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Microsoft already delivering a new Windows 10 beta update

Some fixes and improvements are introduced, and the company offers an update on initial feedback.

Windows 10
Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft said it would offer frequent updates to the beta of Windows 10, and now it's delivering. The company announced the availability of a new build, number 9860, with some new features, fixes, and an update on where things stand on the software's development.

Gabe Aul, engineering technical manager at Microsoft, said in a new post to Blogging Windows that there will be many more.

"Sometimes they'll be more frequent and sometimes there will be longer gaps, but they will always be chock full of changes and improvements, as well as some bugs and things that are not quite done," he wrote. "As we've said, we're sharing stuff early and moving quickly to do so. In fact, the build that we're rolling out today is something that we ourselves only got a little over a week ago!"

This latest build will come to you automatically via Windows Update, which will download and install the new build overnight. If you can't wait, go to the PC Settings in the control panel (accessed via Winkey-I) and select Update and Recovery, then Preview builds and click the Check Now button. That will kick off an update.

The update will be between 2GB and 2.74GB, depending on your CPU architecture and language. Microsoft has definitely been busy since the Technical Preview, which was build 9481. In the 379 builds between the first and second previews, Microsoft said it has made more than 7,000 changes, although that likely includes every single tweak of language and UI.

The most important addition to this new build is the notification center, which will be called Action Center. Like on Windows Phone, this will be the single place for all notifications: instant messages, email, Facebook updates, and so on. Aul said this component is still in a rough state and a cleaner UI will come later.

The new build also adds a command to move apps quickly from one monitor to another, for users with multiple monitors or those who are moving apps around virtual desktops. There is also an animation when switching virtual desktops so you know the activity is taking place.

Also with this build, Microsoft is adding the option for slow or fast updates. Microsoft has added this option so corporate and IT managers can slow down the rollout of software updates. Microsoft is promising faster updates to the OS when it's eventually finished, but corporate users may not necessarily want that. So this feature gives you the option of a fast update, which will be installed the day it comes out, or a slow update, which is at a later date.

And Microsoft is indeed listening. The company has gotten more than 250,000 pieces of feedback via the Windows Feedback tool, 25,381 community forum posts, and 641 suggestions in the Windows Suggestion Box, Aul said. The latter category is where users have been busy suggesting new features for Windows 10.

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