Windows 10 development briefing: Windows Subsystem for Linux, Alexa on lock screen, many other changes #wintendev


Hi all,


Before Windows 10 birthday passes away, I thought it would be best to present what to expect for the next while in terms of Windows 10 development. For those who have recently joined us, development briefings like the one below is a way to present info on what to expect in the future.


Note: today’s briefing packs two future feature updates: 19H2 (later this year) and 20H1 (next year). Due to massive changes, I might not cover all things you need to know – additional things will be covered in future briefings.


Windows 10 development briefing for July 29, 2019:

Build: 18945 (20H1)/18362.10006 (19H2)



  • Build range: 20H1 is 18900 series at the moment, although I expect the final build will be in 19000 range. Because of scope, 19H2 uses 18362, although Xbox One builds have moved onto 18363, so I expect PC build to advance to 18363 or higher at some point.
  • Availibility: fast ring (including skip ahead subset) is on 20H1, slow ring is on 19H2, and everyone else is on 1903 (or in the process of joining us on 1903).


Microsoft Edge:

  • When will the switch to Chromium occur: evidence points to 20H1.


Cortana and search:

  • User interface: completely revamped in 20H1, with evidence pointing to Cortana receiving capabilities independently of feature updates.
  • Voice assistants on lock screen: 19H2 introduces ability to use a different voice assistant from lock screen (for example, using Amazon Alexa instead of Cortana).


File Explorer and shell:

  • Search experience: search interface in 20H1 File Explorer has been revamped, now powered by a more modern-looking interface, which ultimately comes from Windows Search.
  • Date and time flyout: in 20H1, you can now create events straight from date and time flyout (Windows+Alt+D).



  • Time and language: under language section, status on system language and others will be shown prominently.


Microsoft Account:

  • Password-less sign in is now possible (using a Windows Hello pin and other authentication methods).


Windows Subsystem for Linux:

  • Change of mechanics: instead of emulating system calls, Windows Subsystem for Linux generation 2 (20H1) will ship with a customized, virtualized Linux kernel which will receive updates just like any cumulative update.



  • Skip unnecessary elements such as unnecessary tables while reading emails in Mail app.
  • Narrator can now describe webpages as it loads.


There are tons of other changes here and there.


The next briefing will be sent in late August.