Windows 11, an Operating System, or an update?

At the beginning of October this year, Windows released its newest version, Windows 11. There has been a lot of talk online about this new version. Many believe it should not have been released as an Operating System (OS), but more of an update for Windows 10. While the new OS has some cool new features, some cool old features are not included with this one. Many older systems are not compatible with the new version. While there is a workaround that can allow older machines to download the Windows 11 upgrade, they do not allow for updates and support on the older systems.

Why a New Version

Windows operating systems have always been a work in progress. Users can expect about 10 years of support and service from each version. With the first 5 years being free support, updates, and patches. The second 5 years of extended support or paid technical support. Windows 10 was released in 2015, it is reaching the end of its life cycle and will be phased out by 2025.

What this Means

Windows 11 is a free upgrade right now it is available for most newer computer systems. System that are a few years older may find they can still download the new OS, but without the updates and security, it is designed to have available. What this means for users of Windows 10 is they still have their operating system; however, it will no longer get updates or patches after its life cycle ends in 2025. Hackers target Windows systems, for this reason, looking for older versions to break into more easily. Security updates keep the system current on malware, ransomware, and virus’ that can infect a system.

What’s Missing

So, what about the missing features, the old favorites that have been removed? The ability to move the taskbar to the left or right of the screen is no longer available. The user can also not elect to “not combine open apps” anymore. Dragging and dropping files on app icons to open them is no longer an option as well. Other features that users are missing include Timeline, tablet mode, Live tiles in the start menu, news and interest tab, and Cortana integration.

Windows Internet Explorer will also not be included in Windows 11, making it the first windows edition in decades to not have the IE browser pre-installed. The snipping legacy tool will be replaced with the newest version “Snip & Sketch”. The last few things that will be missing from your Windows 11 download include 3D viewer, OneNote for Windows 10, Paint 3D, and Skype. While not essential, these items will be missed by more than a few users.

What’s New

Let’s look at some of the features that are included in this version. A more Mac-like interface is probably the thing users will notice first. A clean design with pastel colors and rounded corners and the start menu is moved to the center, more like the Mac and Chromebook systems. However, users can still move the start menu to the left side if they choose.

The new version will also have integrated Android apps available through the Amazon Appstore, integrated Microsoft Teams, better virtual desktop support, an easier transition from monitor to tablet, widgets and Xbox tech for better gaming. The enhanced touchscreen, voice, and pen support are designed to make the touchscreen experience an attractive option to users.

What This Means for Users

Many computer owners will always want to have the latest and greatest new products they can find, but this is one that maybe needs more time to germinate in the computer lab and develop into a fully functional operating system. So, while many will download this optional free upgrade. Other users, like myself, will not move as quickly. It’s not about liking or disliking the program, but about letting them work out the kinks and making the changes that all new programs end up making to create a better product. That is why it is good news that we have until October 14, 2025, before the support for Windows 10 comes to a complete stop. This gives the creators and users a chance to work through all the kinks in the program before they must switch to the newer version.

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Davis Advanced Technologies