Over the last year, Microsoft has been busy adding new SKUs to Windows 10. Windows 10 S debuted as a separate edition only to be retconned into an operating mode, Windows 10 Business (as part of Microsoft 365), and Windows 10 Pro for Workstations all launched in an attempt to further subdivide the market. In Windows 10 Pro For Workstation, Microsoft went so far as to remove features from Windows 10, in favor of siloing them in a Windows distribution you can’t even buy at retail.
That’s too bad, in our opinion, because the new Ultimate Performance mode coming to Windows 10 Pro for Workgroups sounds pretty awesome. Here’s how Microsoft describes it:
As part of our effort to provide the absolute maximum performance we’re introducing a new power policy called Ultimate Performance. Windows has developed key areas where performance and efficiency tradeoffs are made in the OS. Over time, we’ve amassed a collection of settings which allow the OS to quickly tune the behavior based on user preference, policy, underlying hardware or workload.
This new policy builds on the current High-Performance policy, and it goes a step further to eliminate micro-latencies associated with fine grained power management techniques.
If you have Windows 10 Pro FW, you can enable Ultimate Performance from the same Control Panel/Power options you’d use to set any other power plan. Windows 10 Pro FW is also being updated to remove initial installation preferences that showed consumer software and games by default. Instead, you’ll see an emphasis on productivity and enterprise applications.
We’re curious about the impact of these “Ultimate Performance” changes and are investigating hunting down a copy of the OS. Unfortunately, it’s typically only sold alongside workstation hardware, as opposed to being available at retail.
Other improvements in Build 17101 and 17604 include the ability to decide which UWP (Universal) apps have access to your entire system. This has been a millstone around Universal apps since they debuted as Windows 8 “Metro” apps in 2012. Apps have often been limited to certain directories and either unable to load data from other folders or restricted in the kinds of operations you could perform on files in non-approved locations. Going forward, users will be able to manually decide which UWP apps should be locked down, and which will have system access.
Overall, it looks like a solid set of improvements. The Spring Creators Update isn’t that far away from dropping, so this is the time when MS is likely finishing up features and focusing on bug fixes in preparation for launch.
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