Windows 11 Field Guide Update: 23H2, The Site, and The Book – Revamped for Users

The Windows 11 Field Guide chapters will be updated for version 23H2 during our stay in Mexico City. I have several ideas on how to accomplish this effectively.

Updating these chapters can be a challenge. Ideally, I would release a new edition of the book with all chapters updated for the new OS version. However, this is not feasible due to the book’s extensive length and the multitude of chapters. Additionally, there are new chapters, numerous content updates, and countless screenshots that need to be redone. Microsoft’s unconventional updating strategy further complicates matters, as Windows 11 varies across different PCs at any given time. It is a messy situation.

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However, for this specific book, I have fulfilled a long-standing desire and made a web version available on Thurrott.com. This is an added benefit for Premium members and creates an additional level of support for me. Not only do I need to post each chapter on the site, which is a tedious process, but I also have to keep them updated as I edit the book. I have done well on this front, with the exception of the Microsoft Edge chapters, which are currently lagging behind the book’s versions.

For the Windows 11 version 23H2 updates, I will prioritize the most significantly changing parts of the system and the book. This will involve major updates to specific chapters and the addition of new chapters covering topics such as Copilot, Outlook, and Windows Backup. Some existing chapters, like those for Mail and News, will be retired. Additionally, there will be a substantial number of new screenshots required.

During the book’s initial release last year, I ensured that it provided substantial content, with the understanding that it would gradually expand and improve over time. This led to a significant gap between my announcement of working on the book and its initial publication. The first release included 27 chapters. The process will be slightly different for 23H2.

I recently realized that the best way to update the book for 23H2 is to publish the new and fully edited chapters on the website first. I have already posted the first chapters, What’s New and Familiar in Windows 11 Version 23H2 and What’s Missing in Windows 11 Version 23H2, and I have archived the original versions by placing them in a new “Archived – 22H2” section at the bottom of the table of contents on the book’s landing page. I will follow the same approach for each fully updated chapter going forward.

While these chapters may not be particularly noteworthy, they mark the beginning of the process. Although I have not yet determined the specific updates that will be included in the upcoming release of the ebook version of the book on Leanpub, it will likely consist of the three new chapters mentioned earlier, updated versions of the chapters in the “Install Windows 11” and “Upgrade to Windows 11” sections, and a few important chapters such as File Explorer and Backup. If I can accomplish all this while in Mexico City, I will be in a good position to continue updating the remaining chapters as needed.

Some updates will have to wait, such as those related to Microsoft Edge. The visual change involving a Copilot icon replacing the Bing icon has no functional impact but will affect almost every screenshot in those chapters.

There are still uncertainties regarding certain updates. For instance, the book currently does not cover topics like Paint and Notepad, but it will now need to do so. This may result in the addition of one or two new chapters.

To distinguish this “edition” of the book from the “original,” the new and updated chapters will feature 16:10 screenshots instead of 16:9, providing a more accurate depiction of the appearance on modern PCs. Additionally, each chapter (excluding the two already posted) will begin with an upfront section highlighting the new and/or most interesting content. This will help readers quickly access the most important information in this extensive book.

We will see how this approach unfolds. I plan to begin posting more new and updated chapters on this site and, eventually, on the ebook as well.

Actually, now that I think about it, perhaps a new cover design for 23H2 is also in order. Hmm.

Stay tuned for more updates.

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