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Introducing Windows 11 (windows.com)
283 points by WalterSobchak 7 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 377 comments



Related ongoing thread:

Microsoft announces Windows 11 - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=27618805


Apparently the Home edition will require a Microsoft account and an internet connection. [1] Can't say I'm looking forward to this. All my Windows installations are with local accounts and I would like to keep it that way. Microsoft has already made it incredibly obnoxious to achieve this with the latest Windows 10 setups, where you have to make sure your computer is not connected to the internet to even unlock the fallback local account creation option. [2] A sad day indeed if this is no longer possible.

--

[1] https://www.theverge.com/2021/6/24/22548480/windows-11-home-...

[2] https://www.howtogeek.com/442609/confirmed-windows-10-setup-...


There is a workaround for now: just press Alt-F4

See https://www.neowin.net/news/windows-11-home-requires-interne...


If that's true, then I'll be forced to move many people's PCs to another OS after decades of Windows. I hope they reverse that decision, it's so hostile.


I think a recent version of Windows I had the misfortune of setting up also required a Ms account: no option for a local install. It's also possible that I'm just stupid and didn't see it, but (shrug)


The secret is you have to install Windows 10 with the network disconnected. If it doesn't detect a network connection, it lets you create a local account


You can bypass it by either turning off the network connection prior to a new/clean installation on 20H2/21H1. If you are stuck on the account screen during the installation process, then entering wrong credentials 3 times will present you with a local account option. However, if you have completed installation, then there is an option to turn it into a local account in Settings --> User Accounts --> Change your account type.


It should, even on the latest Window 10 builds, but only if your computer is not connected to the Internet...


They have really obsure stuff going on but I don't actually think they'll deny it even if you're not connected, that'll raise a LOT of legal actions against them.


It sounds like it will, actually, deny access if you aren't connected. This is for Windows 11 Home, not Pro.

Also, as for legal actions, strongly doubt it. Apple has required an Apple ID on their iPhones and iPads for years during setup.


>Apple has required an Apple ID on their iPhones and iPads for years during setup.

No they haven't. The setup process encourages using an Apple ID, but it has never been required.


I don't like that they make it mandatory, but I understand why they want to push users to using MS accounts. When I set up a PC (Android phone) for non-technical users I always make sure they have a MS (Google) account.

Things like backup and password reset are just so convenient that they outweigh the very theoretical privacy risk for most people.


It's a prelude to subscription Windows. Instead of having a family PC that everyone can use, every user with a Microsoft account will need a license. The OS for a family PC is eventually going up 5-10x in price IMO.


Or the use the google model and make people pay the subscription cost psychologically rather than monetarily.


That's a capitalist guarantee.

Everyone already has a windows install, so the only growth is to charge more. It doesn't really matter how; windows will cost more


theoretical … lol


I'll keep using Windows 10 Home then.

Thankfully I only use that machine for gaming.


I replaced Windows with Linux for gaming a couple years ago, due in part to Valve's Proton. It's not perfect, but I estimate 80% of the games I play "just work" and require no tweaking. The state of things for your set of games can be evaluated with https://www.protondb.com.


I've found that a majority of games work on Linux, but they all have drastic performance hits. What can run at 200fps on Windows will be less than 140fps on Linux at the same settings.


> I've found that a majority of games work on Linux, but they all have drastic performance hits

It's probably highly dependent on your graphics drivers in fairness. But with regards to the comments on the 200 -> 140 hz drop, I have a genuine question: how much of an impact does that have unless you have a 240 hz monitor?


Not much, but there are some games where the Windows version is like 80fps and the Linux version becomes unplayable


Me too. Proton is amazing, it’s really lowered the barrier to entry for gaming on Linux. For the most part, people can totally avoid having to mess with wine themselves. Until online multiplayer games make their anti-cheat software work on Linux or vac-banning Linux users stops I think Windows will still have that part of the market.


Does macOS require an Apple account?


Just got a new mac. It doesn't require it, but

- They ask you to when you buy it

- They ask you to in an email after you buy it

- It prompts you during install

- It prompts you right after you installed

- It prompts you when you try and update the non-operating-system software that came with the computer, and doesn't let you upgrade it if you don't create one.

And probably a whole lot more prompts that I missed.

It also uses dark patterns to imply that you must enter payment information for you account. Took me 15 minutes of googling to figure out how to create one without entering payment information.

So... "no".


macOS does that, but I find Windows 10 to be way, way worse. There's an option in one of the setup screens, but good luck finding it. They really make it hard to use a local account (or at least used to - I haven't reinstalled Windows in 2 years).


I'm torn on which is worse, I've helped people set up windows computers on the most recent iteration and was equally unimpressed.

Windows hides the option more, mac holds updating offline apps hostage, safari browser extensions hostage, and tries to trick you into entering payment information.

Both are terrible.


I think you need to not setup internet connection to be able to not use MS account.


No, you don't have to sign in with an Apple ID, but the O/S certainly strongly encourages you to do so upon installation (or first boot of a new Mac)


It sounds like Windows and macOS are similar in this regard, except Apple has more customers who would see this as a "convenience" because their smartphone/tablet world is tied to Apple.


Well that, but also things like "Find my", which are a genuinely valuable and cannot function without some sort of account you can access online.


You could pair devices to each other instead of to an account. There is no reason an account needs to sit at the core of the find my experience.


actually there is plenty of reason. like you lose your backpack with your macbook and iphone in it .


It's damn near as annoying as Microsoft's harassment.


> Apparently the Home edition will require a Microsoft account and an internet connection.

So they will finally get what they couldn't finalize in W10. These folks have no shame.


> Windows is more than just an operating system; it’s a fabric woven into our lives and in our work.

Folks, if you were thinking Windows 11 will bring less telemetry, you were wrong :-)


> Windows is more than justn operating system

So we decided to make meaningless and confusing UI changes! Nevermind that billions of people rely on their knowledge of this OS's interface, fuck 'em! We're just so damn innovative all the time!


It's the "we have to do something!!!" mentality driven by the piles and piles of cash Microsoft has just lying around.


This! Just when everyone was finally getting used to Windows 10.... Finally...


With the growing awareness that tech giants possess intimate knowledge of our preferences, activities, and lives - and use that influence to literally addict us to technology, sell us things, influence us politically - who the f*ck wants another fantastically wealthy corporation "woven into our lives"?

I mean, honestly, does anyone else yearn for the pre-2000 Internet? It sure feels increasingly like we're living in a tech dystopia.


Most of these companies don't even pay taxes, they are literally leeches trying to suck blood out of everyone in their path.


source?


None.

But Windows is less and less a money maker for Microsoft, so it's the obvious route.


Do you think they finally finished the control panel transition? Window 10's control panel thing feels like it was stopped halfway through development, so they left the old stuff in there but made it hard to access. Unfortunately most of the time when you need to change something it's not on the new control panel so you have to dig for the old one instead.

When Windows 10 was first released I figured they would finish up the new control panel and deprecate the old one, but instead several years have passed with no progress whatsoever on the problem and it is still a pain point with Windows 10. Certainly it can't be that hard to copy over the missing features? Did the control panel team quit en-masse in 2015?


When Windows 10 was first released I figured they would finish up the new control panel and deprecate the old one

Some of them go back to Win2k/NT and if you start looking through them carefully, you'll probably notice the sediment layers of just about every major Windows release. I doubt that's going to change in Win 11. That said 'no progress whatsoever' is not quite accurate, most of the significant Win 10 updates have expanded what the new control panels can do.


The fun thing is too that a lot of old Win2k/NT tools / layers are the source of many security vulnerabilities. An example is font rendering in the kernel, was intended to be a performance increase back in maybe 3.1? Ended up becoming a major pain point from a security perspective.


Control panel allowed for third-party add-ins. settings doesn't. Until CPLs are migrated, Control Panel stays


wasnt a hierarchical, folder-like control panel more usable anyway? They just needed to figure out a more sane hierarchy.


But there are still non-third-party things in Control Panel. Microsoft hasn't moved all their own settings over to Settings.


Third-party add-ins add additional tabs to Microsoft’s Control Panel items. Microsoft can’t just remove them.


If Microsoft really wanted to, they could find a way to squeeze the old panels into the new UI. They can run x86 binaries on ARM, and all sorts of other tricks, its not like they lack the engineering talent.

They also do loads of shims/special treatments for specific apps based on a compatibility database. Worst case scenario, they could rewrite the top ~100 most common ones and make “Legacy Control Panel” an optional feature that is off by default.

It has been 5+ years since Windows 10 came out, longer since 8, Microsoft really doesn’t need people making excuses for them.


They could remove (or just hide) them by default, if no third-party add-ins are installed. But they can't do that because not all of the settings are exposed by the new Settings screen.


I mean.. The taskbar seems like a Dock now. The interface seems very Apple Finder-esque now.

I feel like they're just aligning with macOS now. Not that I'm complaining, the video and the interface all are sexy.


I'm not a fan. A centered dock does look pretty, but to me it's not as intuitive as a left-aligned screen. Especially since you would be navigating to the "Start" menu a lot. Getting my mouse bottom left is more natural than "some random offset of dead bottom center".

I can't tell if the icons get larger as you hover. That sort of magnifies this problem, as the start button would shift left as other icons are highlighted.


Left aligned makes a ton of sense until you exceed a horizontal resolution of 2k or so. The web realized this ages ago - a left aligned page doesn't work at large screen sizes. With the web it isn't as critical (often times we have a browser window smaller than our full screen), but for a taskbar that spans the full horizontal resolution, left aligned doesn't make sense when you have a 5k ultrawide. Screen sizes will continue to slowly increase, centering the taskbar is futureproofing for that.


> Left aligned makes a ton of sense until you exceed a horizontal resolution of 2k or so. The web realized this ages ago

I think you're comparing apples and oranges though - with web pages, the issues are readability and aesthetics, whereas with the taskbar it's that icons are where you expect them to be (when centred, they will move as you open more windows).

IMO, a more apt comparison is the tabs of a browser, rather than the content the browser is showing.


It doesn't matter what size the screen is when I want to reach the corners. I just slam my mouse to the lower left and I know exactly where it will be.


Why is this downvoted? This is exactly the usability argument for having a bottom-left aligned Start menu, and it's based on robust evidence about how easily users can select controls of different sizes and in different places with a pointing device.

If you have such a large screen that you can't quickly move your pointer to anywhere on it, I suggest that you have a bigger problem with your system than where your Start menu appears.


Right? It's literally Fitt's Law, one of the first things we figured out for sure in UX.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fitts%27s_law


Not that i disagree, but who actually clicks on the start menu using the mouse? Just use the Windows button on the keyboard where your left hand is likely resting already.

Fun fact btw, in win 95 the border of the start button was not clickable, so slamming into the corner did not work because of that 2px border. Microsoft was proud of presenting this feature in later versions, don't remember if it was in 98, 2000 or XP.


> but who actually clicks on the start menu using the mouse?

Everybody except hn readers who live in their own bubble.


> Getting my mouse bottom left is more natural

There's a name for that: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fitts%27s_law

and the fact that their UI people somehow have forgotten about it speaks volumes.


I don’t think Fitt’s takes into account the “end of screen” concept, though? I guess it makes the width of the element infinite in some regards.


It considers "effective size". Something on the edge has "infinite effective size".


Yep, "magic corners" are considered infinite size in terms of Fitts's law, though with larger and larger screens it still takes time to get there.


It's Windows-- surely you'll be able to customize it to pin it to the left, or there will be 3rd-party software to do it for you.


Yep. There is an option in the leaked build, which is pretty old, to pin it to the left.


Fitts' Law didn't stop making the corners of a screen the most reliably reached parts just because some UI designer at Microsoft likes central alignment. I expect that central placement for the Start button to be objectively less efficient for users who frequently use that button, even if it's just a small but frequent irritation.


You can change the alignment to the "classic" left.


Left aligned taskbar sucks for 5760x1080


You geek.


Good news is you can still anchor the taskbar to the left. At least you can within the leaked ISO. Bad news is that the smallest taskbar size is bigger than the current smallest size.


Is that true? From the official microsoft site [0], I see:

> Taskbar functionality is changed including: Alignment to the bottom of the screen is the only location allowed.

[0] https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-11-specifica...

EDIT: Sorry I misread, you meant the icons. But yeah unfortunately it sounds like you can't move the taskbar as a whole anymore. I always kept mine at the top.


Well that does suck for me though, I've been using it on the left side of the screen for well over a decade now. Guess I'll have to get with the times (as arbitrary as they are).

Although considering I've seen no one else mention this issue, I'm guessing I'm a huge outlier.


yeah im at the first screenshot and it just looks awful

Have Microsoft forgotten the lessons they learned so hard since 1995? The start button being in the corner has real usability benefits.

They ruined the taskbar a long time ago, the button grouping thing is absolutely horrible and can only be partially turned off... hopefully they at a minimum kept the full button option somewhere.

And the centering... if new stuff is added and it recenters, it means things are moving all the time. eeek.


Microsoft's usability dementia started with them removing the 3D relief from toolbar buttons in Windows 98 to look like plain icons and making menubar labels indistinguishable from toolbar buttons (except text instead of icons) just for the sake of looks, despite all these having different user interactions.

Then again they were never completely consistent. For example in Win3.x design 3D elements were supposed to be for those that cause some command to be performed, yet the scrollbar visual design was the same as that of buttons.


The people 'reviewing' the leak last week mentioned that you can move the Start button back to the corner rather than having it centered.


Yeah, it looks like they finally just threw the towel in and admitted that macOS has had a superior design aesthetic, and started heading in the same direction.


The good news is they’re doing that just as apple is fucking it all up, having apparently put iOS designers in charge of macOS.

The bad news is Apple is fucking it all up, having apparently put iOS people in charge of macOS. The new safari looks insanely bad.


I'm still on Mojave because of the UI changes in Big Sur.


Probably more a return to form than anything. I seem to recall reading a book about the early (v 1.0 - 3.11) history of Windows where a developer recounted Bill Gates looking at early builds and asking if they could make it look more like Mac. Wish I could remember the title because that's going to gnaw at me for the rest of the day.


In what way is it superior? Shinier?


As a long time Linux-only-user (since 1996...) who is now forced by management to work on a MacBook: macOS just feels snappy. Things are where I would expect them to be. Files in the finder are actually what I searched for, and finding stuff is fast. UI animations give a clear indication on what is happening.

I still prefer i3 ... but I can understand why a nontechnical user might prefer a mac device to a windows(10) device. Someone at Apple clearly knows about UI/UX.


MacOS has, MacOsX has not. It seems that SW got autistic those days. ( no offence for autistic people)


I agree, but File Explorer seems to be the same ugly mess...


That's the thing with these Windows UI updates. It looks great until you fire up some application like Office and then it suddenly it's the same interface you were using before. Then you have this weird mix of aesthetics.


And still lack tabs!


I think it's probably closer to ChromeOS with the idea being centered is better for touch support.


There is no bloody touch on a desktop except on their braindead surface tablets. You can point your finger at the monitor but after some time, it hurts.


In that case the windows key is faster anyway.


XFCE, CDE, KDE and WindowMaker and AfterStep all had the same sort of dock look for many years.

At least we can finally go from one machine to another without too much of a difference or having to learn much - particularly good for those who only use what they "know".


Rounded corners and touchscreens, is that windows 8/vista again? What i want from windows is speed . More and more people are going to be using them to work from home, and not on a tablet or a laptop, but on a good old desktop pc, their sales are going up. What's the rationale behind this kind of regression to terrible windows 8? Can i plz have snappier windows 7 with slightly cleaner look?

> app developers can now bring their own commerce into our Store and keep 100% of the revenue – Microsoft takes nothing. App developers can still use our commerce with competitive revenue share of 85/15

This is great. That's how it s done


> Can i plz have snappier windows 7 with slightly cleaner look?

I wouldn't mind a complete visual regression to Windows 7. In fact, I remember that Win 7 Aero only had rounded corners.


> Win 7 Aero only had rounded corners.

Except that the rounding only happened on the window decoration, which took space. The client rendering area was a full rectangle. Now, they’re cutting corners out of the client rendering area.


> Rounded corners and touchscreens, is that windows 8 again?

Windows 8 distinctly had no rounded corners. The metro design language was quite square


right, win7 had some roundedness, but the unbelievable annoying launch screens for touchscreens were in win8 IIRC


Guessing they’re confusing 8 and Vista? I have no other explanation.


I use Linux now but keep windows VMs around for some legacy stuff. It takes about 5-10s to boot win7. It's snappy as heck, and reliable, even in a vm with minimal ram.


And, every program works


Touchscreen laptops and convertible laptops are becoming increasingly common, they can't just ignore this market segment.


increasingly common but still a tiny minority of their user base. others shouldn't suffer for that


I don't think so, the studies I've seen actually show the number of touchscreen devices is growing, and desktop PCs are shrinking.


but how are their sales doing? given the kind of apps that run on a PC, i think the touchscreen is just a gimmick that is barely used. Windows programs are just not made for tablets, and will never be


> i think the touchscreen is just a gimmick that is barely used.

I'll just say that my laptop (Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga) has a touchscreen and I love it. Every laptop I buy from here out will be a touchscreen merely because the ability to reach up while I type and just tap where i want my mouse to go next is such a better system than working with a nipple or trackpad.

I think as laptops with touchscreens become more affordable lots of people will change across. When i'm forced to work on my work laptop without KB&M, I really miss the ability to touch my screen instead of working with the god awful trackpad.


I would assume part of this is due to the trackpad. The only trackpads (of those I have used) that I would describe as better than "decent" have been on mac laptops.


The sales seem to be increasing, I wouldn't say it's a gimmick. Also touch support is not just for touchscreens, most laptops now have multi-touch touchpads where you can do gestures. Making a program support those already puts it significantly closer to having real touchscreen support, so it's not as hard or difficult as you'd imagine for older Windows programs to gain good tablet support.


maybe, but windows programs are so heterogeneous that i dont see how i will be able to use blender, browser, word, excel etc on a touchscreen .

Besides, this "touch-first" approach has been tried with win8 and in my experience it was atrocious


The point with those laptops is, you use the keyboard when it makes sense, and you use the touchscreen when that makes sense. I think you're confusing "touch-first" with "having any support for touchscreens at all," some concessions need to be made if you don't want it to be totally unusable on a device like that which has an optional touchscreen.


> App developers can still use our commerce with competitive revenue share of 85/15

But there isn't a perpetual Agreement guaranteeing MS won't ever increase its cut in the future when its store becomes more popular. The Store hasn't yet been terribly successful. Most of my Windows apps are installed outside the MS store: Notepad++, VSCodium, Steam, and so on. So MS will try to get more apps in the Store and then lock down Windows like iOS once it has enough apps, then increase its own cut so that it can transfer wealth from the middle class to billionaire MSFT shareholders, just like AAPL does.


It doesn't even matter, unless microsoft stops allowing programs outside the app store. But that will never happen given their ecosystem.


You know I kind of wish windows had a store, but then I tired installing apps using the current store and it's a terrible experience. They make it so hard for people with more than 1 hard drive to manage what goes where.


> Rounded corners and touchscreens, is that windows 8 again?

Transparent windows and widgets make it more like Vista.


Looks like a new version of KDE


... which the KDE will soon copy and the loop will continue forever


>> app developers can now bring their own commerce into our Store and keep 100% of the revenue – Microsoft takes nothing. App developers can still use our commerce with competitive revenue share of 85/15

> This is great. That's how it s done

It can't go on, though. Why won't every developer turn their app "free" and use Stripe or something to shave even more off the commerce fees? Meanwhile Microsoft eats hosting/maintenance/development on the store for zero return. We saw why Apple went the IAP route even if it's unpopular among developers and the fees could afford to be reduced.


This is fine? It means more people are on the platform and using Windows. Remember, Microsoft still makes money from every Windows computer sold.


Indirect revenue is why this is sustainable! Good on Microsoft for making the right choice here.


In the video, they're spending the first 20 seconds filing down the corners of the logo, having a big reveal of the blue Windows logo with rounded corners. This leads into the rest of the feature reveal, all round things now. But in the "end credits", the same blue Windows logo is back to its sharp cornered self again. Is this a subtle hint to the UI inconsistencies that are still to be expected after the major version bump, or is there another meaning?


Windows 11 logo uses rounded corners.

The official Microsoft logo is still flat square.


So, yet another level of UI inconsistencies[1].

[1] https://ntdotdev.wordpress.com/2021/02/06/state-of-the-windo...


One post says this, while another says

> The only real question is, will I still be able to get to the Network card configuration page that's been the same for the last 15-20 years. [I use it every day and don’t want them to make it into some simplified screen]

Microsoft truly can’t win!

One person praises it for being ugly while another for its beauty, while another criticises the central alignment of the taskbar and another says it’s a fundamentally stupid choice.


They could mostly win by making the new stuff actually fully functional; although any change would be annoying, the biggest part of "and don’t want them to make it into some simplified screen" is "simplified".


> will I still be able to get to the Network card configuration page that's been the same for the last 15-20 years

Just pull the band aid fast. Can't adjust the UI for inconsistencies in long time users muscle memory. They will adjust to a consistent UX.


Its so bad.

I don't know how this doesn't bug other people more. It's completely unfinished. Plenty of settings haven't moved from their XP or Windows 7 menus, as new "metro" 8/10 settings menus are created that have missing settings, new settings, and conflicting settings.

The new W10 interface to set a static IP will conflict with the old one (adapter properties) without telling you. Happy debugging.


As a late adopter to Win10 who hadn't been in a Windows environment since the early days of Win7, I was shocked how jarring ugly and inconsistent it was.

Win11 from what they've revealed looks like a moderate improvement? But I know what they're not showing is how the desktop will look with several non-native MS applications open, the nonsense of the theming across Office applications, and Explorer with its inexplicable tab bars.

It makes me disappointed that something so ubiquitous and essential to peoples' work can't aspire to be aesthetically, if not beautiful, at least nice.


Office and Explorer were actually shown in some other videos today, they've been updated to the new UI theme as well. As have paint/notepad. Edge as well, that combined with the Taskbar/Start menu and Store they demoed in the main video. Settings has also been completely restyled to match the new theme, don't remember which video(s) that was in though. The new Terminal (which can now replace command prompt as the default terminal for applications too) seems to fit in visually too.

Overall I don't think every Microsoft app ever made is going to get a facelift but it really seems like all of the main user facing apps have actually been updated together for once.


Comment on the Reddit thread where this screenshot was posted - https://old.reddit.com/r/Windows10/comments/o1x183/the_famou...

The ODBC Driver interface for configuration is tied to the old dialog.

The interface for the drivers was designed around GetOpenFileName() as it was at the time.

One of the features of GetOpenFileName/GetSaveFileName is that the structure passed in can include two special options- a function pointer to a hook routine, as well as a custom dialog template which windows will insert.

The functions were improved in Windows 95 with the "Explorer style". Even old programs get this style at the very least, because windows will imply the flag.

unless a template or hook routine is specified. See if a hook routine or template is specified and the OFN_EXPLORER flag is not, then the hook routine or template was designed for the old-style dialog. Windows uses the old-style dialog in this instance so that the program can run and doesn't crash.

The ODBC Driver configuration uses a dialog template to add the "read Only" and "Exclusive" checkboxes. That is why it shows the old style dialog.

People might say, "They should update it"

Update what?

If GetOpenFileName()'s ability to fallback to the old-style dialog is removed, than you won't see this dialog. Instead, it will crash. Cool. great experience.

the driver interface? OK great. so now there is a new version of the ODBC Driver interface. Now all the ODBC Drivers need to be updated. Some of the drivers were written by companies that are either out of business or rather different. I have this sneaking suspicion that Paradox software isn't going to be writing a new ODBC Driver for the MS-DOS Database.

Just drop everything? OK Cool.... so now companies get forcibly upgraded to Windows 11 and literally cannot do business because they rely on them in some manner. "They should upgrade". I won't get into that except to say it's the stupidest thing I've ever heard, but companies in that position are far more likely to find ways to not upgrade the software that caused the problem so, you know, they can keep doing business. And not upgrading the OS is certainly cheaper than countless thousands of man-hours in upgrading their Business software.

And a big thing people don't understand about backwards compatibility is it's not just about old programs working. It's about new ones working to.

If Microsoft removed all "backwards compatibility", than practically nothing would actually work. Software would be constantly crashing, sending error reports, etc. Now, call me crazy, but somehow that doesn't seem like it's a great experience. And if upgrading to Windows X+1 suddenly caused programs to crash left & right, nobody is going to blame the programs.


Thanks for the read. Actually, I have no problem with Win95 (and previous) era UI components, it's the layers of inconsistencies on top of that bothers me. The Windows 95 is still the best Windows UI of all times.


a very fair, honest review. yes, software ages with time, and with time piles of new layers are added and others cannot be removed for very obvious reasons.

people who fail to understand this have basically no clue about complex systems evolution over tens of years, or have only produced their own cloud-managed service.

so, yeah, Microsoft is faring very well. OSes after windows 7 are extremely stable considering the diversity of components and packages that run on top of it.

apple killing all backward compatibility is not necessarily a good thing. we are talking right to repair? then what what right does an OS vendor to kill backwards-compatible components?


The backwards compatability on Windows is truly great, particularly compared to Linux and macOS (where messages fired off when buttons are clicked silently disappear nowhere, and the button does nothing)....


There is no backward compatibility from Win 7 onwards. A lot of games stopped functioning in Win 7( you need to rename system dlls or change registry entries for them to work). And in win 10 they just don't work.


On one side of the house you have folks saying Windows 3.1 dialogs are still able to be referenced, on the other you have folks saying there is no backwards compatibility from Windows 7 onwards. Clearly both can't be true yet Windows gets the short end of the stick after each reference anyways :).

"Really old games" probably don't have the same backward compatibility weight as "really really really old business software". As a good example a friend of mine with a local business just had me migrate his 16 bit ordering system from the 90s... to Windows 10... and I'll be damned it worked.


> Start utilizes the power of the cloud and Microsoft 365 to show you your recent files no matter what platform or device you were viewing them on earlier

Well, consider me scared.


I mean this is basically just iCloud and users generally adore it. Having deep integration to say things like “get me the document I was working on my phone” or a global browser history search is really freakin cool.


I really don't need microsoft harvesting my personal documents and telemetry to power a start menu.

I'd be happy if they could finally get round to answering questions like "open the file called file.ext", rather than doing something terrifying like guessing what I might have meant by uploading absolutely everything to their own servers.


Here's a tool to check if your PC meets the hardware requirements[0].

However, it looks like many modern systems don't have TPM 2.0 enabled in the BIOS, and will come back with "This PC can't run Windows 11" (including mine - Asus Prime X470 Pro with Ryzen 2700X, 32GB RAM, 1.5TB storage, Radeon RX 5600 XT.)

[0] https://download.microsoft.com/download/1/d/d/1dd9969b-bc9a-...


TPM is required? That's great because it gives me a good reason to tell my boss we shouldn't switch to it. What are they thinking with that?


Maybe to better pin a license to a device? Or because google: https://chrome.googleblog.com/2011/07/chromebook-security-br...


I'm guessing somebody high up in sales is thinking "hey, we're Microsoft -- we're gonna dictate how this is going to go because people aren't going to want to be without the latest version of Windows!"

Smells like Classic Redmond Hubris.


Well. They're not wrong yet.


Since you're running Ryzen, you can enable firmware-based TPM in your UEFI settings and you should be good to go.

Screenshot of the security processor page: https://i.imgur.com/ZWtq8EO.png

Screenshot of the PC health check: https://i.imgur.com/Rb3eZIc.png


I'll have to check. I know that my Asus Prime X470 Pro lists TPM as "sold separately"; there's a connector on the motherboard, but the module itself is likely not present.

(For example: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1237446-REG/asus_tpm_... )


From the manual[1], it is an option under section 3.6.1 AMD fTPM Configuration. It's built into the CPU rather than the motherboard, but the motherboard can provide a separate hardware TPM.

[1]: https://dlcdnets.asus.com/pub/ASUS/mb/SocketAM4/PRIME_X470-P...


Ha I was in that PDF a few minutes ago. I saw "fTPM" but since it didn't list an explanation, I didn't know if it was an included TPM module or something else.


Apparently, my 3yo desktop isn't compatible (Gigabyte Z270X Ultra). I really doubt people will upgrade their hardware just to use Windows 11.


That doesn't sound right, search around in the BIOS for "Platform Trust Technology" or "PTT". If it's disabled, change it to enabled.


Just enabled PTT in the BIOS, but the tool still says my computer is not compatible (but it doesn't tell me exactly why).


You probably only have the header on your motherboard, without a tpm module actually plugged in. Mine was like this, and the specs for your motherboard suggest this is also the case for you. You can buy them on online pretty cheap (I got one for $20)


PTT is part of the CPU, no external TPM module is necessary. PTT is Intel's implementation, AMD have something similar called fTPM.

You do not need any external module on machines with fTPM/PTT support (i.e. if you bought it in the last few years).


You're right! And now I qualify for the win 11 beta. Looks like I got confused between two different security setting pages in the UEFI menu, and had just enabled "the ability for it to use a TPM plugged in to the header" instead of enabling PPT like I thought I was doing.


I guess my Phenom II-based system is SOL. No TPM, not even a connector on the motherboard, and of course it's pre-UEFI.

Oh well, Windows 10 will be the last MS OS to be installed on it, 100% Linux it is.


Until Linux distributions start requiring TPM as well.


Even if they do (and they won't), it will be very easy to disable that requirement...


Here they go again, messing with the start menu...

Hard to believe that they didn't learn from Windows 8, but they didn't.

Also: weren't we told multiple times that there would be no successor to Windows 10? That all future versions of Windows would just be updates?


Apparently this will be a free and in-place update from win10, so maybe that is compatible with what they meant by "just updates", even if it is a redesign.


Which, by the way, is pretty strong evidence that you will be the product (even if it weren't for the talk of "weaving in with your life" or whatever).


It will be reversed. Give it a year until windows 12 (The apologetic edition)


The only real question is, will I still be able to get to the Network card configuration page that's been the same for the last 15-20 years? I use it daily. They've just put it behind more and more "nicce looking, but non-functional" network management UIs,.


Classic network configuration is not good UI by any means, claustrophobic non-resizable windows with complicated nested hierarchy. But they somehow managed to make "Settings" not better, with huge whitespace and a lot less functional...


I haven't used windows in a while, but it used to be: win+r > ncpa.cpl


Oh yeah.. I fucking hate Windows 10, a few weeks ago I had to check these settings and I got lost every time.. I think they've completed the web-pagization of the control panel nowadays.


Well, right now it's: Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Network and Internet -> Network and Sharing Center -> Change adapter settings. I'm sure they will add " -> Ad for Steve Ballmer's Basketball Team -> ".


I think I can still get to that view by right clicking on the bottom right thing for wifi


Win + R, control netconnections


Linux desktop is getting there... (Not sure, though, what an "ideal" UNIX desktop is supposed to be like.)


No mentions about privacy, more bundled in apps, more "AI", more cloud connectivity. I don't know what I even expected.


> The web was born and grew up on Windows

I think CERN engineers while working on web and www protocol were using unix as windows was not even there yet.

https://home.cern/science/computing/birth-web


I'm sure they're refering to the undying love every single web developer had for Internet Explorer.


I'm of the opinion that it doesn't matter what they are referring to. What they are clearly suggesting is false, and they should know better.

> The web was born and grew up on Windows

The first part is just a lie, the second part is open for interpretation, but certainly not the formative years.


In the late 90s, IE4 and then IE5 was the gold standard. We were all ecstatic when we didn't have to support Netscape 4 anymore. It wasn't until Firefox (more specifically Firebug) was mature that IE lost the crown.


Maybe for you. For us the best usage of IE was to download Netscape Navigator .


That's completely the way I remember it!


IE4 maybe, it was downhill after that.


I'm pretty sure this was a sarcastic comment


Yeah, that's an odd statement. Windows 3 didn't exist in 1989, and nobody really used Windows 2. The web wasn't "born" there for sure.


Thats not even mentioning the complete dominance of Linux in the server space for decades.


> decades

I'd like to think that, but I am not sure if that's actually true.


>I'd like to think that, but I am not sure if that's actually true.

It's hard to get real numbers, for sure. There's counts based on what the server shipped with, when those used to be bundled, which favors Windows. And there's counts of active servers on the internet, which favors Unix-like. Both counts are fundamentally flawed for various reasons.

I did, though, get a chuckle out of Microsoft's slide that showed more Linux instances than Windows ones on Azure: https://build5nines.com/linux-is-most-used-os-in-microsoft-a...


I'm like 99% sure the first www server was on an NeXT machine.


And subsequently Sun machines. "The Network Is the Computer".


More accurately: the web survived Windows


too early to tell


Let's not forget https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackbird_(online_platform). Bill Gates was actively trying to kill the internet in 1995.


> The web was born and grew up on Windows

For many home users that is a reality, even if it is not historically accurate. And, more importantly, I think that highlights the current position of Windows.

In the 90s and 2000s, Windows was synonymous with computing, the office and the Internet. Nowadays, Android and iPhone are the point of contact with the world for most people. Windows has lost that position.

What I read is "The web was born and grew up on Windows" ... and we want Windows to be its future. That is what, I think, it follows from that statement and the goal of Windows 11.


NeXTSTEP specifically, for the browser and the server.


Came here to say pretty much this; add to that Bill Gates' "the internet is just a passing fad" attitude at the time, this comes across as a complete whitewash of history. I know it's just a PR fluff piece so it's not like I'm going to write any angry letters, but I had to shake my head a bit at that.


Yeah that line, along with others, is almost offensive. Microsoft tried really hard to stop the open web during the time they were building early Windows. They're trying to take credit for something that popular that they tried really hard to stop.


Not almost, it is simply a blatant lie. Now, how should I trust Microsoft if they can't avoid a lie (that is totally unnecessary btw) in their press release that was probably carefully crafted and approved by several levels of managers? It's like saying "we can do whatever we want, no matter if it's good or wrong, as long as in line with our interests." Shame.


"We tried to adopt, extend and extinguish this golden child in our possessive embrace, hobble it to us as was our custom, but it grew up all the stronger for fighting us, and shouldn't we all be grateful for that?"


Well, they did try to merge the web browser with the desktop (and, I as far as I remember, got sued for that).


> We’re also pumped to announce that we are bringing Android apps to Windows for the first time

This is super cool, but honestly I don't see myself using any Android apps on Windows.


The way it's worded also implies it's going to be a loooong road before it's anything like production ready.

Like you though, I can't imagine why I'd want to use Android apps on my desktop... I'd prefer to use my Android phone/tablet, where such apps were designed to run. Now, I'm thinking maybe I'm not the target market for this feature... but then I wonder, who is? For example, they mention TikTok - does your average TikTok user even have a Windows PC? And if so, why would they prefer to sit in front of a desktop to view short videos, rather than their phone or TV?


Laptops are still a thing. I imagine the age group of TikTok users includes a lot of students. A phone won't cut it for anything like schoolwork. The Surface line of Windows PCs and the multitudes of 2-in-1s are very touch-centric and can act as big tablets. The "sit in front of a desktop" association is a bit outdated.


> Starting later this year, people will be able to discover Android apps in the Microsoft Store and download them through the Amazon Appstore

I probably shouldn't expect different, but it's a bummer that you apparently won't be able to to load paid Google Playstore apps. I have several reference apps that are paid and would love to run those on my desktop since no web or native app exists.


Doesn't Windows have a built in tool to mirror this from an existing Android phone? Clearly not the same, but maybe an option.


I run chromeOS as my daily driver, and find a few android apps quite useful (I run linux apps too). There are lots of apps that are mobile-only which are nice to have a second copy of or use the big screen; google maps is possibly my favourite, much better than the web version.

There's also just more developer focus on android than windows for a lot of small apps like free VPNs, currency converters etc, leading to better choice/quality/discoverability than native windows apps.


It is just like Apple did with their new M1 MacBooks


Yeah but the question is, would this only be for ARM Windows?


I couldn't find Microsoft Teams on the Microsoft app store today. Maybe they should fix that first.


Teams is built in in Windows 11


> Windows 11 will be available through a free upgrade for eligible Windows 10 PCs and on new PCs beginning this holiday.

Wow!


> this holiday

Which holiday? Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year, Labor Day... Fourth of July?

Maybe Halloween would be appropriate, given how scary any major Windows upgrade is to enterprise orgs.

If they said "this holiday season", that would probably mean December timeframe, but they don't say that.

They repeat this confusing reference later on:

> The free upgrade will begin to roll out to eligible Windows 10 PCs this holiday and [...]


Some American holiday presumably? Just like the video starting at "8am PDT" or whatever.

Why can't they just a) commit to a date or month, and b) specify UTC time for their launches.


This was unclear to me as well. “This holiday” is not a phrase I’ve ever really heard in casual conversation or in the media register. I know the British “go on holiday” but that means vacation.

Their PR/marketing department dropped the ball on this specific phrase. At the same time it seems that marketing department slip ups are common these days.

If they mean Christmas time, I.e. December or winter, they should just say December or winter. That would be more clear.


I'm quite sure it was supposed to say "this holiday season", which indeed would imply December?


Which december ?


rofl, they mean December you pedant


Holiday almost always means sometime mid-November to December.


This is a particularly awful example of Americentrism. Going by season names is bad enough (this is a habit of Americans, Canadians and Europeans, which doesn’t work much beyond the northern hemisphere’s temperate and sub-arctic regions), especially for “fall”; but people in the rest of the world will normally eventually be able to figure it out. But this use of “holiday” is utterly unknown to most of the world and is nigh impossible to figure out without someone telling you what it is. As an Australian, I only learned about it last year, and my considered guess as to what it meant was wrong—I guessed somewhere in the middle of the year, when school is not operating during the summer. (We call the breaks between terms “school holidays”, most significantly of the summer break, which for us is mid–late December until the end of January or so.)


Where ?


"We don't need to sell you anything, your data is enough"


"Free upgrade" from Microsoft doesn't bode well. I wonder:"what's the catch?"


i won't rush, always wait a few years


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