Microsoft explains how to use Timeline on Windows 10 (video)

On Windows 10, Timeline is just an experience that allows you to get back to activities you’re working in the past, and during a Mixer webcast, Microsoft demonstrated the feature fully and explained its functionalities.

In the video, the company explains that Timeline is just an extension of Task View that tracks and organizes your devices activities using links. However, these are deep-links to specific content within an app, so you can quickly get back into a task you were working in the past. 

Also, Timeline groups your activities in chronological order by day, showing two rows of your top activities. Of course, you can always expand the group to see all your history for a particular day, which is organized hourly.

Microsoft unveiled during the demo that the activities available in Timeline are not just from one machine. It’s actually a collection of activities across all your devices that are connected with your Microsoft account. In addition, Timeline includes a search button in the top-right corner to complement the scrollbar to help find an activity more quickly.

Timeline on Windows 10 common questions and answers

Alongside the demonstration, Microsoft also answered a lot of common questions about Windows 10’s Timeline, including:

Is it possible to disable Timeline? 

Yes. You can turn off Timeline at any time using the Activity history settings page.

How far back in time can I go back with Timeline? 

Timeline tracks your last 30 days of activities. This is a fixed number, and you can’t change it.

Is it possible to reset the activities in Timeline? 

Yes. You can clear all your Timeline activities using the Settings app.

Can I use a keyboard shortcut to access Timeline? 

Yes. You can use the same keyboard shortcut (Windows key + Tab) to access Task View.

Does Timeline support multi-monitor setup?

Yes. Timeline is part of the Task View experience, but your timeline will only appear in the monitor that you invoked the new experience.

Can I remove activities from Timeline?

Yes. It’s possible to remove individual activities by right-clicking the card and selecting Remove.

Does apps like Word need to be saved to appear in Timeline?

Yes. However, if you configure autosave on Word, the card will be created immediately in your timeline.

Is Timeline on Windows 10 a US only or global feature? 

It’s a global feature. Timeline works on every edition of Windows 10 that uses a Microsoft account.

How does Timeline work across devices?

The same infrastructure is present on all your machines running Windows 10. As you start using your device, supported applications will create an activity card as you use them. These activities are then collected and uploaded to the cloud, and then synchronized across devices.

Does Timeline work with multiple Microsoft accounts?

Yes. It’s possible to view activities from different Microsoft accounts, but advanced configurations need to be set.

Does Timeline work with iOS and Android?

Sort of. Microsoft isn’t clear about Timeline coming to iOS and Android, but applications, such as those from Office can interact with Timeline.

Will an activity appear on a second machine even when the app isn’t installed?

Yes. If you start working on a Word document on your primary PC, the activity will appear in a secondary machine, even though, Office isn’t installed.

Can I still access Task View with Timeline?

Yes. Timeline is actually part of Task View, so you can still access your running apps and virtual desktops.

Can I exclude an app to appear in Timeline?


Can I check Timeline on the web?


Can I adjust the amount of days Timeline tracks?


Wrapping things up

Timeline was a originally a feature planned to arrive with Windows 10 version 1709 (Fall Creators Update), but it was pushed at the eleventh hour. Now, Microsoft is promising that it’ll ship with Windows 10 version 1803 expected to arrive in Spring of 2018, with a preview of Timeline arriving soon to participants of the Windows Insider Preview program.

What do you think about Timeline? Tell us in the comments.