New Windows 11 Build Adds BitLocker Exclusion Policy for USB Drives

Admins can now exclude USB removable drives from encryption in Build 22579

Microsoft has released a new Windows 11 build with a lot of improvements, changes and fixes for known issues. The new build is available for all Windows Insiders that will install the Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22579 pushed to the Dev Channel.

The highlights of this build is a new policy for Windows administrators who want to exclude USB removable drives from BitLocker encryption.

“This will solve the problem of automatic or accidental encryption of storage built into specialized devices like video cameras, voice recorders, conferencing systems, medical devices, and many more,” the Windows Insider team said.

“When this policy is enabled, you will not be able to encrypt storage that is on the exclusion list, and you will not be prompted for encryption if you connect such storage to a device while ‘Deny write access to removable drives not protected by BitLocker’ policy is enabled on it.”

As for now, this new policy can only be configured by IT administrators only. It can only be configured via MDM (Mobile Device Management) and custom profiles using OMA-URI (Open Mobile Alliance Uniform Resource Identifier) setting.

Configuration settings tab for the profile (BitLocker USB exclusion)

The IT administrators have to gather the Hardware IDs of device to exclude them from encryption. It is also required to configure the BitLocker Exclusion list Policy in Intune by using the steps provided in official announcement.

Some More Changes in Build 22579

Some general changes are added, like win32 apps that use CPrintDialog will now show modern print dialog, new fluent-style icons for Magnifier, and updated the WIN + X menu to point to Windows PowerShell.

A new ability to name folders of applications in the Start Menu. Clicking a Folder will provide an option to edit the name. Apps and sites can be pinned in the “Apps and sites we think you’ll love” page in the Get Started app. The multi-finger touch gestures included with delightful animations that follow your finger to swipe left and right for switching between recently used windows.

Recent Apps Feature: continuity with your office documents

This build also rolled out an update for Media Player (Version 11.2202.42.0), which brings support for CD playback. The Recent Apps feature was announced which allows users to easily access the three most recently used apps from their Android device on PC.

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