What is new and different in the just released Windows 11?
OK so I finally got a copy of Windows 11. The publicly released version, not the early releases that the insiders get. Those previews are not always the same as the final version. So, what is new in this version.
To start with it looks a little different. Rounded corners, a centered start menu, a centered task bar the stays at the bottom of the screen and pastel colors. Installing the new version is basically the same once you get used to the new look. While most of the things you had in Windows 10 are still there although you may spend a few hours exploring the new “more modern” layout.
Some of the more operational changes are:
Some things will not be in Windows 11.
Here is a list from Microsoft of feature depreciations and removals:
That may seem like a rather lengthy list but I’ll bet most people only notice a few of those items. I, for one, am glad to see some of them go. The people who want then can go to the Microsoft store and get them and they won’t be cluttering up the machine for the rest of us.
How do you get Windows 11?
For most people it will come as an update just like any other update. You can also download it directly from Microsoft at, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows11
Hard drive size and available RAM probably won’t be a problem. The two main sticking points are TPM and a suitable CPU.
In technical terms the Trusted Platform Module is a secure crypto processor that secures a computer via an integrated cryptographic key. In simple terms it is a security alarm that prevents hackers or malware from gaining access to data. Windows 11 requires TPM 2.0. This is a piece of hardware. If your machines motherboard has one you OK. If not, then you need a new motherboard. (Read that as, “you need a new machine”.) There has been some talk that Microsoft may soften their stance on that requirement but the version that I downloaded did require TPM 2.0.
Is the processor in your machine one of the “chosen” ones that can run Windows11? That is something of a moving target. Originally Microsoft only had a few specific CPUs on that list. They have been expanding that list ever since. Most mew PCs will probably have a suitable CPU.
You can check to see if your machine is compatible with Windows11 a couple of ways.
If your machine is not compatible you don’t need to panic, at least not yet. Microsoft is going to continue extended support for Windows 10 until October 14 2025. They have a history of revising these end dates and extending them even longer. Anyway, your Windows 10 machine will be good for at least a few more years.
And remember — always back it up!