- Microsoft rolls out a preview of the Dev Home app for Windows 11.
- The app has been designed to help developers work more efficiently while building new experiences.
- In addition, the Windows Terminal is getting AI integration with the GitHub Copilot X.
- Finally, Windows 11 is also getting native support to open tar, 7-zip, rar, gz, and more.
Microsoft introduces “Dev Home,” a new app for Windows 11 that will improve how developers set up, test, and build applications. According to the official announcement, the app will streamline the workflow with several new features, including using the Windows Package Manager (winget) command tool to make it easier and faster to set up a development environment and the new “Dev Drive” feature for better file system performance and a new dashboard to track your workflow.
According to the company, the new experience will make it easy to connect to GitHub and set up your machine to code, including installing the tools and packages you need. In addition, you can also use the app to configure your coding environments in the cloud using Microsoft Dev Box and GitHub Codespaces.
You can use the Dev Home app to set up a computer for development in minutes using the winget integration that allows you to create an unattended file configuration to set up a new Windows 11 machine quickly, removing the worry of searching for the correct version of software, packages, tools, and frameworks to download or settings to apply. Once you set up the unattended file, you only have to run the “winget configure” command.
In addition, the app also introduces a new “Dev Drive” experience that allows developers to create virtual hard disks using the Resilient File System (ReFS), which, combined with a unique performance mode capability in Microsoft Defender for Antivirus, offers up to 30 percent file system improvement in build times for file I/O scenarios. The new performance mode is more secure than a folder or process exclusions. However, it appears that the “Dev Drive” isn’t a feature of the “Dev Home” app. Instead, it’s a link to the “Disks & volumes” settings that will now feature the ability to create ReFS virtual drives.
Finally, the app features a customizable dashboard to help you manage any project, including those that involve Windows, cloud, web, mobile, or AI.
Furthermore, the app also supports GitHub widgets to efficiently track all coding tasks or pull requests and projects from one central location and system widgets to track CPU and GPU performance. Microsoft says it is working with Team Xbox to bring the GDK to Dev Home to make it easy to start game creation.
Dev Home is an open-source application, which means that the community will be able to provide input to improve the experience over time. You can download a preview of the app now from the Microsoft Store.
Windows Terminal with AI
In addition to the new app, Microsoft also announced that the Windows Terminal is getting AI integration with the GitHub Copilot X. Users with access to the GitHub Copilot experience will be able to use the natural language AI both inline and in an experimental chat experience to recommend commands, explain errors and take actions inside the Windows Terminal.
As part of the Windows Terminal improvements, the company is adding tab tear-out, allowing you can easily organize your different shells into windows.
You can sign up to get early access to the Copilot Hub at GitHub.
Windows 11 with libarchive integration
Even further, the company is highlighting several new features and changes on Windows 11 that should help developers in their workflow. For example, users will soon be able to show app labels in the Taskbar, hide the time and date from the System Tray, and quickly shut down applications with a new option available when right-clicking an app button in the Taskbar.
Also, the team is integrating the libarchive open-source project into Windows 11 to bring native support to open additional archive formats, including tar, 7-zip, rar, gz and many others.