Windows Terminal 1910 preview is quite literally a more rounded affair

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As well as a fresh PowerShell peek, Microsoft sent an update of its Windows Terminal out into the world last night.…

As well as a fresh PowerShell peek, Microsoft sent an update of its Windows Terminal out into the world last night.

The preview – officially called 1910, though a click of the About box reveals it is actually 0.6.2951.0 – trickled down from the Microsoft Store overnight and has clearly been buffed as the final release nears.

We took a look while we were trying out PowerShell 7 and came away impressed with the progress the team is making, although keep in mind this is still very much a preview at present.

Immediately evident are improvements around the tabbed interface. GUI obsessives will note the rounded edges, but more useful is the handling of too-many-tabs with the aid of arrows to scroll the tab set.

There is more work to do here. For example, we found that when you open up a new tab, the tabs do not scroll to match the visible session. There appears to be no way to reorder those tabs and one can’t drag one off onto the desktop to kick off a new window.

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Oh, and watch out for resizing – those tabs will shrink, but not automatically grow again.

But this is a preview, after all, and things are headed in the right direction.

There is also no sign of a GUI for editing settings, but if you’re a command line fan then the idea of checking boxes and selecting from dropdowns is likely anathema anyway. Windows Terminal is a lot more forgiving these days when it comes to ham-fisted .json editing – handy for us when we made an awful hash of adding PowerShell 7 Preview 5 as an option.

Microsoft has made life a little easier for those who manage to thoroughly ruin their settings file, even with the helpful auto-fill schemas of version 0.5, with a defaults.json file, accessible by holding down Alt while clicking on the Settings. Sadly, there is no GUI clue for this trick at present, which is a shame since those defaults are useful when handcrafting one’s own profiles.json file.

Windows Terminal will also have a crack at spotting any Windows Subsystem for Linux distributions installed and add them to the user’s profiles.json file, although in our experience it demanded a restart before it did so.

A number of bug fixes round out the release, including one dealing with text corruption when running two tabs at the same time, another tackling newline issues around copy-paste, and the nebulous “General stability improvements” (fewer crashes).

This being the new Microsoft, a dip into GitHub will furnish the curious with all the answers.

After the frenetic pace of development since Windows Terminal first arrived earlier this year, it feels very much like a fit-and-finish update, smoothing the rough edges ahead of a final release, possibly by the end of 2019. ®

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