Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494 fixes some Taskbar, Explorer bugs and adds a Mute Mic button

Nov 5, 2021

One of the many quirks in Windows 11 is the Taskbar bug, which causes tool-tips to appear randomly when you mouse over the system tray and back to a different area on the Taskbar. Microsoft has fixed this issue with the release of Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494.

Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494

The update is live for testers on the Developer Channel. Some of you had commented about the bug, but for those who don't know what it is, here's an animated GIF.

windows 11 taskbar bug demo

I have been using the latest preview build on my virtual machine for a day, and can confirm that it has fixed the anoying taskbar bug. The announcement for the new build mentions another fix related to the Taskbar, it patches a bug that led to duplication of icons in the Taskbar's corner.

Mute and unmute your mic from the Taskbar

The previous Insider Preview build introduced a new way to control the volume, by scrolling the mouse wheel over the system tray icon. Windows 11 Build 22494 lets you mute your computer's microphone directly from the taskbar. There's a huge caveat here, this feature seems to be exclusive for Microsoft Teams, at least for now. When you join a call on Teams, the mic icon will appear on the tray, click on it to mute and unmute it.

Mute and unmute your mic from the Taskbar

Image credit: Microsoft

There's something else I should mention, the mute option only works with the regular Microsoft Teams app, and not the Chat Teams app that is bundled in Windows 11. Well, if you're one of the folks who are using it for working/studying from home, you should find the option useful.

Snap Groups in Alt + Tab and Task View

The new Windows 11 build will show Snap Groups in the Alt + Tab and Task View screens. Microsoft says that this option isn't available for all users, only some Insiders have this option.


The Apps & Features section in the settings app, has been renamed. Well, technically it has been split into two sections: Installed Apps, and Advanced App Settings.

Windows 11 installed apps and advanced app settings

The former has some new options to change the view: List, Grid and a Smaller Grid.

Here's the larger grid view, looks very touch-screen friendly, doesn't it?

Windows 11 installed apps grid view

And this is the other one.

Windows 11 installed apps small grid view

Windows 11 installed apps screen

The Advanced App Settings screen houses options to Choose where to get apps, Share across devices, App execution aliases, Archive apps. It also has an Uninstall Updates option, which I thought would allow us to uninstall app updates, but it just takes you to the Windows Update History section.

Windows 11 advanced app settings

The Default apps' search bar now displays a drop-down list as you type the letters of the file type or link type, i.e. you don't have to type the full extension and hit enter.

File Explorer

File Explorer has a bunch of fixes that address problems related to the context menu crashing, sub-menu drawing on top of the current menu, blurry context menu icons, the open with menu opening files directly, and the performance of command bar actions. Files on the Desktop can now be renamed directly on the homepage, the previous build didn't allow users to do this and they had to edit the names from the Desktop folder in File Explorer.

Explorer should no longer crash when using Snap, Alt Tab or Virtual Desktops. Storage Sense will clean up the SystemTemp folder as expected. The Search function's performance has been improved, apparently the indexer database was being fragmented, which in turn was causing high memory and CPU usage, especially for people with large Outlook mailboxes.

A black screen problem which prevented the lock screen from being displayed, after the computer came out of sleep, has been resolved. The latest build also patches the WSL: Fixed error 0x8007010b, that occurred when users tried to access Linux distributions using the subsystem, i.e., \\wsl.localhost or \\wsl$

KB5008295 Update for Windows 11 Beta and Release Preview Channels

Microsoft has released the KB5008295 Update for Windows 11 Beta and Release Preview Channels. The update fixes an issue that prevented some apps from opening, this includes the following apps:

  • Snipping Tool
  • Touch Keyboard, Voice Typing, and Emoji Panel
  • Input Method Editor user interface (IME UI)
  • Getting started and Tip

Some users who got an error while opening the apps tried to roll back the clock to a previous date as a workaround. But you don't need to do that with this update. The release notes says that a Microsoft digital certificate that expired on October 31st, 2021, caused the issue. The update also fixes a problem with S-Mode, which prevented the Start Menu and Settings app from opening. The update does not bump the firmware version number, you may check the Windows Update History to see if the patch has been installed on your computer.

The performance improvements seem to be good, I can notice a slight difference in the Search function's speed. The context menu is still unimpressive (I'm using it with the Accessibility > Animations turned off). The mute mic option looks useful, but Microsoft needs to make it a global shortcut, instead of restricting it to teams. A double click to mute the speaker volume would be nice too, wouldn't you agree?

Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494 adds a mute mic button, fixes Taskbar and Explorer bugs
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Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494 adds a mute mic button, fixes Taskbar and Explorer bugs
Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22494 brings some useful options including a mute mic button. But there's a catch.
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  1. butter said on November 6, 2021 at 5:03 am

    > Mute and unmute your mic from the Taskbar

    Oh no! Another feature Linux has had for years! Whatever will I do with such incredible proprietary software from a convicted monopoly?

    1. John G. said on November 6, 2021 at 1:14 pm

      Linux has its own problems and limitations too. It’s true that W11 hasn’t be released with the best quality, however W10 wasn’t neither in 2015. W11 will be a good OS with the enough time. :]

      1. Herman Cost said on November 6, 2021 at 2:03 pm

        Maybe. But why on earth would you want to act as an unpaid beta tester for Microsoft and use an inferior, buggy OS until that happens?

      2. John G. said on November 6, 2021 at 8:54 pm

        Because almost near all kind of software (obsolete, old, current and future one), works in Windows. And because the 70% of the computers run Windows actually. It’s obvious that W11 has been released with some important problems and the first sensation is being beta tester, however everything in software could named almost some kind of beta, because there is no error free programs and all of them are constantly evolving. That’s why. :|

      3. ali said on November 7, 2021 at 12:34 pm

        @John G

  2. John G. said on November 5, 2021 at 8:00 pm

    Thanks @Ashwin, very glad to read some good upcoming news! I hope these fixes will arrive really soon! :]

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