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Windows 10 “Developer Mode”

The new Windows 10 update coming in a few weeks. It’s called Windows 10 “Anniversary Edition” (I would have just called it 10.1, because, I dunno, monotonically increasing numbers and all, but whatever) and it has a LOT of really nice refinements.

Windows 10 is continuously updated and has been a few times since release, but this most recent one adds a lot of cool stuff like support for Bash on Ubuntu for Developers. For some folks who say they “wait for version 3” – this coming update is that version 3.

One thing I’ve noticed – and I’m personally rooting for – is a specific section in Windows Settings that seems to be getting some more love. I’m hoping we (developers and power users) will see some real investment here. If you agree after reading this post, sound off in the comments and maybe someone at Microsoft will notice and agree.

If you go to the Settings app on these newer Windows 10 builds, you’ll notice “For Developers” as a new menu item. Now, to be clear, I’m reading into this and likely adding meaning where there may not be, but I love this. It’s a formal place in the operating system where I can TELL IT THAT I AM A DEVELOPER. 

I can say “I want this machine to be in developer mode.”

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Under Developer Mode in the Insiders’ Builds there is a nice collection of developer and power-user related settings brought together under one roof. What’s great about this is that you already know these settings. As a developer you likely install Windows and then immediately go around to Windows Explorer, the Registry, and a bunch of other places to tweak Windows to how you work as a developer.

For example, Windows Explorer. Non-technical parent doesn’t need to see Hidden Files or have the Full Path in the Title Bar. But I DO, and those settings are all in one place.

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Seriously, the “Full path in the title bar” thing is super useful. I used to say “that should be the default.” Now I realize that it shouldn’t be. It should be the default for Developers.

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There’s other options as well for Remote Desktop, PowerShell, and remote diagnostics.

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Today this new Developer Mode settings page looks like a nice collection of conveniences, but I really think it’s got amazing potential, again as a formal declaration that I am a developer.

In the future I’d love to see (totally brainstorming here as I am not in the Windows department) a quick way to turn on Bash on Ubuntu on Windows 10, or quickly download VSCode or Visual Studio Community, get .NET Core, install Python, install mobile device emulators, install SysInternals or prep my system for remote debugging.

What do YOU think?


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