Even as we wait for the Windows 10 Creators Update to receive its mainstream launch this coming Tuesday, Microsoft has pushed ahead and shipped the first post-Creators Update preview build of Windows 10. The next major version of Windows doesn’t have a name yet, but its codename is Redstone 3, and it’ll be released in about six months.
Coming so soon after the Creators Update, precious little is visibly different in the new build. Earlier in the week, Microsoft said that it’s using these initial builds to make various process improvements to its internal development and engineering processes; this work changes how Windows is built without much changing what gets built.
As such, the new build fixes some bugs and changes the share icon used in Explorer and, er, not a whole lot else.
We’d expect that Microsoft will use its Build developer event in Seattle next month to make the grand reveal of Redstone 3 features. We do know a few things already: Redstone 3 will enable the mixed-reality user interface (used by virtual reality headsets and HoloLens) by default (rather than requiring developer mode to be enabled, as is the case in the Creators Update). It is also expected to include the “My People” feature that was originally planned and announced for the Creators Update before being delayed until the next major update.
However, this new build does mark the start of the Windows Insider Program for Business (“WIP4Biz”) first announced back in February. IT departments have told Microsoft that they want to be able to deploy Insider builds to certain users within their companies for evaluation and testing. Previously, that required linking one’s Windows account to a Microsoft account, offering no real means of oversight or control for administrators. IT departments want better tools so that, for example, they can see what feedback and issues are being reported by their test users.
Today’s build doesn’t include such tooling—that’s still being developed—but it does light up the first piece of WIP4Biz functionality. A Microsoft account is no longer required to enroll a device in the Insider Program. Corporate credentials can now be used, too, as long as an organization is using Azure Active Directory. Accounts must be registered here. Beyond that, the process and experience should be much the same as it is when using a Microsoft account.