Windows 10 preview build 17618 rolling out to Skip Ahead Insiders with Sets and more

Windows Update Insider
Windows Update Insider (Image credit: Windows Central)

Fast ring Windows Insiders who opted into the Skip Ahead ring have been patiently waiting for a new build for the past couple of weeks, and now it's finally arrivd. Microsoft has announced Windows 10 preview build 17618 is now rolling out to Skip Ahead Insiders, bringing along the new Sets feature, along with several general changes and improvements. There are also some snags related to Windows Mixed Reality to be aware of.

What's New

  • Sets: Sets is designed to make sure that everything related to your task: relevant webpages, research documents, necessary files, and applications, is connected and available to you in one click. Starting today in RS5 builds, we have turned the Sets experiment back on so any Insider who has opted into Skip Ahead will be able to try out Sets. With Sets, 1st party experiences like Mail, Calendar, OneNote, MSN News, Windows and Microsoft Edge become more integrated to create a seamless experience, so you can get back to what's important and be productive, recapturing that moment, saving time – we believe that's the true value of Sets. Additional app integration with Sets is expected over time.

Windows 10 Sets

If you are an Insider who was testing out Sets previously, you'll find the following improvements to the experience:

  • Support for desktop (Win32) apps. Sets now supports File Explorer, Notepad, Command Prompt, and PowerShell. One of the top feature requests by Insiders has been tabs for File Explorer and with Sets you can get a tabbed File Explorer experience! Try it out with these apps and let us know what you think!
  • You can now launch apps from the new tab page by typing the app name into the search box.
  • UWP apps are launched in the same window replacing the new tab page.
  • The tab UI in Sets now shows icons including website favicons and app icons.
  • Resume your project with more control – When restoring your projects you'll be prompted to restore related apps and webpages. In Timeline you'll see when a project has multiple activities associated with it.

Windows Mixed Reality

  • There are two issues impacting the usability of Windows Mixed Reality on this build. Windows Mixed Reality runs at a very low frame rate (8-10fps) that could result in some physical discomfort. And there are multiple crashes at startup that will cause Windows Mixed Reality to not work. For Insiders who want to keep Windows Mixed Reality working – you might want to consider hitting pause on taking new Insider Preview builds until these issues are fixed. You can pause Insider Preview builds by going to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Insider Program and pressing the "Stop Insider Preview builds" button and choosing "Pause updates for a bit".

General changes, improvements, and fixes for PC

  • We fixed an issue resulting in 3 and 4 finger gestures on the touchpad being unresponsive in the last two flights.
  • We fixed an issue that could result in UWP apps sometimes launching as small white rectangular boxes.
  • We fixed an issue where the Settings tile didn't have a name if you pinned it to Start.
  • We fixed an issue where navigating to Themes Settings crashed Settings.
  • We fixed a typo in Storage Sense Settings.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in all dropdowns in Settings appearing blank until clicked.
  • We fixed an issue that could result in Settings crashing after having navigated to and left Sound Settings.
  • We fixed an issue that could result in the labels for files on the desktop overlapping their icons.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in the hamburger button in Windows Defender overlapping the home button.
  • We've updated Start so that it now follows the new Ease of Access setting to enable or disable hiding scrollbars.
  • We've updated the Action Center so that notifications will now appear with a fade in animation when you open it.
  • We've updated the new notification to fix blurry apps so that it now will persist in the Action Center to be accessed later once the toast has timed out and dismissed.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in some app icons appearing distorted in Task View.
  • We fixed an issue where making a pinch gesture over the open apps in Task View might result in no longer being able to scroll down to Timeline.
  • We fixed an issue where pressing and holding on a card in Timeline would open the corresponding app, rather than bringing up a context menu.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in the title bar overlapping content when you opened your lists in Cortana's notebook.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in the Windows Defender offline scan not working in recent builds.
  • We fixed an issue where the Japanese IME sometimes wouldn't turn on correctly.
  • We fixed an issue where the floating dictation UI could be unexpectedly tiny.
  • We fixed an issue where the touch keyboard might stop invoking automatically after locking the PC and then unlocking the PC by using the touch keyboard to enter your PIN or password.
  • We fixed an issue where the touch keyboard number pad would show the period as a decimal separator for countries that use the comma as a decimal separator.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in not being able to turn on and off third-party IMEs using the touch keyboard.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in numbers not being inserted when flicking up on the top row of letters in the wide touch keyboard layout.
  • We fixed an issue where plugging in an external optical drive (DVD) would cause an Explorer.exe crash.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in DirectAccess not working in recent builds, where the connection would be stuck with status "Connecting".
  • We fixed an issue where all apps in Task Manager's Startup tab had the status "0 suspended".
  • We fixed an issue where after upgrading your speaker volume might change to 67%.
  • We've updated Microsoft Edge's Hub to now have an acrylic navigation pane.
  • We fixed an issue where it wasn't possible to open a new inPrivate window of Microsoft Edge from the taskbar jumplist while in Tablet Mode.
  • We fixed an issue where dragging a Microsoft Edge tab out of the window and releasing hold of it somewhere over the desktop might periodically result in a stuck invisible window.
  • We fixed an issue where the keyboard combo to switch Virtual Desktops didn't work if Microsoft Edge was open on multiple Virtual Desktops and focus was on the web content.
  • We fixed an issue that could result in tabs hanging and not loading content recently in Microsoft Edge after using the browser for a few days with an adblocker enabled.
  • We fixed an issue where clicking to zoom in on an image in Microsoft Edge would zoom into the top left corner rather than the area where you'd clicked.
  • We fixed an issue from the last few flights where Microsoft Edge might crash if you refreshed a window with a PDF open in it.
  • We fixed an issue in Microsoft Edge where favicons in light theme were unexpectedly getting black backgrounds.
  • We fixed an issue where the buttons on Game bar were not centered correctly.
  • We fixed an issue where in some games—such as Destiny 2 and Fortnite—mouse and keyboard input would still go to the game while Game bar was open.
  • We fixed an issue where keyboard and mouse input might not work correctly in Game bar when playing a first-person game (e.g. Minecraft).
  • We fixed an issue in the text box for Mixer stream title, using non-character keys (e.g. Tab, Delete, Backspace, etc.) might cause the game to hang for a few seconds.
  • We fixed an issue where bringing up Game bar using the Xbox button on an Xbox One controller didn't work in some games.
  • We fixed an issue where certain games using Easy Anti Cheat could result in the system experiencing a bugcheck (KMODE_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED).
  • We fixed an issue where we had observed seeing longer-than-normal delays during install at the 88% mark. Some delays were as long as 90 minutes before moving forward.
  • We fixed an issue in apps like Movies & TV where if you deny consent to access your library it crashes the app.
  • We fixed an issue where on post-install at the first user-prompted reboot or shutdown, a small number of devices would experience a scenario wherein the OS fails to load properly and may enter a reboot loop state.
  • We fixed an issue where selecting a notification after taking a screenshot or game clip opens the Xbox app's home screen instead of opening the screenshot or game clip.
  • We fixed an issue where tearing a PDF tab in Microsoft Edge will result in a bugcheck (GSOD).

If you've opted into Skip Ahead, you should be able to grab build 17618 via Windows Update now. And for more, including a look at the known issues in this build, be sure to check out Microsoft's full release notes.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl

  • This means they will be sticking with old FE? How many years does it actually take to develop a new file explorer? Can anyone answer?
  • Wait until Andromeda and Windows on ARM both fail and MSFT gives up. Then they will eventually make a new File Explorer as a last attempt
  • True. It's a harsh truth or may be many may call it pessimistic but at this pace just wait few years Chrome os and Mac os will be the only viable os. Chrome os will replace Windows, Windows will just be in Enterprise (coz of legacy apps).
  • Do you understand how many years it took to shape Windows that is today? Chrome can't just beat it, it's not a phone market.
  • Let's wait and watch.
  • Wait until they do it...and It will take a century more...🤣
  • lmao.... it only means win32 now works with tabs in this build.
  • It's more than replacing the win32 Explorer with a UWP version really. I heard on a Windows Insider podcast that the explorer.exe process is used for more than just the file explorer. They are going to make the UWP api's more powerful so they can tap in deeper OS resources. Only then they can replace the win32 Explorer with a UWP version. Honestly, aside from not being really touch optimized (perhaps an understatement), I'm happy with the current file explorer.
  • I agree but on the other hand FE is a key part of Windows. Even if they made a new one it must have everything of the old and work perfectly from the start. And first of all it can't be UWP because it needs deep integration into the OS. A new updated look and a few tweaks to the UI would be great to begin with.
  • I believe they can keep the internal structure the same but create a UI that closely resembles UWP.
  • I hope they don't touch the file explorer. Its fine the way it is. 
  • I do agree this is old but this doesn't look bad at all. FE looks very fine to me. There are other things for which I'll argue they are not doing enough but not FE.
  • Why on earth would you introduce the same set of flaws in a RS5 build that you JUST GOT DONE FIXING in the RS4 build?  Seriously, Microsoft?  You already KNOW what caused them.  Who's running the show at Redmond?
  • Dona Sarker is running the Windows Insider Program. It's her fault :D
  •, she's really just the liaison for the program.  There are people leading the actual development who have to sign off on the builds.  And there's someone who's REALLY over them, setting the criteria.  I mean, yes, I get that these ARE insider builds.  But, come on, you had some of these exact issues with an earlier RS4 build, for which 17115 FIXED.  If I were in charge I'd be telling the team you don't propose signing off on a RS5 build that hasn't also incorporated those fixes.  There's no rush to get insider builds out, particularly for RS5.  This kind of thing just shows poor judgement on their part.
  • Sometimes fixes are baindaid solutions. This makes sense for RS4 which is close to release. For RS5, they are probably making some more fundamental changes that caused the issue with the first place. These changes were likely reverted for RS4 as the "solution" to the bug. It makes sense to continue developing on the new changes for RS5 which may cause the bug to persist for a while. Quit being so angry online. It's just a Windows build and this website doesn't need more negativity. I'm sure you'll do great as a manager for Windows development if you think so. Apply for the job and tell them all of that instead of vomiting out here.
  • Don't think much otherwise you will stress yourself. Finding logic in decisions (Consumer business) made by MS is just torturing yourself. At MS they have a spinning wheel which managers spin and any random result becomes decision.
  • Because those are two different independant branches with probably different teams that work on them. Anyways, not like those bugs will stay there unfixed forever.
  • Oh, PLEASE.  Right now they are obviously not that different.  In fact, when then created the first fork between RS4 and RS5 they SPECIFICALLY said there was nothing different between them, but simply a version number to separate the two.  So, you can't tell me the fixes they used for 17115 wouldn't be the same fixes they SHOULD have included here.  Sorry, I don't buy it.
  • Doesn't looks werid to you if one team will fix bug and one week later another team has to fix same bug again? For me totally.
  • This kind of branching isn't all that uncommon in software development. If you don't like the skip ahead builds now, you might find a better experience with regular Fast Ring.
  • What Ma Rio and this guy said 👍
  • May be uncommon, but this will result in twice work of developers/testers/feedbackers. The bug Onedrive causing GSOD was fixed in 17115. Now the same bug appeared in Skip Ahead again. The testers of Skip Ahead will be reporting the issue with Onedrive again. Useless traffic will be made. If on Skip Ahead is working different team than on RS4, it will took time for them to fix it, or to use code from RS4. It will slower down the development uselesly. Twice work...But from last years we are getting used to it, that most of Microsoft decisions are senseless.
  • Like the announcement yesterday about the WMR changes.  When Bug Bash started, that should have signaled that Spring Creators Update was feature complete and they wanted to get it all stablized.  They then launched Skip Ahead which should contain new features-breaking changes.  That's not at all what's happened this time.  Bug bash happened, then skip ahead branched, then tons of breaking changes/new features got put into Fast while Skip Ahead is behind on these features.  It makes little sense and there's a good chance that the WMR changes might not get properly tested/fixed before 1803 rolls out.
  • Skip ahead is like the really fast ring right now so this is to be expected
  • Because skip ahead branched off a an earlier build. Fast ring is moving to push out as many fix bugs. Sound like you should just go back to release preview or fast ring.g.
  • And what he said as well 😁
  • I don't get the advantage of sets. Supporting tabs in a window natively is a good thing, but what they want to achieve as restoring ones work environment, I would rather see the possibility to restore a Virtual Desktop with apps and window lay-out.
  • This! 👆
  • Exactly that! 👆
  • Honestly, whenever I try Virtual Desktops, I end up mixing workflows because I get too comfortable in one particular desktop and that defeats the purpose. With Sets, it's not out of sight (and out of mind) because everything is visually present on the taskbar as opposed to being only visible when you click a button that gives you no visual indication of other desktops being present.
  • I can't update both of my computers. It stuck at windows boot logo. I have tried maybe 30 times.
    -virtual machine disabled
    -there is no secure boot function (legacy bios)
    -downloaded latest official insider iso from insider program
    -stuck in 16299.248 version
    -made a clean update. when update downloads I didnt disturbed or rebooted
    -tried all options in the insider program(slow, fast, skip ahead)
    -removed all usb drives physically
    -removed other sata drives that doesn't contain windows data
    Waiting for Microsoft to publish new insider iso. I don't understand why all people can update their computer but I can't. If I'm not wrong microsoft was trying to reduce update datas and aim to what should really needs to change. What happened to it? I am really tired of Satya half assed games.
  • <p>you can&#39;t go from final RS3 to skip ahead you know that.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
  • Amazing how many problems still need to be constantly corrected with Edge. You would think that after all this time, Edge would be beyond perfect and no longer needing fixing.
    And they didn't mention it, but I hope the Store is working after this update. Even since the last Skip Ahead build it has had all kinds of problems updating various apps. I currently have 29 apps stuck in the update list, and there are dozens of reports in the Feedback app from other with the same bug.
    Of all the various parts in Windows 10, two things that have been around since the first build are Edge and the Store, which has been around since 8.0, and both of those should be working perfectly.
  • In Desktop mode, when select More "..." it shows menu scaled to mouse input but when clicked "Settings" it goes back to touch UI, big. Is it a bug or simply UI still not consistent?
  • Windows 10 S and Sets will kill Chrome OS.