Microsoft Edge Dev can now turn the desktop Web widget into a pinned sidebar

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Microsoft has released the build 97.0.1069.0 for the Edge Dev channel, which brings an interesting change to the way the Edge Bar works. Most Edge users are probably not familiar with it, but the Edge Bar is a desktop Edge widget that lets users access Bing search and get news and weather updates without opening the full browser.

With this latest Edge Dev update, the Edge bar can now be pinned as a persistent sidebar on the web browser. To do this, users will need to click the pin icon available in the button right corner of the screen (as shown below), and the Edge bar will appear as a vertical column that you may or may not find very useful.

Microsoft edge dev can now turn the desktop web widget into a pinned sidebar - onmsft. Com - november 10, 2021

Additionally, Microsoft has also enabled a dedicated Extensions menu in the toolbar by default that offers a more organized way to manage the installed extensions in the browser. This new Edge Dev update brings the ability to register the browser as a handler for XML files in Settings. There are also some management policies updates to control Screen Capture, Edge Discover, and more.

The latest Microsoft Edge Dev build brings plenty of reliability improvements and changed behaviors, and you can check out the full list of feature updates below:

  • Added the ability to pin the Edge bar to either side of the screen.
  • Enabled the Extensions menu by default.  Note that this has also been enabled in version 96, which is currently in Beta.
  • Added the ability for the browser to register as a handler for XML files in the OS settings.
  • Management policies (note that updates to documentation and administrative templates may not have occurred yet):
    • Added a management policy to control if Edge Discover is Enabled, which controls if Bing is allowed to search in the background for content related to the current page.
    • Enabled support for management policies from Chromium to control Screen Capture in more granular ways:  by setting Screen Capture Allowed By Origins, Window Capture Allowed By Origins, Tab Capture Allowed By Origins, and Same Origin Tab Capture Allowed By Origins.
    • Enabled support for management policies from Chromium to set Serial Allow All Ports For Urls and Serial Allow Usb Devices For Urls.
  • Added an experimental API to WebView2 apps to allow any website to be displayed in an iframe (Issue 1243).

The Edge Insider team also announced that it's planning to release the last Edge 97 build next week, and there might be some delay before this version heads to the Beta channel due to the upcoming holiday season. "Additionally, we’ll be taking some time off from these announcements during December, so there will be some releases during that time that we won’t be talking about, but they’ll still be happening," the Edge Insider team explained.

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