How to switch from Windows 11 Dev to Beta channel

It’s a rare thing! Microsoft released the same build for Windows 11 insiders in developer and beta channels. The building number is 22581. In doing so, the company opened a “limited window” to to replace between channels. Next week Micorsoft may release a higher version for Dev and that window may close, so it’s time for you to switch to beta Dev as it wasn’t possible with previous versions if you’re so inclined.

What’s new in Windows 11 build 22581

With build 22581, Windows 11 beta users can now experience new features that until now were only available on the dev channel.

If you’re a beta user, you can try a tablet-optimized taskbar, new task manager, home folders, and live captions.

Note that the tablet-optimized taskbar works on touchscreen devices, but not on desktops or laptops. The build also comes with a number of fixes and known issues.

Windows 11 built-in program

If you’re new, Microsoft releases Insider Preview builds for Windows 11 through three channels: Developer, Beta, and Release Preview.

The Developer channel brings news. Builds are highly unstable and likely to break things and may require some workarounds. Development builds are not tied to a specific version. The builds contain the latest work progress code from Microsoft.

Beta and preview builds are pretty stable builds that you can participate in.

Sometimes, as with the latest Insider version released on March 23, 20222, it may be possible to switch your Windows 11 device from the dev channel to another channel. For that, you first need to check your current build number and compare it to the build number on the channel you want to switch.

To check the build number, you can look at the watermark on the desktop or run the winver command. Then check the fight hub page to know the latest preview version of Windows.

So far, if you are using Insider Preview build in Dev channel, you need to do a clean install of Windows 11, but Microsoft is now giving you the chance to switch from Windows 11 Dev to beta channel without losing data. Here’s how you can make use of it.

How to switch from Dev channel to Beta in Windows 11

  1. click in To start
  2. Select Definitions
  3. click in windows update
  4. Select Windows Insider Program
  5. Expand internal settings and select beta channelI. That’s it.

Note: You must send diagnostic data to Microsoft to receive new Windows 11 Insider builds. Make sure the optional diagnostic data push setting is enabled in Privacy & Security > Diagnostics & Feedback for it.

Developer and beta versions of Windows 11 must use the same build number.

It is unfortunate that the File Explorer and Open with Dialog tabs can no longer be enabled in this build.

What’s your take on this insider version of Windows 11 released for dev and beta? Are you jumping to the beta channel? Let us know in the comments below.

Closing words: Microsoft has opened a rare window for users to switch from Windows 11 dev to the beta channel without doing a clean install.

More about Windows 11:

How to Disable ‘Search Highlights’ in Windows 11 and Windows 10

How to make Windows 11 Win+X menu work without crashing Explorer

How to get rid of ‘System requirements not met’ watermark on non-Windows 11 compatible PCs

Windows 11 tests windowed Alt+Tab experience, how to enable

Windows 11/10 lets you pin any window always on top with PowerToys

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