Windows 11 has a secret WASDK File Explorer app complete with an astounding new image gallery feature

WASDK File Explorer

The Insider builds of Windows 11 almost always have interesting new features and options to explore, but sometimes the tastiest morsels are hidden from sight as Microsoft is still working on them. The latest release — Build 25300 — is a good example, as it includes an experimental version of File Explorer.

This test version of Explorer is based on WASDK (Windows App SDK), and it includes a new image gallery feature that is sure to win itself a lot of fans.

The new functionality was discovered in the latest Dev build of Windows 11 by software detective Albacore.

While the as-yet-unannounced version of File Explorer is currently said to have sub-par performance, the new features are highly appealing and very good-looking, as a tweet reveals:

Hidden within build 25300 is something Longhorn’s shell designers wished to one day see in production — a XAML based photo gallery right inside File Explorer. Not as flashy as Phodeo, but I’d say it still counts. Has a timeline scrollbar & configurable photo source list.

— Albacore (@thebookisclosed) February 19, 2023

In further tweets, Albacore explains a bit more about the features and how they can be enabled:

Here’s how you can enable the new WASDK & XAML bits on your own 🧪
The WASDK File Explorer is fairly unstable and a bit sluggish, dragging tabs and interacting with the gallery timeline may result in a crash — please think twice before enabling it. It’s hidden away for a reason.

— Albacore (@thebookisclosed) February 19, 2023

It probably goes without saying, but enabling these hidden features is not something that is supported or recommended by Microsoft. If you choose to tinker, you do so entirely at your own risk.

Image credit: Albacore

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