One of the big visual differences between Windows 10 and Windows 10X is the taskbar, which features centred icons in Windows 10X.
It seems Microsoft is planning to make some changes to the taskbar in Windows 10 also, as Windows hacker Albacore has discovered that Microsoft appears to be planning to move its code out of Explorer.exe into its own DLL, Taskbar.dll.
The taskbar is being moved from Explorer.exe into Taskbar.dll. Surreal to see this get relocated after decades. Right now Explorer still contains the code, but it's possible to switch to the DLL implementation. There's still some odd bugs such as semi-broken search box UI. pic.twitter.com/2gNqcDNTzp
— Albacore (@thebookisclosed) March 25, 2021
The latest Insider build of Windows 10 201H2 includes a new component, Taskbar.dll which appears to be a functional replacement for the code in Explorer.exe. Taskbar.dll is not in use yet, but appears functional, except for a somewhat broken search bar.
Moving the code for the taskbar out of Explorer.exe should allow Microsoft to make more rapid changes to the component, and also has reliability benefits, as crashes in either component should not affect the other.
We should see the changes show up in the next major version of Windows 10, the so-called ‘Sun Valley’ update, which will bring numerous visual improvements to the operating system.