Microsoft is due to release a big update for Windows 11 later this year, known variously as the 22H2 update and Sun Valley 2. While an official release date is yet to be announced, we already know that the feature update is complete and was made available to developers some weeks ago.
We are expecting the official launch to come in the next few months, but you can grab it right now if you’re keen to try out new options such as Start menu folders and regain drag-and-drop in the taskbar. The good news is that getting hold of this important build of Windows 11 is incredibly simple — and there’s no need to be a developer.
The only things you need to do to get hold of Windows 11 22H2 right now is to be part of the Insider program. This does not mean that you need to install flaky, unstable builds of Windows 11; it is possible to grab the yet-to-be released update in its completed form right now.
If you’re not already taking part in the Windows Insider program, you can sign up via the Windows Update section of the Settings app. We’ve already said that there is no need to settle for unreliable builds, so this means you won’t be grabbing builds from the Beta or Dev channels — both of which can be problematic and unstable.
Instead, you can opt to enroll on the Release Preview channel and this will enable you to download and install the finalized version of Windows 11 22H2 right now, weeks ahead of the wider launch.
Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc and Aria Carley shared the news in a blog post:
We are making Windows 11, version 22H2 Build 22621 available in the Release Preview Channel for Windows Insider Program for Business participants to validate on devices in their organizations.
Commercial devices* configured for the Release Preview Channel via the Windows Insider Program Settings page or via Windows Update for Business policy, whether through Microsoft Intune or through Group Policy, will automatically be offered Windows 11, version 22H2 as an optional update provided that the device(s) meet the hardware requirements. Windows 11, version 22H2 is also now available via Windows Server Update Service and Azure Marketplace. You can learn more about deploying and validating this upcoming version of Windows 11 here. Should any issues arise, IT admins in these organizations can request free Microsoft Support. This support offer is intended to help resolve issues with commercial-specific scenarios and is limited to the Windows 11 Pro, Enterprise, and Education editions.
*Note: We consider a device a commercial device if it is not running the Windows 11 Home edition AND is being managed by an IT administrator (whether via Microsoft Endpoint Manager or other management solution) or has a volume license key or commercial ID or is joined to a domain.
We are also making this build available to any Windows Insider in the Release Preview Channel via our “seeker” experience in Windows Update. This means Insiders currently in the Release Preview Channel that meet the Windows 11 hardware requirements can go to Settings and Windows Update and choose to download and install Windows 11, version 22H2 Build 22621 if they want. Once an Insider updates their PC to Windows 11, version 22H2, they will continue to automatically receive new servicing updates through Windows Update (the typical monthly update process).
Image credit: mundissima / Shutterstock