A canceled Windows Core OS “Polaris” has leaked online

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An old build of Windows Core OS has leaked online. It is an ARM32-based build with the 'Polaris' edition. Windows Core OS was planned as an universal base for Windows that could be used to combine device-specific features on top of it. This would allow Microsoft to put all puzzle pieces together for a new device instead of making a new Windows 10 edition for it.

'Polaris' was a desktop shell for Windows Core OS. It was intended to provide a familiar look of the default Windows shell, but built with modern technologies. The legacy code was expected to no longer be part of the system.

Here is how it was supposed to look. The below image is the Polaris OS screenshot running the actual shell.

Polaris was built specifically Windows Core OS running on PCs. There also were the Andromeda shell for mobile devices, and a mixed reality shell, Oasis.

Microsoft canceled both Polaris and Andromeda in 2018. The projects are now replaced by Windows 10X.

The leaked code is an ARM32 version of Polaris, build 16299. Unfortunately, this version of Polaris doesn't actually contain a working shell. Once you boot it, you will see a UI placeholder with just a Windows logo of a different color.

Some screenshots of this build.

Thanks to Nick and BetaArchive.


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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

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