Windows 10 Insider Preview Build Brings New Disk Management UI

Posted on August 21, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 26 Comments

A new Windows 10 Insider Preview build adds a new disk management interface to Settings for those in the Dev channel, so this is probably aimed for Windows 10 version 21H1 or later.

Windows 10 Insider Preview build 20197 comes with exactly one new feature: A new Manage Disk and Volumes page in Settings > System > Storage > Manage Disks and Volumes that duplicates some of the functionality of the old Disk Management MMC (Microsoft Management Console) that will still be available for us old-timers.

The new interface provides a way to view information about each disk attached to the PC, create and format volumes, and assign drive letters. Microsoft claims it was “built from the ground up to with accessibility in mind,” whatever that means, and it offers better integration with Storage Spaces.

That’s it for new features.

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Comments (27)

27 responses to “Windows 10 Insider Preview Build Brings New Disk Management UI”

  1. olditpro2000

    Small step, but a welcome one - as long as it has feature parity with the existing MMC.

  2. zhackwyatt

    > Microsoft claims it was “built from the ground up to with accessibility in mind,” whatever that means.


    My guess is that it works better with screen readers for the visually impaired. That sort of thing.

  3. Greg Green

    It sure wastes a lot of space. On a 27” monitor this uses only 13”.

  4. wright_is

    Now all they need to do is sort out the bug, where administrators don't have access to the new settings, but do have access to the old control panel!

  5. Nischi

    worst ui design ever seen, but it's sadly just following the foot steps of the rest of the modern settings app.

  6. dwindleflip

    I give up. This is just shit work. It's as if they don't care anymore or have never used a computer.


    At this point, people need to be fired.


    Windows has no future with leadership like this.


    Could you imagine the reaction Steve Jobs would have had if this was checked into MacOS by a dev?

  7. javial

    Its really ugly and unintuitive, like all the new Windows 10 UI. Its a smarphone UI. Mobile first, cloud first and desktop never again.

  8. techreader

    I miss the bar chart that lets you visualize the disk usage. Hope they will add that. It certainly does look alpha.


    But, yeah, glad to see them picking away at porting all these separate applets into Settings.

  9. Thomas Parkison

    Now all it needs is a new BitLocker GUI.

  10. blue77star

    Honestly, if this is going to bring some consistency in interface I am all for it. On the other hand, ever since Windows 10 was released I never used settings except for Windows Update screen because it is that useless, cluttered and ugly looking. But again for the sake of consistency, let's kill control panel.

  11. hrlngrv

    I like the BOOTME label for D:. FWIW, all my test files begin with deleteme.

    If that's intended to replace the Disk Management plugin in the Management Console, it stinks. For some things it's better to have denser information displays, and for me that includes disk/partition management. Especially as the screen image above lacks free space and % free information. Partition management may be something which shouldn't be too accessible lest people try to use it too quickly without knowing what it actually is and what they should avoid.

  12. MutualCore

    That's horrible, just a bunch of text. No UI, what the frak is going on? So does 'accessibility' now mean no icons?

    • exreey

      In reply to MutualCore:

      The only thing they've left to do is invert the colors and we're right back in MSDOS 6.22 :)

    • jimchamplin

      In reply to MutualCore:

      Yes, it’s text. Shows each physical drive and the volumes on each. In keeping with the style of these UIs, when you select a volume, you’ll see available operations as buttons and or menus.


      Seems fine to me.

      • wilhil

        In reply to jimchamplin:

        Have you ever used Disk Manager in MMC? Compare a quick glance of that to this - it's harder to see what is going on.


        The only thing this has got going for it is that it is a unified design with the other settings pages... however, most of the other settings pages are equally as bad!


        I can't believe how strong I feel about this that I actually registered an account to say how bad this looks!

        • jimchamplin

          In reply to wilhil:

          Disk Manager is easier to understand what's going on for people like you and I. Not for everyone. I usually prefer diskpart anyway, but I know that for most folks, even Disk Manager is scary looking. It's visually dense and provides a massive amount of information.


          When all they want to do is split a USB disk in two, this will work for them. For you, Disk Manager will let you tweak your NTFS cluster size. Two different UIs for two different kinds of user.


          Still seems fine to me. Also probably unfinished, which is also fine.


          Fine. It's fine.

  13. sevenacids

    I don't know about you, but honestly, this UI is just terrible. And I don't understand why. At one point, they show these nice PR demos of Fluent Design, pretty UI, and all the yada yada - and then this happens. What's wrong with them? The old disk management MMC looks a bit dated, but way better than this. This looks like an alpha UI made by a developer before it was handed over to the designer. Just like most of the remaining settings app, by the way.


    I'm really disappointed, they don't seem to care for what they do. If the code behind this looks equally bad... I wouldn't be surprised.

  14. bart

    Do I spot a trend in the last few build with MS re-starting efforts to update old UI?

    Panos demanding Windows gets a clean up?

  15. praveen_m

    Do they think this is some kind of joke? This is the sort of thing you show your boss to prove that you're working on something.


    It's a shame because WinUI isn't bad at all. But guess what? They're still using the system XAML for the shell. People have just found feature flags that enable it so that means that the shell will use WinUI at least 3 years after its release. Hooray for find and replace!


    I'm really glad that you didn't praise Microsoft, Paul. Many articles thought that this was Microsoft actually moving to Settings. Those people thought that Microsoft wasn't finished but time and time again, we know that they'll push this as is. I still can't get over what they did to Task View. I use virtual desktops every day. Explorer should not be crashing. Anyway, you could've done better with the title and mentioned that they took a three year hiatus from this work :P

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