Most of the Windows Blue talk on the net has been about the immediately noticeable features found in the leaked build. This means things like new customization options, new settings, syncing features and things of that nature.
According to Sandro Villinger of Itworld, there are plenty of other special, hidden gems just waiting to be discovered in Windows Blue, and in a recent post he shared several of these changes.
MinKernal and BaseFS References
Probably one of the most ‘technical’ changes (but still important) is the existence of references to BaseFS and Minkernel. It’s hard to say exactly what these are, but according to Itworld, BaseFS probably stands for “Base/Basic File System” and could be a universal file system for all next-gen Windows devices and drives.
It is also believed based on an old (10 years old) research document, that BaseFS could be a more fault-tolerant network system file.
Next up, there is MinKernel. While this reference was first discovered at Itworld, ZDNET’s Mary Jo Foley says her sources indicate that MinKernel is a minimal set of functionality shared across different Windows Kernels that run on x86, ARM, Windows Phone, Xbox and other devices.
Perhaps that means we will find MinKernel and BaseFS both in Windows Blue and in the next Xbox.
I’ll admit that some of this is a bit over my head, but the big takeaway is that big changes are coming to Windows Blue, beyond the small stuff that we’ve been focusing on at the surface.
What Else is New?
The changes don’t end there. It seems that two new features called “TetheringStation” and “”TetheringManager” have been added to Windows Blue, suggesting some kind of integrated teethering included in Windows Blue. Not much is known about this at the moment though.
Then we have a change in Windows Defender. It seems that the anti-virus and spyware software is moving past the desktop and will find its way into a modern UI app for Windows Blue. With the desktop version already defending the PC, why is this necessary?
It is hard to say, but perhaps it hints to a future version of Windows Blue for tablets that only features the Modern UI and not the desktop? Maybe not, but one can dream about it.
Last but not least, there are also said to be improvements that include features to help save the battery and lower memory consumption in Windows Blue.
Windows Blue is bigger than we might realize
Some of the features we’ve heard about for Windows Blue seem to indicate something more like a Service Pack+, but the impact of Blue might be bigger than some of us have realized as indicated by WinKernel and BaseFS.
While Windows Blue itself might be a minor change, some of this underlying code in Blue could be part of a slow evolution or push into a new direction for Windows going forward.
For now all we can do is speculate about what this new direction looks like, but I personally can tell you that the more I learn about Blue, the more I find myself intrigued and somewhat excited. What about you, are you excited for Blue or not?