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Windows 10 users could see a performance-enhancing ‘game mode’

A Windows 10 laptop sitting atop a desk.
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Microsoft might have a few surprises in store for us in the coming months, including a new “game mode” for Windows 10. Some keen-eyed Windows Insiders recently spotted a “gamemode.dll” file in a leaked version of Windows 10, but we have yet to see precisely what that file might do and when it will become a part of the Windows 10 experience.

According to MS Power User, you probably should not get your hopes up. Microsoft has its hands full with the Creators Update and probably won’t focus resources on any additional features until after the update rolls out. But the presence of the DLL (dynamic-link library) does suggest that Microsoft has some plans in store for potentially improving gaming performance on Windows 10 in the future.

.@h0x0d looks like Windows will adjust its resource allocation logic (for CPU/Gfx etc.) to prioritize the "Game" when running in "Game Mode"

— WalkingCat (@h0x0d) December 28, 2016

The enthusiast who first spotted the DLL suggested that it might be used to allocate resources more efficiently when games are running, which could improve performance by a considerable margin. It definitely makes sense as part of Microsoft’s larger push to improve gaming on Windows 10 — and keep it intimately tied to the Xbox gaming experience.

As MS Power User points out, the Creators Update is focused on creative professionals, but it will include some major improvements to the overall gaming experience. One such feature ties updated graphics drivers to games downloaded from the Windows Store, making it easier to keep your drivers up to date and reducing reliance on third-party tools to notify you when drivers are available.

This update goes hand in hand with the deepening integration between Windows 10 and the Xbox ecosystem, which already includes expanded support for Xbox peripherals on Windows 10 PCs. Microsoft reportedly has plans to bring Xbox Wireless to the PC in the coming year, including a number of cross-platform peripherals like headsets and controllers.

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Jayce Wagner
Former Digital Trends Contributor
A staff writer for the Computing section, Jayce covers a little bit of everything -- hardware, gaming, and occasionally VR.
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