Microsoft has released a new update of its PowerToys suite of tools, bumping the version number to 0.45. The team says that the focus of this release is to improve stability and accessibility as well as refine existing features in the tool.
The Redmond giant has also updated the PowerToys settings menu with a new look that will match the design of the upcoming Windows 11 OS, as we reported last week. Another thing to note is that this release includes a bunch of bug fixes and enhancements made to the various tools, such as Awake, FanzyZone, Color Picker, Video Conference Mute, and more.
#PowerToys 0.45 is rolling out now! Stability improvements, bugfixes and a brand new, #Fluent UX for Settings!
Release notes (and download link) here: https://t.co/aLNyTLn0ZB#FluentFriday #FluentDesign pic.twitter.com/Kh30eVPL12
— Niels Laute (@Niels9001) September 3, 2021
Here’s the full list of improvements and fixes in PowerToys version 0.45:
- Removed ModuleImageLink. Thanks @niels9001!
- Replaced theme radiobuttons settings with combobox. Thanks @niels9001!
- Consolidated to one testing framework for C# components of the project. Thanks @davidegiacometti!
- StyleCop and warnings fix. Thanks @davidegiacometti!
- Removed unused namespace alias. Thanks @jakeoeding!
- Standardized .NET JSON on System.Text.Json. Thanks @royvou!
- Fixed various .xaml broken links and icons. Thanks @Jay-o-Way!
- Updated name property in “Edit layout” and “Create custom layout” controls to not include private Unicode characters. Thanks @niels9001!
bitmaskvariable from size_t to uint64_t which will enable PowerToys to support more than 40 zones per layout.
- Adjusted telemetry to better disambiguate when PowerToys Run launches at startup.
- Plugins “Direct activation phrase” setting renamed to “Direct activation string”. Thanks @niels9001!
- Updated environment variables when changed. Thanks @dchristensen!
- Settings and OOBE windows updated with Fluent UX! We hope you enjoy the new modern feel of the application menus as we align our product with upcoming Windows 11 interfaces. Special thanks to @niels9001 for driving the development of this UI, along with many thanks to the various community members who offered constant feedback and adjustments to make this a truly spectacular update!
- Added button to settings which displays version history. Thanks @niels9001!
- Signed PowerToysSetupCustomActions.dll.
- Improved Update available & Update ready message severity visual. Thanks @niels9001!
- Improved auto-update experience. Thanks @niels9001!
- Aligned OOBE theme color with Settings theme color. Thanks @niels9001!
- Adjusted labeling of “Restart as Administrator” button to “Restart PowerToys as Administrator” to avoid ambiguity in meaning. Thanks @niels9001!
- Added colored icons to settings sidebar. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed accessibility issue in OOBE where Microsoft Docs and PowerToys release notes links could not be navigated to via keyboard. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed settings header alignment. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed updates text next being visible when in light mode. Thanks @niels9001!
- Updated “Learn More” text to be more descriptive. Thanks @niels9001!
- Updated “Read more” text on updates to be more descriptive. Thanks @niels9001!
- Added link to documentation in system tray. Thanks @BenConstable9!
- Fixed error caused by file in use issues when installing PowerToys.
- Fixed issue where opening settings from start menu didn’t work when PowerToys was run as admin. Thanks @davidegiacometti!
- Added Awake as option in translation bug template. Thanks @Aaron-Junker!
- Adjusted description of inactive setting to improve distinguishing between the utility being disabled vs inactive. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed bug where changing RGB values doesn’t update color’s HEX value. Thanks @martinchrzan!
- Fixed accessibility issue with screen reader not announcing when “Copied to Clipboard” is activated.
- Fixed accessibility issue where user could not hover the content of the info icon using a mouse. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed color picker format order not being accessible via keyboard. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed accessibility issue where screen reader announces incorrect name for “Editor color format” button and not announcint “Toggle switch” button at all. Thanks @niels9001!
- Adjusted “Save and apply” editor button to adjust with text size for localizations. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed “Create new layout” button visibility when in high contrast mode. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed scaling quirks related to editor UI. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed editor crashing when double clicking the “edit layout” button.
- Fixed issue with editor crashing immediately after displaying zones.
- Fixed bug when navigating editor options via keyboard where pressing enter on unselected Canvas option launches Grid editor instead.
- Fixed issue where FancyZones would not restore Console Applications.
- Fixed Canvas editor and Grid editor window heights. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed crash due to KERNELBASE.dll.
- Fixed FancyZone icons to be smoother at higher DPI settings. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed crash when changing between zone layouts.
- Fixed regression where FancyZones does not resize windows on layout change.
- Adjusted layout settings to reset shortcut key after canceling changes on a particular layout.
File Explorer add-ons
- Fixed issue where markdown files were still previewed even when “Enable Markdown” was unselected.
- Added warning that GIF files with animations may no correctly resize if the encoding used for the files is incompatible.
- Improved UI for KBM re-mappings list. Thanks @niels9001!
- Expanding a plugin option in settings can now be toggled. Thanks @niels9001!
- Fixed race condition causing PowerRename to crash File Explorer. Thanks @ianjoneill!
- Fixed lag caused from PowerToys running in background and invoking Alt-Tab.
- Resolved file not found exception when loading “System.Windows.Controls.Ribbon”.
- Fixed null reference exception crash.
- Fixed registry plugin load crash.
- Fixed unauthorized access exception crash when setting registry keys for the utility.
- Improved visibility of warnings when plugin properties are collapsed. Thanks @niels9001!
- Added search for Plugin Manager. Thanks @davidegiacometti!
- Fixed VSCode workspace plugin not working. Thanks @BenConstable9!
Video Conference Mute
- Fixed toolbar top right vertical offset to allow users to close other app windows.
- Fixed compatibility issues for certain systems when compiling from source.
- Fixed toolbox from persisting on screen.
- Fixed microphone unmuting when changing Video Conference Mute toolbar position.
- Added Video Conference Mute to OOBE.
Microsoft noted that the PowerToys team is planning to release an experimental version of PowerToys next week. Interestingly, PowerToys version 0.46 will bring improvements to the highly awaited Video Conference Mute tool, though there is no concrete information on when it will be available in the stable releases.
As always, PowerToys users will be able to download the latest version of PowerToys from the official GitHub page. Alternatively, existing users can manually update the tool by clicking “Check for updates” directly from the settings menu.