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Microsoft Releases Windows 11

By Chris Wilson

So, you may have heard the news that Microsoft has released Windows 11; with the promise of being the best operating system so far, what exactly does this mean for you? We’ve asked our expert team for their thoughts.

What's New?

From what we have seen, this feels more like a visual upgrade to Windows 10 than a completely new operating platform to get to grips with. Gone are the sharp edges of the older versions, which have now been replaced with rounded corners and new text fonts – giving Windows 11 a sleeker, more modern look. A new start button location and several new themes will certainly give it a different look and feel, but once you work past the visuals the functionality will feel very familiar. One new aspect of Windows 11 did catch our eye though – the promise of much faster security updates.

System requirements to be able to install Windows 11 (Subject to change):

  • Processor – 1Ghz or faster on compatible 64-bit processor
  • RAM – 4GB minimum
  • Storage – 64GB storage
  • System firmware – UEFI, Secure Boot capable
  • Trusted Platform Module – Version 2.0
  • Graphics Card – Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver

As a quick reckoner, if you’ve got the ubiquitous i5 processor, it needs to be an eighth generation or newer, meaning any machines built before 2018 are likely to be too old. If your machine could be borderline, look for this logo:

8th Gen Intel Core i5 Badge

The TPM 2.0 requirement (which helps system security) gets more confusing, but machines older than four years old are also unlikely to comply.

If you are worried about whether your PC will be compatible; you can download the PC Health Check app to see if your PC can run Windows 11.

Do you need the update anyway?

As you can see, the system requirements to be able to install Windows 11 onto your device are fairly extensive. This may stop many users being able to take advantage of the free upgrade from Windows 10 – in fact, we surveyed our clients and around half of them do not currently have the system requirements to meet the threshold for the installation. So, is this a problem? We don’t think so.

Microsoft Teams and the promise of less frequent and faster security updates sounds good but is it enough to make you upgrade your hardware for? It is important to note that the built-in Microsoft Teams feature is purely for home use. Business users will need to install Microsoft Teams separately.

As Windows 11 rolls out and improvements are implemented, there may be a critical tipping point when it becomes best to swap over.

Will I need to buy a new PC?

With Windows 10 being supported until October 2025, it seems there won’t be the rush to upgrade hardware. We foresee this will be a more phased switchover by most interested parties. Upgrades to the new system are likely to happen when it is right for the individual or company as most of the functionality will remain the same between the two systems.

Microsoft have boasted that 99.7% of apps should continue to work with Windows 11 and 32-bit apps continue to be supported, but it is important to highlight the potential challenges that might arise from some older apps with features that could cause potential hiccups. It is therefore important to build and test before rolling out to users.

Businesses are increasingly using web-based applications. In some cases, these applications continue to use legacy browser features and have relied on Internet Explorer to run correctly. Internet Explorer has been dropped from Windows 11. As Internet Explorer is no more, there could be a compatibility issue in Edge, so businesses would be wise to test that web applications continue to run OK in Edge.

A new OS is always somewhat disruptive at first as there is a certain amount of trial and error and a good deal of testing when it rolls out in any enterprise. We’ll keep you posted with any major developments as they arise.

Would you like to find out more about Windows 11 capabilities and if it is right for you to upgrade? Contact us to discuss Windows 11.

man using windows 11 on laptop