Microsoft unveils new 'Dev Home' and 'Dev Drive' features with faster file system for Windows 11 developers

Windows Dev features
Dev Home provides an overview of your development workstation. (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft is announcing new Windows 11 features built specifically for developers at Build 2023.
  • Dev Home is a new app designed to streamline developer workflows and connect with GitHub, developer tools, coding environments, and more.
  • Dev Drive offers a streamlined storage volume that features better performance and security, based on ReFS.

Microsoft has taken the wraps off two new features coming soon to Windows 11 that are designed to enhance the OS for developers building applications and games at Build 2023. The two new features are Dev Home and Dev Drive, which aim to reduce friction between developers and Windows so users can get to coding quicker.

Dev Home is a brand-new app available in the Microsoft Store and streamlines the setup process for bringing up a new machine as a development environment. Developers can connect to GitHub, configure or execute a WinGet configuration file to download developer tools and programs automatically, and set up a dedicated "Dev Drive" that offers more performance and is more secure.

The new Dev Drive setup wizard. (Image credit: Microsoft)

The new Dev Drive feature is built specifically for developers dealing with projects that contain hundreds or thousands of files. It's a custom storage volume on your existing storage device that's formatted as ReFS (which stands for Resilient File System) and, as a result, brings better performance and security.

Microsoft says the Dev Drive feature will offer up to a 30% file system improvement in build times for file I/O scenarios. Microsoft has unveiled several new features coming to Windows 11 later this year at its Build developer conference, including a new AI copilot, RGB peripheral support, in-box support for archive files like 7zip, and more.

And today, the company has announced that the next Windows 11 feature drop will be available to download starting tomorrow, with improvements to the Taskbar, a new Widgets Board, a new win32 app isolation feature, and more.

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter and Threads