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Microsoft PowerToys updates with new add-ons for Windows 11 File Explorer and modernized UIs for more utilities

 Microsoft PowerToys.
Microsoft PowerToys.

What you need to know

  • Microsoft recently released a new update for PowerToys, bringing it to version 0.76.0.

  • The update ships with many new features, including modernized PowerToys Run, Quick Accent, and Text Extractor UIs.

  • Windows 11 and Windows 10 users will now have access to new File Explorer add-ons.

  • The update also ships with bug fixes and improvements.


Microsoft recently shipped a new update for PowerToys, bumping it to version 0.76.0. The update adds a modern touch and feel to the platform, including modernized UIs for the PowerToys Run, Quick Accent, Text Extractor, and new File Explorer add-ons.

A collection of utilities aimed at power users on Windows, PowerToys continues to integrate new features that improve your experience with the OS.

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POWERTOYS 0.76: WHAT'S NEW

Highlights

  • Upgrade to .NET 8. Thanks @snickler!

  • Keyboard Manager can now remap keys and shortcuts to send sequences of unicode text.

  • Modernized the Keyboard Manager Editor UI. Thanks @dillydylann!

  • Modernized the PowerToys Run, Quick Accent, and Text Extractor UIs. Thanks @niels9001!

  • New File Explorer Add-ons: QOI image Preview Handler and Thumbnail Provider. Thanks @pedrolamas!

General

  • Updated the WebView 2 dependency to 1.0.2088.41. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Fixed unreadable color brushes used across WinUI3 applications for improved accessibility. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Flyouts used across WinUI3 applications are no longer constrained to the application's bounds. Thanks @Jay-o-Way!

  • Upgraded the WPF-UI dependency to preview.9 and then preview.11. Thanks @niels9001 and @pomianowski!

  • Upgraded to .NET 8. Thanks @snickler!

  • Updated the WinAppSDK dependency to 1.4.3.

Awake

  • Added localization to the tray icon context menu.

Crop And Lock

  • Fixed restoring windows that were reparented while maximized.

Environment Variables

  • Fixed crash caused by WinAppSDK version bump by replacing ListView elements with ItemsControl.

FancyZones

  • Reverted a change that caused some applications, like the Windows Calculator, to not snap correctly. (This was a hotfix for 0.75)

  • FancyZones Editor will no longer apply a layout to the current monitor after editing it.

  • Fixed and refactored the code that detected if a window can be snapped. Added tests to it with known application window styles to avoid regressions in the future.

File Explorer add-ons

  • Solved an issue incorrectly detecting encoding when previewing code files preview.

  • Fixed the background color for Gcode preview handler on dark theme. Thanks @pedrolamas!

  • New utilities: Preview Handler and Thumbnail Provider for QOI image files. Thanks @pedrolamas!

  • GCode Thumbnails are now in the 32 bit ARGB format. Thanks @pedrolamas!

  • Added the perceived type to SVG and QOI file thumbnails. Thanks @pedrolamas!

GPO

  • Added the missing Environment Variables utility policy to the .admx and .adml files. (This was a hotfix for 0.75)

  • Fixed some typos and text improvements in the .adml file. Thanks @htcfreek!

Hosts File Editor

  • Added a proper warning when the hosts file is read-only and a button to make it writable. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

Image Resizer

  • Fixed a WPF-UI issue regarding the application's background brushes. Thanks @niels9001!

Installer

  • Included the Text Extractor and Awake localization files in the install process.

Keyboard Manager

  • Modernized the UI with the Fluent design. Thanks @dillydylann!

  • Added the feature to remap keys and shortcuts to arbitrary unicode text sequences.

Mouse Without Borders

  • Removed Thread.Suspend calls when exiting the utility. That call is deprecated, unneeded and was causing a silent crash.

Peek

  • Added the possibility to pause/resume videos with the space bar. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Fixed high CPU usage when idle before initializing the main window. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Implemented Ctrl+W as a shortcut to close Peek. Thanks @Physalis2!

  • Solved an issue incorrectly detecting encoding when previewing code files.

  • Fixed background issues when peeking into HTML files after the WebView 2 upgrade.

PowerToys Run

  • Moved to WPF-UI and redesigned according to Fluent UX principles. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Fixed an issue causing 3rd party plugins to not have their custom settings correctly initialized with default values. (This was a hotfix for 0.75) Thanks @waaverecords!

  • Fixed a crash in the VSCode plugin when the VSCode path had trailing backspaces. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Fixed a crash when trying to load invalid image icons.

  • Fixed a crash in the Programs plugin when getting images for some .lnk files.

  • Fixed a rare startup initialization error and removed cold start operations that were no longer needed. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Improved calculations for Windows File Time and Unix Epoch Time in the DateTime plugin. Thanks @htcfreek!

  • Fixed a crash when trying to get the icon for a link that pointed to no file.

  • Cleaned up code in the WindowWalker plugin improving the logic. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

Quick Accent

  • Moved from ModernWPF to WPF-UI. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Added support to the Finnish language character set. Thanks @davidtlascelles!

  • Added currency symbols for Croatian, Gaeilge, Gàidhlig and Welsh. Thanks @PesBandi!

  • Added a missing Latin letter ꝡ. Thanks @cubedhuang!

  • Added fraction characters. Thanks @PesBandi!

  • Added support to the Danish language character set. Thanks @PesBandi!

  • Added the Kazakhstani Tenge character to the Currencies characters set. Thanks @PesBandi!

  • Renamed Slovakian to Slovak, which is the correct term. Thanks @PesBandi!

  • Added the Greek language character set. Thanks @mcbabo!

Settings

  • When clicking a module's name on the Dashboard, it will navigate to that module's page.

  • Fixed the clipping of information in the Backup and Restore section of the General Settings page. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Updated the File Explorer Add-ons fluent icon. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Added a warning when trying to set a shortcut that might conflict with "Alt Gr" key combinations.

  • Added a direct link to the OOBE's "What's New page" from the main Settings window. Thanks @iakrayna!

  • Changed mentions from Microsoft Docs to Microsoft Learn.

  • Fixed the slow reaction to system theme changes.

Text Extractor

  • Move to WPF-UI, localization and light theme support. Thanks @niels9001!

  • Disabled by default on Windows 11, with a information box on Settings to prefer using the Windows Snipping Tool, which now supports OCR.

Documentation

  • Fixed some typos in the README. Thanks @Asymtode712!

  • Reworked the gpo docs on learn.microsoft.com, adding .admx, registry and Intune information. Thanks @htcfreek!

Development

  • Updated the check-spelling ci action to 0.22. Thanks @jsoref!

  • Refactored the modules data model used between the Settings Dashboard and Flyout.

  • Fixed a flaky interop test that was causing automated CI to hang occasionally.

  • Increased the WebView 2 loading timeout to reduce flakiness in those tests. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Added support for building with the Dev Drive CopyOnWrite feature, increasing build speed. Thanks @pedrolamas!

  • Addressed the C# static analyzers suggestions. Thanks @davidegiacometti!

  • Addressed the C++ static analyzers suggestions.

  • PRs that only contain Markdown or text files changes no longer trigger the full CI. Thanks @snickler!

  • Updated the Microsoft.Windows.CsWinRT to 2.0.4 to fix building with the official Visual Studio 17.8 release.

  • Fixed new code quality issues caught by the official Visual Studio 17.8 release.

  • Added a bot trigger to point contributors to the main new contribution issue on GitHub. Thanks @Aaron-Junker!

  • Removed unneeded entries from expect.txt.

  • Turned off a new feature from Visual Studio that was adding the commit hash to the binary files Product Version.

  • Refactored and reviewed the spellcheck entries into different files. Thanks @Jay-o-Way!

  • Added Spectre mitigation and SHA256 hash creation for some DLLs.

  • Reverted the release pipeline template to a previous release that's stable for shipping PowerToys.

The incorporation of .NET 8 into Microsoft PowerToys is perhaps the biggest change shipping to Windows 11 and Windows 10 users as part of the new update. It's a platform designed to help enhance developer productivity by enhancing performance and stability coupled with security improvements.

Based on the fact that it was released in early November, it's great to see it ship to PowerToys at this early phase. It'll now run faster and smoother.

Do you use Microsoft PowerToys within your workflow in Windows 11? Let us know in the comments.

A collection of utilities aimed at power users on Windows, PowerToys continues to integrate new features that improve your experience with the OS.

Microsoft Store | GitHubView Deal