Microsoft’s free suite of system utilities called PowerToys was resurrected from the Windows XP era and introduced to Windows 10 in May 2019. It can be used for advanced users to tune and simplify Windows operations for greater efficiency. By working with the Windows 10/Windows 11 shell, it allows users to customize individual workflows.

According to the latest GitHub repository submission, PowerToys will usher in two new features, setting backups and a dedicated hosts file editor.

Settings Backup in PowerToys will allow users to export all custom settings to a file, and restore settings from the file. Microsoft also wants to add additional features, such as automatic backup and restore. A new backup option will be located next to the General tab to specify the file path for PowerToys settings backups.

Another feature, the hosts file editor, makes it easier for users to manage the hosts file. hosts is a system file that can establish a “database” associated with the URL domain name and its corresponding IP address. When the user enters a URL that needs to log in in the browser, the system will automatically find the corresponding IP address from the Hosts file first. Once found, the system will immediately open the corresponding webpage, if not found, the system will submit the URL to the DNS domain name resolution server for IP address resolution.

There is no special hosts file editor in the Microsoft Windows system. The normal modification method is to open it in Notepad, which is not elegant. And PowerToys will add a dedicated hosts file editor that supports adding entries, sorting, filtering, disabling and pinging existing addresses, as well as adding comments to each entry.

It’s unclear when these two features will go live, and they’re currently in development, so we can look forward to it.

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