Before Windows 11, I tried as much as possible to emulate a more refined look on Windows 10 using extra apps and Windows Registry edits. Now that Windows 11 is here, I am pumped that I don't have to use extra apps, like TaskBarX to center my Taskbar, or search endlessly for complicated Windows Registry edits to change or remove the amount of information displayed in "quick settings (formerly known as Action Center)."
With Windows 11, all you need to do is change a few options in settings and you are good to go. Let's take a look at what you need to do to change the settings in the Taskbar, Notification Center, and Quick settings.
The new Windows 11 taskbar comes centered by default, but you can change it back to the being aligned to the left. You can right-click any icon on the taskbar and choose "unpin," or alternatively, right-click anywhere on the taskbar to be taken directly to the settings.
But, in order to reach the menu on Windows 11, follow these steps.
1. Go to Settings (Windows key + I)
2. Go to Personalization
3. Go to Taskbar
4. Change your taskbar how you want
From the Taskbar menu, you can change the ability to show or hide the icons that appear, icons that appear on the corner of your taskbar, show or hide icons of programs running in the background, as well as alignment, badging, automatically hide, and multiple display setup.
On this current Windows Insider build, the settings are minimal and don't allow you to make any drastic changes. Another thing to keep in mind is that Microsoft may add and/or remove settings from these menus, so this guide may change in the future.
When you need to change the notification center settings, there is no dedicated menu in the settings menu. You will need to follow these steps.
1. Go to Settings (Windows key + I)
2. Go to System
3. Go to Notifications
Once here, you can choose to toggle on or off notifications and change what apps you receive notifications from. There is also a separate menu for Focus assist.
In case you forgot, Focus assist was called quiet hours in earlier versions of Windows 10. Whatever it's called, I still don't use it, but you can use it to stop yourself from being distracted by setting specific times when you can and cannot receive your notifications.
Quick settings does not have a dedicated menu in settings. You can pull the quick settings menu up by using a single keyboard shortcut; Windows key + A. In Windows 10, this keyboard shortcut would open Action Center, so it is safe to say that Microsoft decided to replace Action Center with "quick settings" on Windows 11.
Other ways of opening the quick settings menu is by using touch to tap or your mouse to click any icon displayed in the right corner of your Windows 11 desktop. A good example would be the Wi-Fi symbol as shown.
Quick settings on Windows 11 replaces the functionality of the Action Center on Windows 10. It provides a "quick" look at the following:
3. Airplane mode
4. Night light
5. Focus assist
6. Accessibility menu
7. Connect (to connect to a second display wirelessly)
8. Keyboard layout
9. Mobile hotspot
10. Nearby sharing
11. Project (to project your image onto a second display)
12. Volume Slider
13. Quick settings menu customization (pencil icon)
14. Shortcut to full Windows settings menu (gear icon)
If you use the quick settings customization menu (pencil icon), you can add or remove which settings appear in quick settings. Depending on your use case, you might not need any or all of these icons.
It's also important to keep in mind that Microsoft may add or remove these and other options at any point in future Windows Insider builds.
Be sure to check out our recent hands-on on Windows 11 Build 22000.51 by our own Cody Carson. If you are looking to see and hear more from Cody, you can check him out discussing all things Windows 11 with Arif Bacchus In a special OnPodcast episode.
What types of changes do you want to see from Microsoft in the settings menu on Windows 11? Let us know in the comments!