for Business (WHFB), Windows provides organizations with a strong, phish-resistant credential, helping customers move to a passwordless future. Enterprise customers can now set the EnablePasswordlessExperience policy that promotes a user experience on AAD joined machines for core authentication scenarios without requiring a password. This new experience hides passwords from certain Windows authentication scenarios and leverages passwordless recovery mechanisms, such as WHFB PIN reset, if necessary.

Once the policy is set, it removes passwords from the user experience, both for device logon as well as in-session auth scenarios like password managers in a web browser, “Run as” admin or as a different user scenarios, and User Account Control (UAC). Users will navigate through their core authentication scenarios using WHFB in place of passwords. If the user fails to sign in, recovery mechanisms such as PIN reset or web sign-in can be used to help the user recover their credentials without IT helpdesk engagement.

Unsafe password copy and paste warnings

Starting in Windows 11, version 22H2, Enhanced Phishing Protection in Microsoft Defender SmartScreen helps protect Microsoft school or work passwords against phishing and unsafe usage on sites and apps. We are trying out a change starting with this build where users who have enabled warning options for Windows Security under App & browser control > Reputation-based protection > Phishing protection will see a UI warning on unsafe password copy and paste, just as they currently see when they type in their password.

Example warning dialog on unsafe password copy and paste.

Local File Sharing Improvements

We have made some improvements to the built-in Windows share window and nearby sharing for sharing local files from your PC.

Updated Windows share window with new search box, more suggestion contacts, and Outlook share.

Those improvements include:

  • We have redesigned the Windows share window to better match the Windows 11 design principles.
  • Everyone will now be able to email their files through Outlook directly within the Windows share window. Just click on the Outlook icon under the “Share using” section of the Windows share window.
  • The Windows share window now has a search box so you can now search for contacts across Outlook to share a file and the Windows share window will now display 8-10 suggested contacts to quickly share to – including emailing yourself a file.
  • Instead of a dropdown, you will see a button to turn on nearby sharing.
  • For nearby sharing, you will find your own PCs at the top of discovered devices under “Nearby Share”.
  • Files will share faster from one PC to another using Wi-Fi Direct.
  • And we’ve added “Share” to the context menu in File Explorer in addition to having the share icon at the top of the context menu.

As a reminder, these experiences will work for sharing local files from the desktop, File Explorer, Photos, Snipping Tool, Xbox, and other apps that use the built-in Windows share window.

Post-OOBE Experiences

We are trying out several new experiences for after completing OOBE (“out of box experience”) starting with this build. You may see one of these three experiences launched automatically on your device after completing OOBE.

  • If you choose ‘Development Intent’ within the ‘Let’s Customize Your Experience’ page during OOBE, Dev Home will be automatically launched on your device after logging in and reaching the desktop for the first time after OOBE setup.
  • If you choose ‘Development Intent’ within the ‘Let’s Customize Your Experience’ page during OOBE, the Get Started app will be automatically launched on your device after logging in and reaching the desktop for the first time after OOBE setup. The Get Started app will show you a personalized flow that will help you learn more about Dev Home and give you the opportunity to open Dev Home.
  • If you choose to ‘Restore’ your device during OOBE, the Get Started app will be automatically launched on your device after you log into your device for the second time after completing OOBE. The Get Started app will show you a personalized flow that will help you learn about key apps and settings, tell you that Windows has restored on your device and show you how to access your restored apps on Start menu or taskbar.

Changes and Improvements

[Windows Copilot]

  • The Windows Copilot Preview, which began rolling out with Build 23493, is now available to all Windows Insiders in the Dev Channel. Insiders may need to reboot to have it show up.

[Emoji]

  • With the update of our color font format to COLRv1, Windows is now able to display richer emoji with a 3D like appearance with support coming soon to some apps and browsers. These emoji use gradients to bring the design style that our customers have been asking for. The new emoji will bring more expression to your communications.
Before and after of the updated color format for emoji.

[Voice Access]

  • Voice access is now available via the accessibility flyout on the Lock screen.

[Backup and Restore]

  • In addition to the new Windows Backup app, now you can configure your backup preferences in second-chance out of box experience (SCOOBE), so your apps, settings, creds, and files are backed up in the cloud just the way you want them. You’ll have peace of mind knowing the data you care about is protected and ready for you to restore from any PC.
Configure your backup preferences in second-chance out of box experience (SCOOBE).

[Settings]

  • We have temporarily disabled the new Settings homepage that began rolling out with Build 23493 due to a bug that could cause some instability on Insider’s PCs. We plan to re-enable and roll this back out once that bug is fixed in a future flight.
  • We’ve added 2 additional energy recommendations under Settings > System > Power & battery > Energy recommendations for turning on dark mode and adjusting refresh rate to conserve energy.
2 additional energy recommendations for turning on dark mode and adjusting refresh rate to conserve energy.
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