Microsoft Windows 11 and what it means for your business?

Windows has launched but should you upgrade now?

Windows 11 is out now.  It may be tempting to download the upgrade if your machine is compatible, but our advice would be to think very carefully before moving to Windows 11 at this early stage in its release.

As The Register reports, Gartner research vice president Stephen Kleynhans refers to Windows 11 as an “overdue facelift,” which doesn’t offer enough new features or changes. “All of these capabilities could have been released as just another feature update for Windows 10.”

As has been the case with operating system releases in the past, there are proving to be some bugs and issues which will no doubt be resolved promptly but are nonetheless occurring.  Windows 11 is the first major operating system release since Windows 10 in 2015.

There is no hurry to move to Windows 11

Windows 10 will be supported until October 2025 and updates will continue as usual.

New hardware purchased at the time of publishing, will be Windows 11 capable with access to a free upgrade and some devices will have Windows 11 preloaded. Hardware purchased over the last couple of years at least – should be capable of accepting the Windows 11 upgrade which at the point of publishing will be free to Windows 10 users.

Microsoft offer their own PC health check tool for users to check Windows 11 compatibility, although at the point of publishing there has been feedback that the results are not always clear or accurate.

This opensource app is getting more positive feedback and is free to use.

What’s in Windows 11?

Windows 11 Security and Updates

Microsoft are marketing Windows 11 as the most secure release yet.  Windows 11 will only start if your machine is Secure Boot enabled.

Updates will be considerably smaller in size (by about 40%) and largely applied ‘in the background’ rather than disturbing your working day.

Windows 11 Dock replaces Task Bar

The taskbar is optimized for touch as well as mouse peripherals and is now renamed the dock.  Reminiscent of the macOS in its layout – it is easier on the eye and reminds you of what apps you have open.  The ‘Recommended’ feature will also signpost you to files you have recently accessed via your Microsoft account (regardless of which device you have accessed it from). 

Windows 11 supports working from home

Virtual desktops in Windows 11 supports those using their own devices to work from home.  Windows 11 will enable you to create a separate desktop for work and pleasure.

Improved Workflows

Changes to how windows are displayed will provide a better workflow experience.  The ‘Snap’ feature enables you to arrange multiple windows across the screen, not just side by side, but in columns, sections and more.

Planning your journey to Windows 11

At the point your business machines move to Windows 11, there will be new features and layouts and hence a learning curve for users to get the best from them. 

Our advice would be to check your inventory of machines now to identify which machines will need upgrading before October 2025 because they are not Windows 11 compatible.  Identify those machines that ARE Windows 11 compatible.

Take advice before upgrading an existing, compatible Windows 10 machine to Windows 11 from your infrastructure support team.

When a Windows 10 PC needs replacing, provide it to a staff member who is most likely to explore the new features and document their value to your business and take advice from your infrastructure support team.

In this way – as you include more Windows 11 machines to your inventory, there will be an existing knowledge base within your business to support end users as this new operating system rolls out across your business over time.

Thought for the Day

Any Windows 7 machines on your network should be replaced immediately.  Windows 10 machines will continue receiving updates until October 2025.

Rush forward slowly accepting updates to Windows 11 at the point of publishing and take advice before you do.  Contact Qi for further information