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Windows 10 Build 17666 takes us beyond April update with Explorer ‘dark theme’

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For Windows Insiders on the fast ring and those who opted to “Skip Ahead” of the recent April update for Windows 10, the latest build 17666 is now available to download and it adds a number of new features to the Windows experience. Alongside improvements to the Edge browser and a new “clipboard experience,” Microsoft has debuted a dark theme for Windows Explorer.

As clean as white websites and white windows may look, they’re no fun to browse late at night or in darkened environments. While some of the best monitors out there might include anti-blue-light technologies to make late-night viewing easier, dark themes have become increasingly common on websites and applications, and now Microsoft is bringing this concept to Windows Explorer.

With the new Windows Insider build, users will be able to switch to the dark grey theme for folders in Windows by going to Settings – Personalization – Colors. Switching it on will make all Windows folder backgrounds and the UI around them go dark, as will most native Windows applications.

That’s far from all this update offers though. There’s a new “clipboard experience,” which offers a clipboard history — where you can paste copies from the past — a pinnable clipboard that you can come back to later, and the ability to access your clipboard on any Windows PC running the same version of Windows or higher.

Access all of the neat new clipboard features by pressing Windows key + “V.”

Edge enhancements in build 17666 include an acrylic title bar as part of Microsoft’s continued adoption of its Fluent Design principles. You can jump back to recently closed tabs using the “Alt” + “Tab” command now, too, as well as mute tabs individually if they happen to be spouting irritating noise at you.

Improvements to Notepad mean that it now supports Unix/Linux line endings and Macintosh line endings, which means it can now correctly display text documents originally created on a Linux or MacOS platform. If you spot something in these new documents that you don’t understand, you can right-click the text itself and “Search with Bing” from the resulting menu.

When searching for content locally on your machine, Windows now includes much more detailed search previews, so you can see information about an app or document that you’re thinking about booting up. You can even make some of those results easily accessible in the same location, with new Start tile folder naming. Just drag different items together in the same tile and they’ll be lumped together with a customizable name.

Build 17666 also includes a number of bug fixes and performance improvements. For a full preview of what you can expect when installing it, check out Microsoft’s blog post.

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Jon Martindale
Jon Martindale is the Evergreen Coordinator for Computing, overseeing a team of writers addressing all the latest how to…
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