Windows 10 is set to receive a new major update in April. officially started. Named 20H1 or version 2004, this is supposed to be a more significant upgrade than last year’s November update (19H2).
It’s best that you wait for it to be released via Windows Update, as Microsoft is still working on squashing bugs and polishing the release for delivery.
One the most interesting features included in Windows 10 version 2004 is if you need to use “Reset this PC,” you now have the option for a cloud download to perform a reinstall of Windows.
Keep in mind that Reset this PC using the cloud doesn’t do a factory reset, but the download option will reinstall the current version of Windows instead of the one that came with your device.
Besides saving you the trouble of having a USB drive at the ready for recovering your PC, the new version of Windows will make it possible to use your Windows Hello PIN in Safe Mode for faster login.
Microsoft has also added improvements in the form of keyboard shortcuts for the Ease of Access dialog (Shift + Alt + Print Screen) and entering/exiting full screen mode (Ctrl + Alt + Break).
There are other functional updates, such as the ability to rename Virtual Desktops.
With version 2004, your Virtual Desktops and their custom names are retained after reboot. If you use apps like Mail, Calendar, and OneNote they’ll also be restarted minimized, in a suspended state, on reboot.
Microsoft has been working on improving Windows Settings, moving stuff from the legacy Control Panel putting things in places that make the most sense. In the April 2020 update you can see all Language settings in one place within an overview section, and get quick access to individual ones like the display language, app language, speech settings, keyboard, and regional format through their respective tiles.
Notification settings have proven particularly difficult for users to discover on their own, so toast notifications will have inline options to either turn off all notifications for that app or head directly to the app’s notification settings. You can also disable sound for notifications and hunt for a specific app that’s bugging you. Microsoft is adding a shortcut to manage notifications at the top of the Action Center.
The ‘Network status’ page under Network & Internet has been consolidated. On similar fashion, the ‘Optional features’ page has been improved so you can select and install multiple features at the same time, sort them, and do that without leaving the main page in the “Latest actions” section. Notepad, WordPad, and Paint are now optional features in Windows 10 and can be uninstalled.
Bluetooth quick-pairing can now be done right from the notification itself, and the toast will sometimes show the name and category of the device being connected.
Cortana has been completely migrated into its own Store app that’s undocked from the taskbar, and is now essentially a chat bot for managing your schedule and tasks.
After decoupling Cortana from Windows Search, Microsoft has overhauled Search to offer quick access to your most used apps, recently-accessed documents, a tabbed interface for filtering results, and quick search suggestions.
There’s automated spell correction that will be applied whenever you misspell the name of something that Windows Search has indexed and can recognize based on what you have typed in the search box.
File Search also now governs the search box in File Explorer, which means it’ll offer search suggestions from local and OneDrive files in a drop-down.
Another feature of Windows 10 2004 (20H1) is an update to the Desktop Window Manager (DWM) that brings improved multiple monitor support when two monitors have mismatched refresh rates. For example, if you have a main gaming monitor running at a high refresh rate and a secondary display running at 60Hz, usually Windows would stutter and show frame-skips, but with hardware-accelerated GPU scheduling in WDDM 2.7, this seems to have been solved.
Speaking of graphics, the upcoming Windows update will also add GPU temperature monitoring to the Task Manager if your hardware supports it. You’ll find this information in the Performance tab along with other useful metrics we’re used to see such as CPU utilization and network activity.
Will drop back with an update on what the 2004 actually does to my computer.