Windows 10 Creators Update version 1703, introduces a number of new policies and improvements to reduce the overhead of supporting both Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer 11. Additionally, it also improves end-user experience considerably, with new features and improved fundamentals for a more productive and enjoyable experience on the web.
The Creators Update upgrades Microsoft Edge to EdgeHTML 15, including performance, security, and compatibility improvements. Management improvements such as new policies as well as missing policies for key management scenarios, enabled by Mobile Device Management (MDM), Microsoft Intune, and Group Policy, are added.
Microsoft Edge supports all the latest web standards, along with Edge Developer Center, that provides developers with guidance and tools to help update their sites to use modern standards.
Those interested can now easily migrate their sites to modern web standards by using “Enterprise Mode with Internet Explorer” for backward compatibility.
And, to manage Enterprise Mode Site List, you can use ‘Enterprise Mode Site List Manager’ for a relatively small site list, and for a larger site list, Microsoft recommends using ‘Enterprise Mode Site List Portal.’
Additionally, the following improvements make Edge more efficient, responsive, and secure:
- Improved battery efficiency on the go on laptops or Surface devices.
- Edge now prioritizes user’s input, thus making faster and more responsive, even when the page may be busy or hung
- Arbitrary Code Guard and Code Integrity Guard, protect from exploits aim to load malicious code into memory, and dramatically improved the Microsoft Edge sandbox, cutting the attack surface available by up to 90% in some areas.
Microsoft also added three new policies to help configure search providers — “configure additional search engines, Set default search engine, and Allow search engine customization that helps decide whether to lock down a search engine configuration so your employees can’t change it..”
Some additional improvements made into the Creators Update release include:
Based on the site, Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer provides seamless switching from one to the other. Following policies are available now for better app compatibility:
A new policy setting synchronizes favorites folder between the two browsers in real-time. Combined with “Enterprise Mode Site List,” users would never need to remember which browser to use on a site – as it should all be done automatically.
Another new policy setting adds “Allow Adobe Flash” to completely ‘turn off,’ or ‘disable,’ flash content.
Adobe Flash Click-to-Run policy lets you override and allow Adobe Flash content to run when someone explicitly clicks on it.
version 1703 also bring in an ability to customize user experiences and functionality as per enterprise need through a number of new policy settings that let you restrict the “First Run” webpage from opening on Microsoft Edge when disabled users will instead navigate straight to default start page.
Another, additional policy setting that joins existing “Configure Start pages,” now let you set configure Start pages without locking them down. You can then decide whether to modify, add, or delete these Start pages.
The policy setting “Allow Address bar drop-down” lets you choose to prevent from displaying the suggested search results in the Microsoft Edge suggestions list.
“Allow clearing browsing data on exit,” helps you automatically clear all browsing data when Microsoft Edge closes—if an admin doesn’t want browsing data to persist on the machine when browsing session ends.
A number of new features and improvements to browser fundamentals improve the overall experience:
Tab management lets users set tabs aside for later, sweeping them aside and organizing them in a special section for easy access at a later time.
You can see all the tab management features in the following animations:
Set your tabs aside for later:
Show tab previews to scan your tabs more easily
Find ebooks in the Microsoft Edge Hub
Comparing scrolling on a busy page, before and after the input responsiveness improvements in EdgeHTML 15:
And, by a simple click on the “show tab previews” icon, expand the tab bar for easier preview of the content of all open tabs.
The new “W3C Payment Request API,” enables simpler checkouts and payments on Windows 10 PCs and phones using Microsoft Edge, by connecting to user’s Microsoft Account (with the user’s permission).
See the screen capture of a Microsoft Wallet dialog box with shipping and payment information:
WebVR Developer Preview, as Edge now supports WebVR 1.1 draft specification, lets developers create immersive VR experiences on the web using this API with Windows Mixed Reality dev kits.
Brotli is a compression format that achieves up to 20% better compression ratios with similar compression and decompression speeds (PDF).
Finally, other features including WebRTC, async-await, TCP Fast Open, Intersection Observer, experimental support for WebAssembly, and more.
For more details on the new policies for Microsoft Edge, check out the Available Policies topic on TechNet.