Windows 11 24H2 hints spotted

Microsoft is making some big moves for its next Windows release, which could be called the “Windows 11 2024 Update“. A new hint suggests the next big update is one step closer to release, as the tech giant has started preparing builds from the ge_release, which stands for Germanium.

While it’s widely speculated that Microsoft’s next operating system will be called Windows 12, there’s a chance this may not be the truth. Multiple references and sources have suggested the next release of Windows is called “Windows 11 2024 Update”, and it’s based on the Germanium (24H2) platform release.

For those unaware, Microsoft codenames Windows updates after elements from the periodic table, and it follows the same sequence observed in previous updates. The known codenames in the sequence have been Cobalt (21H2) and Nickel (22H2). The most recent update, “23H2”, was based on the Windows 11 22H2 update codebase.

Next generation of Windows
The next generation of Windows was teased in one of the slides at Microsoft Build

Based on our understanding of Windows development, here’s what’s happening with Windows releases:

  • Windows 11 (21H2): This initial version was codenamed “Sun Valley” and was based on the “Cobalt” codebase. It was released in October 2021.
  • Windows 11 2022 Update (22H2): This update was codenamed “Sun Valley 2” and was based on the “Nickel” codebase. It was released on September 20, 2022.
  • Windows 11 2023 Update (23H2): This update was based on the 2022 Update codebase. It was enabled via an enablement package and released on October 31, 2023.
  • Windows 11 2024 Update (24H2): This update is codenamed “Hudson Valley” and is based on the “Germanium” platform release.

The next release will be Germanium (24H2), which will ship between September and October.

Microsoft watcher Xeno has already spotted references to Build 27547, which is from the internal development branch. The “27xxx” series builds are initially intended for internal testing within Microsoft.

After internal testing, changes from these builds might be released to consumers through the Canary channel. The “26xxx” series, codenamed “Ge” (Germanium), might represent a more stable set of builds that are closer to being ready for public release.

In other words, Build 27547 isn’t Windows 12 or ge_release, but it confirms bigger changes are now tested internally.

Is it called Windows 12?

There’s a lot of talk about what the next big Windows release will be. Many think it’ll be called “Windows 12,” but there’s no official name yet. A good guess is it might be the “Windows 11 2024 Update (24H2).”

Why? Panos Panay, the former head of Windows and Surface at Microsoft, has left the company. The new bosses seem to be thinking differently and aren’t rushing to bring out a brand-new Windows version.

Instead, Microsoft might update Windows 11 again in 2024 with AI features, and Windows 12 will happen in 2025 with bigger platform changes, such as a version of the OS that could rival ChromeOS.

About The Author

Mayank Parmar

Mayank Parmar is an entrepreneur who founded Windows Latest. He is the Editor-in-Chief and has written on various topics in his seven years of career, but he is mostly known for his well-researched work on Microsoft's Windows. His articles and research works have been referred to by CNN, Business Insiders, Forbes, Fortune, CBS Interactive, Microsoft and many others over the years.