Windows 11 StagingTool app to enable new features in-development leaks

Microsoft accidentally leaked its StagingTool app to enable and manage in-development features on Windows 11.

StagingTool for Windows 11
StagingTool for Windows 11
  • Microsoft accidentally leaked its internal tool to enable in-development features on Windows 11.
  • It’s known as StagingTool, and it’s a command-line tool similar to the third-party ViveTool.
  • Soon after the leak, the company removed the download link, but it’s already being shared on the internet.

Microsoft’s “StagingTool” is designed to enable the features the company is developing and keeps hidden on Insider preview builds of Windows 11 leaked by accident. The tool was discovered on a quest available through the Feedback Hub in the latest “bug bash” for the operating system.

The quest even included a link to download the StagingTool, but clearly, it was only meant for engineers and other internal testers. Since the tool became known, the company removed the StagingTool, but not before someone downloaded a copy that’s now being shared across the internet.

If you have ever used the ViveTool app to enable and manage hidden features still in production, the StagingTool will look familiar since it virtually provides the same capabilities but with some additional options, as you can see in the screenshot.

Windows 11 StagingTool
Windows 11 StagingTool

The StagingTool offers a command-line interface to manage features using “feature IDs,” which are the same IDs that can be used with the ViveTool, which Rafael Rivera updates and makes available through GitHub every time a new preview is released in the Windows Insider Program.

The reason behind this tool is for Microsoft to perform A/B testing to measure different metrics for specific features and changes. Also, the company hides certain components to prevent users from accessing features that are still rough and are not ready for testing. However, the StagingTool allows you to access the features without any restrictions officially, but of course, you always use the ViveTool third-party app to accomplish the same thing.

Since Microsoft isn’t officially making this tool available for everyone, it’s best to keep using the ViveTool app as it offers the same functionality and it’s available without restrictions.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].