How to Find the Version in UWP Apps in Windows 10

If you are curious about the versions of the apps you have installed on your Windows 10 device, there are several ways you can find it.

Knowing the version information of an application isn’t usually something pressingly urgent. But when the application goes faulty or a feature is missing, it’s the first thing you should check. For instance, we here at groovyPost often cover new Windows 10 features that may or may not have rolled out to your device yet. When the Photos app added video editing capabilities in the Fall Creators Update, not every user saw the feature update right away. An older version of the universal app would explain that issue.

In classic Win32 apps, the standard way to check version information was by clicking Help then About. However, as we’ve seen, modern Windows apps look, feel, and behave differently than classic Win32 apps.  For apps you download from the Microsoft Store or those that come bundled with Windows 10, the story is a bit different and inconsistent at times. When you want to find the version of information about an app, you might need to look in several places. Here some ways you can easily find it if you need to.

Locate the About Section of Modern Apps in Windows 10

Some apps will provide easy access to their version information. For instance, in the Calculator app, you can open the hamburger menu then click About.

The About section will provide details such as version and build number of the application.

Apps such as Mail, Windows Defender Security Center, Photos, Skype and even Edge are all over the place. This should give a little heads up on possibles places to look if you don’t find the About section in the usual places of an app you are using.

In Mail, you first click the Settings icon at the bottom of the window.

Then click About.

In an app such as Windows Defender, the About section can be found within a related links section. The Groove app also provides a similar interface for accessing its version information, too.

Photos use a different interface than the rest of the apps; you have to click the More settings menu represented by the ellipsis in the top right-hand corner then click Settings. Scroll all the way to the bottom and you will find details of the app.

Skype’s access to its version info was also different, but a little easier to find. The More menu took me straight to it.

Edge itself is also different when it comes to finding details about the version installed. The “More actions menu” is where you must first go, choose Settings, then scroll to the bottom.


groovyTip: Check App Versions with Powershell

If you don’t want to go through all that work just to find version information, the command line can be an easy way to get it. Launch PowerShell, then type Get-AppXPackage followed by the app name enclosed with an asterisk, example Get-AppXPackage *Calculator* then hit Enter. If you don’t know the apps name, you can always just type: Get-AppXPackage then hit Enter and it will list all the apps and their version information.

The list can be pretty lengthy. So, if you want to output the version info to a text file, type:

Get-AppXPackage > textfile.txt



So, what does this all tell you about UWP apps on Windows 10? Expect the unexpected when it comes to knowing the basic details. The consistent interfaces of yesteryear have been thrown out in favor of a more nonchalant approach to how apps present themselves. Remember the old days of just clicking Help > About > Done? Well, they are no more.

Sure, not many care about this information, but it can actually be very useful when diagnosing a problem such as when an app is not getting updated or you want to clarify something for a user. As mentioned above, the new Photos app in Windows 10 version 1709 includes video editing capabilities, but it turns out not every user had it right away. I was able to clearly tell them apart, not just from the interfaces, but from the installed version.

If in doubt when looking for version information, try the hamburger menu and gear icon. About information is usually found in the Settings menu and at the top or bottom section depending on the app you are using.

Are there any other UI quirks you’ve noticed in modern Windows 10 apps? What kind of consistency would you like to see driven by Microsoft?

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. It would have been a good idea to let one know where the textfile.txt has been outputted when using:
    Get-AppXPackage > textfile.txt. I had to use a little app “Search Everything” to find out that the output was made into System32. Besides that, this was a very informative article.

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