We’ve been seeing multiple Windows 8.1 leaks for the past several weeks, from build 9364 all the way to the 9379. Now there is a new leak, Windows 8.1 build 9385, and it has already emerged in various file sharing sites.
Similar to previous builds, 9385 includes several changes and improvements. For starters, there is a new lock screen app option that will allow Windows 8.1 users to display alarms in the Lock screen.
In Windows 8.1, Internet Explorer 11 receives a new and revamped developer tool (F12) in Metro-style design, pretty much like the user-interface in Office 2013. This is a welcome feature that will benefit web developers to debug and troubleshoot websites.
Finally, IE11 is getting “Inspect Element”, option already in Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera that allows web developers and designers to quickly investigate an element on a web page (it’s worth noting that the option appears in the latest build of Windows 8.1, but it is not working at the moment).
We also previously saw a new feature called “Kiosk Mode”. Now in Windows 8.1 build 9385, this feature seems to have an official name: Assigned access. Basically, with Assigned access, you can select any standard Windows account and configure it to only access one Windows 8 app — probably more useful for Windows PCs in retail stores to showcase product or demos.
This latest build seems more stable than previous leaks, most of the PC settings pages are already populated with all the their corresponding options. Search appears to be in the works as for every search term I get the “Something went wrong” message. And the Movie Moment app, is something I don’t have much detail about, but it does shows a few new options such as Trim it, Say it and Share it, with a short description of each, along with a big Take a video button on the right.
Wrapping things up, the boot-to-desktop and the Start button options still not present in this latest “Blue” build. We are expecting an official Public Preview of Windows Blue by the end of June, during the BUILD developer conference. However, even then we might not see these two options, if not until the final version of Windows 8.1 that Microsoft is planning to ship this year.
Update: Windows 8.1 also brings a new feature that automatically deals with desktop scaling. The feature is turned-on by default (Let Windows manage my display settings), and it basically adjust the screen size and DPI to make text and other desktop items more readable. However the Display page in the Control Panel does not specified if this new setting will also work on a multi-screen setup. Furthermore, doing some of my testing, I discovered that the new desktop scaling feature does not work with a remote session.
In Windows 8.1, Microsoft is releasing PowerShell 4, with a wide range of new commandlets related to networking, storage, Windows Defender, system management and many more — For more details check out Rafael Rivera’s article at Within Windows.