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Windows 8.1 'Kiosk Mode' discovered in newly leaked build

Windows 8.1 'Kiosk Mode' discovered in newly leaked build

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Another week, another leak. Following two leaks of Windows 8.1 builds, a third version has been made available on file sharing websites today. Build 9374 doesn't appear to include many major changes, but one new addition that Microsoft is working on is a Kiosk Mode feature. Available in the PC settings menu, Kiosk Mode appears to be a way to lock down a device to a single Windows 8-style application. Apps can be selected to launch at login, with the app lockdown in place for user accounts.

It's a feature that's likely designed for business users, or an embedded-like terminal that simply runs one application. Use cases could involve retail units that customers can use apps on, or business devices that allow employees to run a line-of-business application. Previous leaks have revealed tweaks to the Windows 8.1 UI, and alterations to several multitasking aspects. This latest build also includes UI changes to the Snap View, a method to run apps side-by-side. Microsoft appears to be removing restrictions on how apps can snap. With the latest build, you can pull a slider to snap apps into any position between the normal Snap View and the new 50 / 50 view.

A new boot to desktop option that Microsoft is currently preparing to add does not appear to be present, and there is no sign of a Start button return just yet. The previously leaked build (9369) included hints at Microsoft's search improvement plans. Build 9374 includes search changes and the first changes to include web results in the Search Charm. Windows 8.1, designed as an upgrade to Windows 8, will be made available in a public preview form initially, with release expected later this year alongside new 7- and 8-inch hardware.

Update: previously leaked Windows 8.1 builds also included Snap View position changes.