Cortana and Search split

Windows 10 build 18317 (19H1) releases with new features

There's a new Windows 10 preview (build 18317) for the 19H1 development that splits Cortana and Search into two different experiences and introduces several new changes.

Windows 10 build 18317

Microsoft is now rolling out Windows 10 build 18317 for devices enrolled in the Fast ring of the Windows Insider Program. This is the nineteenth preview releasing as part of the 19H1 development expected to release in March/April time frame.

Windows 10 build 18317 is a minor update, and according to the company, breaks Cortana and Search into two features. The Start menu has now its own process. You can now install new fonts quickly using drag and drop. The Windows Insider Program settings page gets updated. The Windows Console gets a lot of improvements, and more.

Windows 10 build 18317

Here are all the features and changes coming to the next version of Windows 10:

Start menu

Begin with build 18317, the Start menu will appear on its own separate process named: StartMenuExperienceHost.exe. According to the company, this change will simplify debugging and insulating Start from potential issues impacting other surfaces.

Cortana and Search

Although we’ve seen this in previous releases, starting with Windows 10 build 18317, Microsoft is breaking Cortana and Search into two separate experiences in the taskbar.

Cortana and Search two different features on Windows 10 version 1903
Cortana and Search two different features on Windows 10 version 1903

In addition, in the Settings app, you’ll now find two pages, one to control the Cortana settings and another page to configure the search experience.

Fonts

While you’ve always been able to install fonts from a file, begin with version 1903 preview, you’ll find an updated Fonts settings page with an area where you can simply drag and drop font files to install them.

Add Fonts options in the Settings app
Add Fonts options in the Settings app

According to the software maker, using this method will install fonts only for the current user. In order to install the font for all users in the device, use the “Install for all Users” option by right clicking the font on File Explorer.

Windows Insider Program

This flight also includes a new simplified Windows Insider Program page in the Settings app, which aims to remove clutter and move elements around to make it easier to understand and configure.

Windows Insider Program settings page on Windows 10 version 1903
Windows Insider Program settings page on Windows 10 version 1903

Windows Console

The Windows Console is also getting a few improvements with build 18317, including:

  • Corrected sizing issues for Linux alt-buffer apps (for example, vim, emacs, etc.) resulting in more reliable resizing.
  • Made ConPTY flush its output buffer before terminating ensuring apps receive all input and display correct output.
  • When running Tmux, correctly restore state after Windows key + D, resulting in Tmux’s last line of text rendering correctly.
  • If using raster fonts, Console now correctly preserves the user’s font after running .NET Core code (which defaults to UTF-8 codepage 65001)
  • Correct how Console scrolls text region, fixing how text is rendered in Linux’ `screen`
  • Significantly improved performance of ConPTY – perf now very close to “raw pipe”

Additional improvements

Alongside the features and changes, Windows 10 build 18317 includes a few other smaller changes.

For example, starting with this flight, when Scan Mode is on and Narrator is on a slider, the left and right arrows will decrease and increase the slider. Up and down arrows will continue to navigate to the previous or next paragraph or item. Home and End will move the slider to the beginning or the end.

Also, the Narrator list of headings command now works as expected in Chrome, and Narrator now features better support for Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft is listing the complete set of improvements, fixes, and known issues for Windows 10 Insider Preview build 18317 at the Windows Blog.

Download Windows 10 build 18317

Although there are no ISO files for Windows 10 build 18317, the update is available immediately through the Fast ring. This preview build will download and install automatically on your device, but you can always force the update from Settings > Update & security > Windows Update, and clicking the Check for updates button.

Warning: Although the data loss-related issue has been fixed, it’s not recommended to install pre-releases of Windows 10 on your primary machine. If you’re planning to test this build, make sure to create a backup of your files before proceeding.

You can also check out these resources: