Windows 11 version 21H2 is now available to Insiders in the Beta Channel (previously known as Slow Ring).
As you’re probably aware, Microsoft has released a number of new builds to testers in the Dev channel recently, though the ones in the Beta Channel didn’t receive any new builds after the announcement of Windows 11.
The reason behind the lack of new builds for testers in the Beta channel was due to numerous critical issues with the operating system. For example, in the release notes of one of the preview builds, Microsoft had previously said that a majority of users could run into issues with Explorer.exe if they have the focus assist feature turned off.
In addition to Explorer.exe crashes, there were other critical issues in the previews. The company decided not to release any new builds to the Slow Ring till the problematic bugs were resolved.
Most of the critical bugs are now fixed and Microsoft is finally releasing Windows 11 Build 22000.100 to Insiders in the Beta Ring.
For those unfamiliar, Microsoft offers three channels or rings: Dev, Beta and Release Preview. The Dev channel ring is for users who want update every week and are willing to deal with more bugs and problems. If you’d rather wait for more stable builds, the Beta channel is for you
And finally, we have the Release Preview Channel, which is the most stable of the three and is typically used for the final builds of a major Windows update before it’s released to the public.
Windows 11 enters Beta channel
As mentioned, you can now download and install Windows 11 builds in the Beta Channel of the insider program. There is a catch, however: if you’re not part of the Windows Insider program and your device does not meet the minimum requirements, you won’t receive the new build.
If you want the preview builds on unsupported PCs, simply follow the steps to modify the registry and enroll the device into the Dev Channel. Once you’ve upgraded to Windows 11, you can switch to Beta Channel if you want stable builds.
In a new announcement, Microsoft explained that it’s now a great time to adjust your Windows Insider settings and switch to the beta channel. At one point in the near future, you won’t be able to move to the Beta channel by simply adjusting the settings. To downgrade, Microsoft says you’ll need to clean install Windows 11.
That’s because Microsoft will switch Dev Channel testers to the “pre_release” branch with access to the next big Windows 11 update codenamed “22H2”.
Windows 11 will follow the servicing model of Windows 10, but there will be one big change: Microsoft will release only one feature update a year.
Windows 11 version 22H2, which was confirmed in a support document, will ship in the second half of next year, but testers in the Dev Channel should begin receiving the early bits of the next major update in a few months.
Windows 10 will also get new updates and the next big update is dubbed “version 21H2”, but we don’t know if there’ll be another feature update next year.