Windows 10 – The best features of the May 2019 Update REVEALED

Windows 10 – The best features of the May 2019 Update REVEALED

- in Technology

The first substantial new iteration of Windows 10 in 2019 is dubbed the May 2019 Update (Image: Microsoft)

Windows 10 is Microsoft’s computer operating system that is harnessed by computers across the globe.

The software typically receives two updates a year – in 2018 these arrived in April and October respectively.

This year, the first substantial new iteration of Windows 10 is dubbed the May 2019 Update and will release, as the name suggests, for all users next month.

Microsoft recently released the final build of the Windows 10 May 2019 Update to those in the Release Preview ring ahead of its full debut.

The American tech giant’s new software comes with myriad features that looks set to improve Windows 10 overall.

With that said, here is’s collated list of the best new additions.

Windows Sandbox

Windows Sandbox is a new piece of software within Windows 10 that will run an isolated desktop environment that can be harnessed to test “untrusted” programmes.

Essentially, the idea behind Sandbox is if an opened application does contain harmful materials it will not have an adverse impact on the user’s device.

Discussing the addition, Microsoft said: “Windows Sandbox is a new lightweight desktop environment tailored for safely running applications in isolation.

“How many times have you downloaded an executable file, but were afraid to run it? Have you ever been in a situation which required a clean installation of Windows, but didn’t want to set up a virtual machine?

“At Microsoft, we regularly encounter these situations, so we developed Windows Sandbox: an isolated desktop environment where you can run untrusted software without the fear of lasting impact to your device.

“Any software installed in Windows Sandbox stays only in the sandbox and cannot affect your host. Once Windows Sandbox is closed, all the software with all of its files and state are permanently deleted.”

Windows 10 May 2019 Update

Windows Sandbox is one of the biggest new additions to Windows 10 (Image: Microsoft)

New Start menu

The Windows 10 May 2019 Update will introduce a “simplified default Start layout for new devices”, according to Microsoft.

The American tech giant has insisted the signature menu will have a “one column design” that should be more accessible for fans overall.

Discussing the functionality, Microsoft stated: “Based on your feedback, we’re introducing a simplified default Start layout for new devices, new user accounts, and clean installs.

“The new layout has been simplified into a sleek one column design with reduced top-level tiles.

“Coupled with earlier changes providing the ability to uninstall additional inbox apps, and a new way to easily to unpin a folder or group of tiles, the simplified Start layout is part of an ongoing effort designed to enhance your Start experience in the upcoming release of Windows.”

Windows 10 update

The new Start menu will have a ‘one column design’ (Image: Microsoft)

Search and Cortana have been separated

The new version of Windows 10 decouples Search and Cortana, meaning users now have a more defined way to access either.

Previously, the virtual assistant’s functionality was embedded inside the Search bar along the bottom panel of the Microsoft software.

But now a dedicated button for Cortana has been placed next to the box – Microsoft said such a decision would allow both to “innovate independently”.

The tech firm went on: “Going forward, we’ll be decoupling Search and Cortana in the taskbar.

“This will enable each experience to innovate independently to best serve their target audiences and use cases. Some Insiders have had this update for a few weeks now, and we appreciate all the feedback we’ve received about it so far!

“For those new to this update, when it rolls out to you, you’ll find clicking the search box in the taskbar now launches our experience focused on giving you the best in house search experience and clicking the Cortana icon will launch you straight into our voice-first digital assistant experience.”

Windows 10 update

Search and Cortana are separated in the May 2019 Update (Image: Microsoft)

Windows 10 reserved storage

While not a new feature per se, it is worth noting the May 2019 Update will reserve around 7GB of storage or more to ensure “critical OS functions always have access to disk space”, according to Microsoft.

Users will not be able to remove the reserved space from Windows 10.

Discussing its reasoning for the change, Microsoft remarked: “Starting with the next major update we’re making a few changes to how Windows 10 manages disk space. Through reserved storage, some disk space will be set aside to be used by updates, apps, temporary files, and system caches.

“Our goal is to improve the day-to-day function of your PC by ensuring critical OS functions always have access to disk space. Without reserved storage, if a user almost fills up her or his storage, several Windows and application scenarios become unreliable.

“Windows and application scenarios may not work as expected if they need free space to function. With reserved storage, updates, apps, temporary files, and caches are less likely to take away from valuable free space and should continue to operate as expected.

“Reserved storage will be introduced automatically on devices that come with version 1903 pre-installed or those where 1903 was clean installed. You don’t need to set anything up—this process will automatically run in the background. The rest of this blog post will share additional details on how reserved storage can help optimise your device.”

Removing buggy updates

The Windows 10 May 2019 Update will be able to remove updates that are buggy to the point where they may prevent a PC from booting up in a proper fashion.

Essentially, if the software is unable to start up as normal, it will check to see if any recent updates may have been responsible.

If this is the case the software will uninstall the updates in question and prevent them from being added again for 30 days.

Windows 10 will also show a message that reads “We removed some recently installed updates to recover your device from a startup failure” if this process has taken place.

Discussing the helpful addition, Microsoft stated: “Occasionally, startup failures can occur due to hardware issues, file corruption, or incompatible third-party software.

“If Windows detects that your machine cannot start up successfully, it will try to diagnose and resolve failures due to disk issues, system file corruption, invalid registry keys, or other such causes.

“If all these steps are unsuccessful and your machine is still unable to start up properly, Windows will determine if the startup issue was introduced after recent driver or quality updates were installed.

“If so, these updates may be uninstalled automatically to get the device back to a workable state. This is only done as a last resort.”

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