Developer and Enterprise Features

Bash shell

At their Build developer conference, Microsoft announced that the Bash shell would be available in Windows 10 with the Anniversary Update, and they have delivered. Bash has been available in the Insider Program for quite a while, so it’s been well tested already. For those wondering why Microsoft would go to the trouble of adding another shell, the goal is to make Windows 10 more friendly for web developers who often have toolchains in Bash.

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Microsoft partnered with Canonical to provide user-mode binaries, so most of the commands which work in Ubuntu will work in Windows 10 as well. The Bash shell is not running Linux in a virtual machine behind the scenes either. This is Ubuntu binaries running on Windows 10.

For those that wanted to leverage open source toolkits but could not do it on Windows before, this should be a nice addition to Windows.

Centennial Apps

Project Centennial is Microsoft’s solution for existing Win32 apps being moved forward to the new Universal Windows App (UWP) platform. With the Anniversary Update, Microsoft is bringing official support for Centennial Apps on Windows 10, where as prior to this it was all part of the testing phase.

Once a Win32 or .NET app has been converted to UWP, it will have the ability to do push notifications and have a Live Tile, just like all UWP apps. The install process is much cleaner, and uninstalling ensures that all traces of the app are gone. A converted Win32 app can be transitioned to the new XAML layout as well, which would allow for scaling of the UI much easier than any sort of DPI method.

Converted apps can also be put in the store, and updated through the store. For those that prefer to offer the app in a more traditional download and install way, the converter creates an AppX package which can be loaded onto any Windows 10 PC.

The app will have a virtualized file system and registry, and it won’t work for apps that have to run as administrator, but there are certainly some upsides to having Win32 apps converted to UWP. We’ll have to see how this goes over time, since it’s a brand new feature. Certainly apps that are no longer developed will never move to this model, it’s a smart way to at least offer the UWP platform to traditional Win32 developers.

Enterprise Features

Microsoft can’t leave out the Enterprise, since that’s a huge part of their business. The Anniversary Update brings some updates here too. Things like Windows Hello which are also usable by consumers will of course be available, but there are a couple of features targeted specifically towards the enterprise.

The first is one that we’ve heard about for about as long as Windows 10 has been around: Windows Information Protection. This feature was previously known as Enterprise Data Protection, and it is a mechanism to prevent data leaks by employees, either wittingly or unwittingly. Files can be designated as Business files based on where they are located, or where they came from, and end-users won’t be able to copy those files or their contents without switching it to a personal file, and whether or not they can do that is controlled by policy through Mobile Device Management or System Center Configuration Manager.

We’ve discussed this in the past, but there’s a great TechNet article now that the feature is being made available with this update.

The other big enterprise feature is Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection, and yes the name is a mouthful. WDATP will help administrators detect, investigate, and respond to attacks to their infrastructure. It combines a client built-in to Windows 10 along with cloud infrastructure to provide tools and dashboards to see what’s going on now, and what’s happened in the past. It should be a powerful tool for IT admins. You can read more at TechNet as well.

Edge and Xbox Tablet Mode changes, Windows Everywhere, and Skype
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  • faizoff - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Most excited for edge extensions, hopefully the update rolls out soon to my PC.
  • retrospooty - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Can I ask why? Not trolling you, just curious as to what you like about Edge. I found it pretty much "meh" and dont know anyone that uses it at all. Granted extensions will help it, but what would that give you over Chrome or any other browser that already has a huge extension library?
  • mphuie - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    If you have a laptop, Edge is a livesaver. Chrome is a huge battery hog. Granted, I still prefer Chrome on the desktop, but Edge is decent. Extensions would make it a whole lot better.
  • retrospooty - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Thanks... That makes sense. I do have a T460s, but I really dont use it on battery a ton, usually docked in the office.
  • Michael Bay - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Agreed. Anything beside Edge on tablet either works woefully slow or eats battery like it`s plugged in.
  • Samus - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Edge is 2 faced for me. Even after following some how to's on performance tweaking Edge, it is inconsistently slow. Sometimes it's faster than anything, sometimes I can't even scroll smoothly.

    There is no doubt it uses less memory than especially chrome though. Chrome spreads itself across task manager like an infection, sometimes running 10 instances for 4 just tabs, no wonder android and chrome devices need so much RAM.
  • JimmiG - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    I use Edge exclusively on my Atom-powered tablet. It's noticeably faster and smoother than the other browsers, and much more touch friendly. However on my desktop and laptop systems I use mostly Vivaldi.
  • Alexvrb - Wednesday, August 3, 2016 - link

    I'm glad they implemented swipe gestures like they had in IE on 8.x. Swiping for back/forward nav is so much easier on a tablet or hybrid.
  • Alexvrb - Wednesday, August 3, 2016 - link

    Edge is MUCH better on battery life. If you need Chromium and are using an untethered device, run Opera instead. Anyway with the new updates Edge seems even better overall, performance is better and it retains the same low memory usage and power efficiency. Heck with extensions I will have less cause to use anything else... even on the desktop. I'll keep FF around too though I think.
  • powerarmour - Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - link

    Chrome isn't a battery hog on a Chromebook... That's purely a 'Windows' thing.

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