A search bar is among the Task Manager improvements in new Windows 11 build

Enlarge / Microsoft is testing a search bar for Windows 11’s new Task Manager.


One of the Windows 11 22H2 update’s improvements was a redesigned Task Manager with a reorganized user interface, an updated Windows 11-style look, and other features. Laying that foundation has apparently given Microsoft the latitude to work on other Task Manager improvements, some of which cropped up in this week’s preview build for Windows Insiders in the Beta channel.

The most significant of these changes is a new search bar for running processes, so you can more easily bring up specific processes you’re looking for while excluding the rest. This is useful for organizational and aesthetic purposes—it can find needles in haystacks while also clearing away the hay so that you don’t drop the needle and lose it again.

The new Task Manager’s dark mode support can also be toggled independently of the theme setting you’re using for Windows. Those themes will be applied Task Manager as well as the pop-ups within it. And the toggle for Efficiency mode now includes a “don’t ask me again” checkbox if you regularly switch individual processes into and out of Efficiency mode and you don’t want to be asked for confirmation every time.

We don’t know when (or if) these changes will make it into the public builds of Windows 11. Microsoft often uses the Windows Insider channels to A/B test multiple versions of a feature or to gather data on still-in-progress changes that can disappear without being officially released.

But the changes’ presence in the Beta channel implies that they’ll eventually be released as a minor update to Windows 11 22H2 in the next few months. The more experimental Dev channel has moved on to an entirely new major build number of Windows 11, implying that it will eventually become the foundation for the Windows 11 23H2 update at some point next year.

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