Inside the Mega Glitch: Unlocking Hidden Windows Functions with a Secret Microsoft Tool
This probably wasn’t planned this way: During a so-called bug bash for Windows 11, Microsoft employees accidentally shared a link to the StagingTool, a program that is used internally at Microsoft to activate hidden features in Windows 11.
Sometimes companies leak information purposefully, but in this case it really looks a lot like a glitch. In a bug bash for Windows 11, a link to an internal Microsoft tool was accidentally shared. The so-called StagingTool is used to unlock hidden features in Windows.
Some quests include a valid link to a staging tool that appears to be like vivetool pic.twitter.com/MUXPzQlbsy
— Xeno (@XenoPanther) August 2, 2023
Shortly after the glitch was noticed, Microsoft removed the link, but what’s on the Internet once usually stays there. Since then, the staging tool has been diligently shared among users.
This is what the StagingTool from Microsoft can do
We have taken a look at the StagingTool. It resembles another tool that follows exactly the same idea, unlock hidden features. This is the ViVeTool.
The StagingTool doesn’t offer a graphical interface either and the EXE file is not even 1 MByte in size. So you have to operate the software via command line and feed it with the right input. Built-in commands enable or disable Windows functions via feature IDs.
You can use StagingTool to search for IDs, turn features on and off, and also reset values. Additionally, there is a test mode that disables enabled features after a reboot.
If you want to experiment with it, you can get the necessary IDs from GitHub. Important: You are working deep inside Windows with this and a lot can go wrong. Windows Insiders, for example, unlock Windows Copilot with the ID 44776738.
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