Microsoft releases PowerToys v0.56.1 with important updates for FancyZones and more

Microsoft PowerToys

We've already had a few updates for PowerToys this year, and Microsoft has even treated us to a selection of new utilities for 2022. Now the company has released PowerToys v0.56.1, and it's another significant update.

Sadly, there are no new toys to play with in this particular release, but there have been some important changes, fixes and updates to existing utilities. Three especially noteworthy changes include a massive increase in the number of zones that can be created in FancyZones, huge changes to Find My Mouse, and a switch to VS 2022 with the .NET 6 upgrade. There are also big changes for various other PowerToys utilities.

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On the face of things, PowerToys v0.56.1 might be seen as a minor release -- after all, Microsoft has warned that "the v0.56 release cycle focused heavily on stability and improvements" -- but there is actually a great deal to this version.

There is, for example, a new way to activate Find My Mouse, and a huge increase in the number of zones that can be created in FancyZones -- up from 40 to an incredible 128.

Here's the full changelog:

Always on Top

  • Fixed excess GPU / CPU usage when enabled
  • If border has focus, not closable via F4
  • Changing border sizes should resize correctly for existing windows
  • Border goes away with Outlook modal windows

ColorPicker

  • No longer crashes during theme change

FancyZones

  • Increased zone limit from 40 to 128.
  • Child and Popup window support for FancyZones. To enable, go to Settings→FancyZones→Windows. These were bugs we fixed that without realizing it was a useful feature to most.

File explorer

  • Fixes for Dev file preview: (Thanks @Aaron-Junker)
    • Fix fix for object reference not set.
    • Fix for encoding UTF-8.
    • Fix for file is in use.
    • Fix for saying the file is too big.

Image Resizer

Mouse utility

  • Find my mouse will now activate via shaking the mouse with a settings change!
  • Find my mouse now can excludes apps.
  • Fix for crosshair thickness looking odd due to anti-aliasing
  • Fix for a hard crash on crosshair (This was a hotfix for 0.55)

PowerRename

  • Will not spells check file names anymore. Thanks @niels9001
  • Autocomplete result box to not obscure apply button. Thanks @niels9001
  • Regex fix

PowerToys Run

  • Timezone conversion plugin for PowerToys Run! Thanks @TobiasSekan
  • Hexadecimal and binary numbers now are supported in the calculator plugin. This was added a bit ago and we'd like to extend a belated thanks to @gsuberland
  • Terminal plugin performance boost. Thanks @htcfreek!
  • Terminal will now be found via the Program plugin again.
  • Shutdown command is now using hybrid fast argument for shutting down
  • Support for VSCodium with VS Code workplace plugin. Thanks @makeProjectGreatAgain

Video conference mute

  • nVidia Broadcast software won't crash anymore

Settings

  • Upgrade notes in OOBE
  • Fix for settings being lost (This was a hotfix for 0.55)
  • UX improvements. Thanks @niels9001

Installer

  • Believe we have a fix for the long hated "app.dark.png is missing" error. Thanks to @robmen for having a great blog!
  • Installer will launch PowerToys under appropriate elevation versus Admin only due to UAC prompt for installation (This was a hotfix for 0.55)
  • PowerToys will now start if installed under different user

Development

  • ARM64 - We removed the last .NET Framework dependency. Thanks @snickler for helping get this across the finish line!
  • .NET 6 upgrade, now on the newest and hottest .NET runtime
  • Code analyzers have been upgraded! Thanks @CleanCodeDeveloper!
  • Symbols are back!
  • Code refactoring, thanks @CleanCodeDeveloper and @cyberrex5 for helping here!
  • We are now on VS 2022 with the .NET 6 upgrade.

You can grab yourself the latest version of PowerToys here, or make use of the update option within the version you already have installed.

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