back to article Windows 11 in detail: Incremental upgrade spoilt by onerous system requirements and usability mis-steps

Microsoft has released Windows 11, a refreshed version of the operating system with internal improvements but tarnished by onerous system requirements and usability shortcomings. Windows 11 is the operating system that Microsoft once hinted it might never release, saying back in 2015: "With Windows 10, the experience will …

  1. katrinab Silver badge

    "We have evolved our design language alongside with Fluent to create a design which is human, universal and truly feels like Windows"

    To me, it feels more like a cheap knock-off of MacOS.

    1. a_yank_lurker

      Cheap or incompetent knock-off?

      1. Jeroen Braamhaar

        Are those two mutually exclusive then ?

      2. katrinab Silver badge
    2. MyffyW Silver badge

      If my Windows 10 build had Notepad or Paint I'd be happy. Well not happy, exactly. Just slightly less pissed off....

      1. Pigeon


        All these things are available on Notepad++ and Other handy stuff is also available. I hope you weren't moaning just for the sake of it :)

        1. MyffyW Silver badge

          Re: Notepad

          ty @Pigeon, appreciate your public spirited suggestions, indeed I have Notepad++.

          Moaning for the sake of it? I resemble that remark :-)

      2. The Real SteveP

        Mine has both? I just hit the Windows button, and type 'notepad' or 'paint', and either one will open...

    3. VicMortimer Silver badge

      That's all it's ever been. MS has been doing an incredibly cheap and incompetent job of copying Mac OS since Windows 1.0.

      For the last several years, Apple has been returning the favor, so both operating systems get consistently worse with every new version.

      1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Seeing as MacOS itself was a copy of Xerox's stuff, this is just how things work.

        Then again, I think a lot of users are blind to some of the details (though this is often just what you want) and just keep doing things the way they always have, no matter how long it takes.

        1. Steve Todd

          I’m guessing you’ve never seen an Alto running

          Apple may have used the ideas of WIMP (for which they paid Xerox in shares BTW), but MacOS looked and felt nothing like the Xerox machine.

    4. JimboSmith Silver badge

      To me, it feels more like a cheap knock-off of MacOS.

      To me it seems like yet another reason to use another OS. I hate the flat UI that is now becoming prevalent in various different OS and software. It might be fine for the youngsters but for me (getting on a bit) it's a right pain.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Wait til you get even older and start complaining about "busy" interfaces.

        Flat UIs are way easier to comprehend and are a lot more cohesive than skeuomorphic ones with shadows and 3D looking icons etc.

        If done right, it also makes support a lot easier for those of us that have to guide old fogies around over the phone etc...especially when colour is used correctly and for those out there that are colour blind...shapes or glyphs.

        I'm not defending the Windows is crap...but to use it as a shining example of how a design language sucks...I disagree.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          How can a Flat UI be easier to comprehend?

          Flat UIs hide the edge of buttons, and bars, making it less clear where you can click or drag, this is especially true for things that are clickable but don't even look like a button at all.

          Buttons with shadows, 3D, or some other method to make a UI elements actually stand out from the background, are far far easier to use than flat UIs.

          Flat UI simply breaks all good practice for a UI. The sooner this atrocious fad ends, and we go back to following actual well understood and researched good practice for UIs, the better for everyone.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Flat UI fans

            always seem to have 20/20 vision. They forget that many of us are not as young as we once were and our eyes are not as sharp as they were when we were in our 20's.

            My grandson upgraded and proudly showed it off to me last night. It is an unadulterated mess of inconsistencies and 'why the heck did they do that?'

            My last Windows laptop will not support W11 which is actually a blessing. I'll keep it on W10 until is expires and that will be me done with Microsoft.

            I suspect that I will not be alone in that.

            We all consider Vista to be a big footgun moment for MS. But... will W11 be an even bigger one?

            The jury is out on that.

            1. TRT Silver badge

              Re: Flat UI fans

              Not only that, Apple seem insistent on invisible UI elements. Scroll bars that appear and disappear with greater abandon than declarations on a politician's tax return. Add to that useful but persistent UI elements that happily cover up other slightly more useful UI elements, such as the (Library | Store) button in iTunes/Music search function which is covered up by the Playing Next panel, or the LEAVE button in Microsoft Teams which is obscured by all the Chats popping up saying "Bye! Thanks for a great meeting!!!), and you get a UI with a UX more frustrating than trying to trying to pick broken egg shell out of the rapidly cooking white of a fried egg!

              UI/UX? More like UI/ Danger UXB!

              1. David Nash

                Re: Flat UI fans

                Yeah disappearing scroll bars...what's that all about?

                1. TRT Silver badge

                  Re: Flat UI fans

                  They explain those right at the bottom of the page.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Flat UI fans

                Firstly, if you use the eggshell the egg came out of as a spoon, you'll find eggshell is really easy to get out of the pan. Egg shell is very good at sticking to other eggshell. You're welcome.

                Secondly, invisible elements suck yes, but imagine how ugly it'd look with them visible and how often you'd accidentally scroll the screen if you were trying to swipe in from the edges for something.

                UI design is full of trade offs. Some of them work, some of them don't.

                What phone manufacturers need to do is release "old bastard" versions of phones similar to how some tablets are aimed at know the ones with big rubber handles etc.

                I am considering designing a phone for old duffers.

                From the creators of the world famous "No dad, I didn't call you, I'm at work, it's 10am on a Tuesday, automated response" app...

                The Old Phone XL.

                1. One edge that functions as a bottle opener.

                2. Instead of a camera at the top, a spirit level bubble.

                3. No support for any scrolling content of any kind. If content is likely to overflow the screen, it should automatically dial your son/daughter/grandson/granddaughter after sending them a message with a heads up that they're about to lose an hour of the day resetting a password and listening to someone rant about "busy interfaces" and "what was wrong with Nokia?".

                4. A left handed version because of point 8 below.

                5. Physical buttons for dialling and a detachable handset for speaking.

                6. A form factor small enough that it can fit in the glove box of your car over the top of the car manuals.

                7. A permanently attached 12v car charger.

                8. A steel handle on the side like a pint mug.

                9. For the older ladies, a rope loop for the top to attach a tassle to so you don't miss calls because you have to empty your handbag to find the phone.

                10. A special dialler that tells you your kids didnt call you, before you call to ask, because you're sure you heard the phone ring. Right?

                11. A brand new touch sensor specifically calibrated to work with a biro.

                12. Cutting edge security that includes:

                12.1. A choice of three passwords.

                12.2. Absolutely no inbound calls whatsoever.

                13. A bulldog clip on the back to hold a paper notepad, lottery ticket and your biro.

                14. A strong, permanent, neodimium magnet for holding your paper clip, because you never know.

                15. A side mounted plastic tube capable of holding up to £10 in change.

                16. A foldable screen the size of the Times broadsheet with top mounted clips and antislip coating to conveniently mount your newspaper to.

                17. Built in knife sharpener.

                18. A free 12 month subscription to the "I told you 10 minutes ago dad, I didn't call you" service including free access to the "Is that you son? Are you there? Can you Google something for me?" voice assistant...just dial your sons number and be instantly redirected to an actual voice assistant.

                Optional accessories...

                1. USB-C compatible potting dibber. Simply plug in and easily make holes in soil for planting seeds.

                2. USB-C compatible penknife blade. Simply plug in and peel as many apples as you like*

                3. 12 months subscription to our revolutionary calendar app. Just get your kids to fill in everyones birthday and we'll send you a print out every month.

                Limited time offer:

                Buy now and get a free Parker pen**

                *not compatible with the built in knife sharpener.

                **not compatible with built in biro touch interface.

                50% discount if you buy £500 worth of Amazon vouchers and read the codes to us over the phone. It's ok we'll stay on the line while you queue up at the till.

                1. TRT Silver badge

                  Re: Flat UI fans

                  No need to be insulting.

                  Some good ideas. however, about enabling persons with various physical conditions to make use of technology.

                  The invisible scroll bar DOES do exactly what you say anyway! Try it with the BBC News app - scrolling down with your finger too near the right edge of the screen causes the page to leap about.

                  I was also talking about the computer OS, not the mobile OS.

            2. Robert Helpmann??

              Re: Flat UI fans

              We all consider Vista to be a big footgun moment for MS. But... will W11 be an even bigger one?

              Maybe, but does it rise sink to the level of Windows ME or Win8? Only time will tell, but I expect it to do so most emphatically.

              1. D@v3

                Re: Windows versions

                Remember. Every other (major) windows release is shit.

                (11), 10, (8), 7, (Vista) XP, (ME) 98

                (I know some people on here would say EVERY, but that's another argument for another day)

                1. fung0

                  Re: Windows versions

                  The silly myth of bad/good 'alternating versions' never dies, even though it doesn't hold up to even the most casual scrutiny. Life is not that simple:

                  Windows 1.0 - ambitious, but not useful.

                  Windows 286/386 - good enough.

                  Windows 3.0 - excellent.

                  Windows 3.1/3.11 - even better.

                  Windows 95 - excellent.

                  ... (Windows NT - ambitious but not beautiful.)

                  Windows 98 - better yet.

                  Windows Me - flawed.

                  ... (Windows 2000 - superlative.)

                  Windows XP - excellent.

                  Windows Vista - flawed.

                  Windows 7 - better.

                  Windows 8 - garbage.

                  Windows 10 - slightly less horrible.

                  1. HenryCrun

                    Re: Windows versions

                    You forgot Windows Bob (

                    From what has been previewed so far W11 really looks about as welcome as Bob, perhaps we should start calling W11 "Robert".

                    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

                      Re: Windows versions

                      a security monitoring company here in the USA has TV ads with a spokesman (an obvious thief) named "Robbert Larson". We could call it THAT (or similar to avoid trademark theft)

                  2. Jakester

                    Re: Windows versions

                    I wouldn't label Win 3.0 as excellent. With 3.0, and only Excel and Word installed, I would get at least two unrecoverable application errors a day. Very frustrating piece of garbage. Yes, 3.1 was much better.

                  3. Adrian 4

                    Re: Windows versions

                    Your criteria for 'excellent' doesn't match mine.

                    'Usable' is as far as I'd go on any of those. And I've used all of them.

                  4. Mike01Hu

                    Re: Windows versions

                    Windows??? Are you telling me there's something different to DOS? Hmm, time to upgrade then . . . or perhaps not!

                2. A.P. Veening Silver badge

                  Re: Windows versions

                  I am missing 2K in that list (and that was way better than XP until SP2).

                3. Adrian 4

                  Re: Windows versions

                  Are they improving ?

                  Back in the day, only every third version of Windows was usable.

            3. bombastic bob Silver badge
              Thumb Up

              Re: Flat UI fans

              We all consider Vista to be a big footgun moment for MS. But... will W11 be an even bigger one?

              This comparison was running in my head the entire time I was reading that article.

            4. Binraider Silver badge

              Re: Flat UI fans

              Vista, for all its comedy rep and bad driver situation at launch really wasn’t that badly a designed UI. 7, effectively vista SP4 more than proved that.

              W8, insane flat UI, that daft point your mouse-at-the-corner nobutton nonsense… they have not grown out of the obsession with mobile phone design in 10 or 11. Remember how hurried 8.1 was launched to deal with flak concerning UI stupidity.

              The attempt to introduce a new standard is what it is, but ms being MS means there are 30 year old dialogues still using old UI. The phone Dialler the most extreme example - admittedly one not really used much now.

              Win 12 will be out by the time my employer moves from win 10, so i can largely ignore prototyping shenanigans. When ms office jumps UI that’s when we will hear the most complaints. Flat ribbon will, I sure, be horrible.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Because flat UIs are supposed to be all about contrast. Your buttons are supposed to contrast with the background, not be a slightly different shade of the background.

            If your background is blue, you make your buttons orange or green for example. You don't make them a lighter shade of blue.

            If a flat UI is hard to use, it's not because flat UIs suck, it's because that specific flat UI sucks because the designer didn't know what they were doing.

            They're not supposed to look good, they're supposed to be function over form.

            If you rely on things like shadows and borders to highlight things and you have a UI that contains a lot of buttons and objects, you create a mess...not only that, you have to pack things in tighter because all those 1-2px borders and 2-3px shadows all take up space on the screen which leads to things looking cluttered especially when you start having to worry about scaling the UI up or down to fit different screen sizes. Your elements can end up being up to 5px bigger in each direction or even more in some cases.

            When people harken back to the Windows 95 style UI for example, and they're talking about how "easy it was to understand what you had selected" etc...they're talking about the contrast....


            Take the Windows 95 start menu for example (image above)...the bevelled edges and icons have absolutely no bearing on the navigation...its the contrast between the navy blue and grey that makes things obvious to the user in terms of navigation. Each subfolder has the same freakin' icon for christ sake...and the launchers have really shitty icons that in only half the cases there, make sense...

            My point is a shitty UI is a shitty UI because of it's execution, not the methodology used.

            I'm entirely indifferent when it comes to flat user interfaces...I just can't stand it when people write off entire concepts because of a couple of bad executions. It always sounds to me like "I don't the Mona Lisa, it has a very similar colour pallete to Quake 2 and I'm not big into that kind of colour pallete".

            Pretty much everyone hates avocado coloured bathrooms, but you don't write off having a bathroom because avocado exists as a colour pallete. Jesus.

            This so called website has a UI that is as flat as pancake, but you never hear people complain about the UI...just it's hack journos and slightly below average content. ;)

        2. fedoraman

          Hmm, not sure I wholly agree. But matters of taste aside, one thing I really find hard on Windows 10 is windows that have no border. If you have one window overlaid on another, its really hard to see where one ends and others begin. The Windows calculator is a particular example of this, say when you open it to do a small calculation whilst working on a document.

        3. Adrian 4

          But the current windows interface gains no clarity from the undecorated UI. It's a mess of differently-sized and poorly differentiated objects that is simply hard to navigate.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward



    6. ecofeco Silver badge

      All I feel is wanked marketing speak.

      1. TRT Silver badge

        They went for Windows 11 over the slightly less catchy "Windows 10 - Harry Monk edition"

    7. markrand

      >> "We have evolved our design language alongside with Fluent to create a design which is human, universal and truly feels like Windows"

      What has computational fluid dynamics got to do with GUI development??

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "We mention this to illustrate how simplifying the user interface may also complicate it, for those who want to go beyond what is obvious"

    So they made easy things slightly easier and made complicated things much more complicated, got it.

    1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

      They also managed to mangle the standard typewriter/font test: it's "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog", not "jumped". The latter means that the letter "s" is not included. I know this is a relatively minor thing, but it does show a lack of attention to detail that I find troubling.

      1. Flywheel

        That Minor Thing (Tm) will be fixed in the next 27Mb Friday Patch - no worries!

        1. Julian 8

          27MB - that all ?

        2. Plest Silver badge

          W11 core footprint is minimum 60GB, Lord only knows what's in there! I have a Raspberry PI zero that runs on an O/S footprint that's so small it almost makes my old ZX Spectrum proud!

      2. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

        I just noticed that the image also includes "We have evolved our design language alongside with Fluent...". Looks like they're attempting to evolve the English language too.

      3. David Nash

        Looks like whoever wrote it missed the whole point of that sentence!

        We need a "whoosh!" icon.

      4. Someone Else Silver badge

        @Hubert Cumberdale -- (untitled)

        Lack of attention to detail, or arrogant stupidity in not knowing (or caring) what the purpose of the typewriter font test is? You decide...

        That may well be an inclusive 'or'...

        1. -v(o.o)v-

          Re: @Hubert Cumberdale -- (untitled)

          Or both?

          It's a dumpster fire, may it flop hard and pox on its creators (since we will be forced to use this POS in a few years)

  3. A2Z

    wtf, square windows, round context menus...

    1. Paul Herber Silver badge

      Round things, square things ... this is starting to sound like Play School (BBC children's TV).

      1. MyffyW Silver badge

        Chloe and Fred would build a better OS. I think Hamble went on to study software engineering at Leicester Poly.

        1. Howard Sway Silver badge

          Fred had a multimedia computer with sound recording and video playback back in 1981!

          He even drove an electric truck, decades before Musk. And often rocked the hard hat look well before Peter Norton.

      2. TRT Silver badge

        Have you not heard? TED talks have become so popular that they're being divided into two concurrent sessions... Big TED and Little TED.

  4. Chris Miller

    Not a pangram

    The fox must jumpS (not jumpED) over the dog.

    Apart from that, meh.

    1. D@v3

      Re: Not a pangram

      maybe they have a problem rendering an S and were hoping no one would notice

  5. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

    Okay, now I get it. Borkzilla developers are young whippersnappers continually glued to their mobile phones, so obviously they think it's a good thing that their PC UI act in the same way. That way, they don't have to get used to a different environment. On top of that, they must all be using Surface or whatever other monstrosity with a touchscreen, so obviously, that's the way to go. Because everyone is using a touchscreen on their desktops, right ?

    Never mind that more than a billion Windows users are using "normal" screens, never mind that, as of now, no less than TWO entire generations of Windows users have been used to the ol' Windows 3.11, XP, or 7 interface (or all of them), no, the new generation of developers wants its smartphone interface on a desktop and, by God, they're going to have it.

    Well they can keep it to themselves. Absolutely everything in this article is rubbing me the wrong way. A Start Menu section I can't get rid of ? Fuck off.

    Windows 11 ? Not in my house.

    1. RobThBay

      Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

      The company further explains that "every glyph in our system icon font has been redesigned to embrace a softer geometry and more modern metaphors."

      I'm guessing the little darlings spent more time ...embracing softer geometry and more modern metaphors... than doing anything useful.

      WTH is "more modern"? Will next weeks font tweek be called "even more modern"?

      1. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        A longstanding UI & programming Advice was never to name anything "modern". For precisely the reason you've pointed out : this year's Modern is next year's Old-Fashioned.

        1. Captain Hogwash

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          She's so 20th century

          She's so 1970s....

        2. David Nash

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          They decided to do it this year. Therefore it's "modern" and shall be defended as such.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

            And next year's will be "postmodern". The year after will be "post-postmodern".

            1. captain veg Silver badge

              Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"



        3. D@v3

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          if you're making an Old Fashioned, I'll have one, cheers.

        4. Robert Grant

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          Sorry, I consider that offensively Modernist. I should know, I studied at New College.

      2. Plest Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        "embracing softer geometry and more modern metaphors"

        I did that and the wife caught me, the sofa did not offer a comfortable night's kip!

      3. Someone Else Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        "more moderner"

    2. Adelio

      Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

      If Microsoft could just STOP messing with Windows and fix all the bugs!

      The last thing I want is a simpler interface. The trend seems to be to just have a few text boxes and buttons on a screen and LOTS and LOTS of space. Which ends up with MANY screens and scrolling to see a small amount of information.

      I am happy with Windows 7 menus (thank you very much) and in fact i have been using classic shell and others for many years.

      I scream every time my mouse gets too close to the left/right edge and that dammed sidebar pops up!

      1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        If only there were some sort of OS where the OS were separate from the GUI, so the user can select the UI of his choice - or no GUI at all, if that's what he wants.

        Oh, wait...

    3. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

      The thing is that the developers could quite easily put their "new, improved" interface as the default; and then allow everybody else disagreeing that using a mobile phone interface designed for a 8" screen on a pair of 24" screens is an improvement could perhaps select "classic" from a menu and just use something akin to the interface that looks and feels familiar to people who used NT4, 95, 98, ME, 2k, XP and Win7.

      Now when Microsoft was trying to force their way into the mobile phone market it did make some sort of sense to piss off all of the desktop users by forcing a mobile phone interface on them; some people might have then been happy with a Microsoft phone because of familiarity with the interface.

      But Microsoft have abandoned this strategy; so what's with forcing a pointless change to a mobile UI?

      1. ThatOne Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        > But Microsoft have abandoned this strategy; so what's with forcing a pointless change to a mobile UI?

        Clueless MS developers are desperately trying to be "fresh" and "hip". Lacking the slightest clue about what Windows is actually used for, they go by numbers: There are more smartphones than computers out there, which obviously must mean the smartphone GUI is the desirable thing. A chance there are more smartphones than cars, else your Windows would now have a steering wheel and pedals.

        It's the same "logic" as the famous "billions of flies can't be wrong, eat shit". And in both cases the conclusion is to feed you shit.

        1. Joe W Silver badge

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          Well, if that was the case, the Windows Phone would not have been a flop...

          (and I really want it back! And that's from a Linux user...)

          1. ThatOne Silver badge

            Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

            > if that was the case, the Windows Phone would not have been a flop...

            Why? Which "that" are you referring to?

            Concerning Windows Phone, the main/only problem was apparently "too little, too late": Apple and Google had already split the market and fortified their positions when Microsoft woke up. It would had taken some extraordinary compelling feature to allow Microsoft to enter the market at that time, simply "good enough" wasn't it.

          2. Zimmer

            (and I really want it back! And that's from a Linux user...)

            ...then get Launcher 10 for your Android handset and turn it into a Windows phone lookalike... that's what I did..

            (another Linux user...)

      2. Someone Else Silver badge

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        The thing is that the developers could quite easily put their "new, improved" interface as the default; and then allow everybody else disagreeing that using a mobile phone interface designed for a 8" screen on a pair of 24" screens is an improvement could perhaps select "classic" from a menu and just use something akin to the interface that looks and feels familiar to people who used NT4, 95, 98, ME, 2k, XP and Win7.

        Oh, no, that would never do. Because, you see, the "telemetry" slurped from all the many millions of poor sods using Windows Windows users would unambiguously tell the little darlings who came up with this tripe that they don't know everything, that they're not always right, and their opus dei has been REJECTED! The carnage from their heads exploding would be horrendous.

        1. ThatOne Silver badge

          Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

          > the "telemetry"

          The telemetry only serves to justify the management's decisions. Statistically it's totally unrelated to real world use and does not reflect it in any way, if only because many users (especially corporate and power users) are missing from the results.

          So, the only point of it, except catching bugs some QA would had prevented, is to give an unquestionable justification for your marketing decisions: A more technical version of the old "by popular request we have..." (increased our prices, removed features, etc.).

    4. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

      not in my house either. No choice, it doesn't support 7th Gen i7. Or the other employer provided Elitebook G6, So forget it.

      1. HenryCrun

        Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

        Doesn't support the Intel N4200 on my ultra-thin thing, but they let the N4000 get past because someone complained. The logic about which CPU is accepted is seriously flawed.

        When W10 finally dies, assuming that they are still going, my AMD FX boxes are going to be Unix only and the Windows partitions reformatted.

    5. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: "design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start"

      young whippersnappers continually glued to their mobile phones

      Otherwise known as "4 inchers" i.e. they see EVERYTHING through a 4 inch phone screen.

      * always viewing in that horribly stretched portrait mode that looks like viewing through a keyhole

      * sit in public texting other people that are sitting within CONVERSATION distance

      * nearly always fondling and caressing the screen - could NOT go 24 hours without the cell phone.

      * permanent crick in neck

      * need to have phone ON (and active conversations) while driving

      * anything happens, the phone camera comes out (in portrait mode of course) and it gets uploaded to some bandwidth-wasting social media crap pile

      etc. - and they APPARENTLY ignore the last 40+ years of computing history (since punch cards, and Xerox PARC) in which the keyboard+mouse input and 3D skeuomorphic overlapping window display was shown to be superior. "It must CHANGE, because OUR TURN NOW!"

      yeah pretty nauseating.

  6. Uncle Ron

    No Hope ?

    I have seen *nothing* in any of the coverage of this ho-hum Windows release (11) that talks about SECURITY. If I believed for a nano-second that it would place even a *dent* in the vulnerability of every Windows computer on the planet--viruses, malware, hacks, leaks, ransom-ware, identity-theft, etc.,--I might be interested. But *nothing*. Evil-doers all over the world will take said nano-second to get around TPM and whatever else is in this new spaghetti code. And I'm not at all interested in spinning up and maintaining virtual machines in order to run Windows 11. Forget it. The only beneficiaries of this HW BS are the HW manufacturers. New PC's will be required for ~50% of EVERYBODY. No Thanks. When support for 10 ends, it's Linux for me. Goodbye MS BS.

    1. MrTuK

      Re: No Hope ?

      If this is such good security option why hasn't Linux requested it to improve your security. Maybe it would be better to improve the OS without trying to force Secure Boot and TPM 2.0 and a Minimum Intel and AMD CPU to run it or better still just run Linux - Maybe REDHAT or Fedora as these are both IBM. But most Linux Distro's can be hardened you just need to find out what you need to do.

      1. bryces666

        Re: No Hope ?

        Maybe the new security is just too make it even harder to get dual boot working and/or get linux installed at all?

    2. J27

      Re: No Hope ?

      Just use Linux now then.

    3. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: I have seen *nothing* in any of the coverage that talks about SECURITY

      So you didn't get to the first section of the article, the bit under: What are the new security features?

      Despite not reading the article you're still livid?

      Oh, an article about a new release of Windows? I can't wait for the balanced and thoughtful comments of the regtards....

    4. no user left unlocked

      Re: No Hope ?

      Its more security sure, is it better security? maybe?

      I'd need to dig in and look at what attack surfaces it purports to close and what new ones it opens but with minimal Windows exposure these days its thankfully not my problem.

      To be honest my first impression was that this would help them lock down the DRM chain more closely so more benefits to rights holders than the actual user.

    5. Plest Silver badge

      Re: No Hope ?

      What's the bloody point in having any security in Windows? The first time average Joe gets on it, they'll log straight into "Faceslap" and broadcast half their bloody life story every day!

  7. LenG

    Windows 11 brings more into the modern UI but it remains a hybrid.

    This is supposed to be a benefit? I very much prefer the old look & feel of windows ... Win2000 would suit me.

    Does anyone know if Classic Start Menu runs on this abberation?

    1. Fred Daggy Silver badge

      Re: Windows 11 brings more into the modern UI but it remains a hybrid.

      Alas that I only have one upvote to give.

      Windows 2000 was the best Windows shell. It's nearly joyful in its simplicity. Recently made an installation in a VM - because of Zoom fatigue and it was either that or sleep. Now scratching a programming itch in that environment.

      Under the hood, Windows 8.1 wasn't too bad - shame about the program list. At least they didn't touch Windows Explorer. Win 8.1 certainly has that "just runs" factor.

      There was a reason that a certain J. Clarkson used to describe in very positive terms cars that had an "eager engine". Windows 10 and (from what I am hearing) Windows 11 don't.

    2. TRT Silver badge

      Re: Windows 11 brings more into the modern UI but it remains a hybrid.

      Aberration or abhorrence?

      1. TRT Silver badge

        Re: Windows 11 brings more into the modern UI but it remains a hybrid.

        Or abomination for that matter.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: Windows 11 brings more into the modern UI but it remains a hybrid.

      Does anyone know if Classic Start Menu runs on this abberation ABOMINATION

      Fixed. you're welcome. And, I would expect classic start menu replacements to work, at least for now, because (apparently) Win-10-nic compatibility was part of the "Windows II" spec. Until "they" break it on purpose (so you do not bypass the ads)

      (so is the '11' actually 1.1 or the roman numeral 2 ? Or BOTH?)

  8. Samsara

    By any miracle, does the file explorer now show how big a folder is in list view, without having 'get info' (or whatever the windows command is) on it?

    In Windows 10, files display their size, but folders are don't.

    It sound like a very minor gripe, but coming from a Mac where you can see at a glance where a folder is 500gb or 50k in size, it gets pretty annoying when you are dealing with lists of folders all day containing audio/video.

    1. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

      Ditto. I can offer a very weak sorta workaround : if you hover over a folder, a tooltip appears with the folder size. Except when it doesn't.

      1. Someone Else Silver badge

        The best I can get to is right clicking on a directory ("folder") and click "properties" on the context menu. After some thrashing around (proportional in some way to the amount of stuff in that "folder"), you get the size.

        Never did experience the "hover-over" behavior you describe....

    2. ecofeco Silver badge

      I have never understood this. Seems so simple, yet somehow. MS cannot grasp it.

    3. Dog Eatdog


      There's a free program called "foldersize" which fixes this.

    4. Alan Hope

      This is the sort of thing they would pick up almost immediately if they ran "usability labs".

  9. vistisen

    I've been using the beta on a test machine and hate almost every design difference involving the taskbar and start Menu. Don't get me started on the filtering of right click menus. They have obviously been using my diagnostics data to make sure that all the choices I user regularly are removed from the main list, so that I have to click twice as often to find them! Luckily my main computer's motherboard is too old to support the retail version, so I'll be stuck on Windows 10. what a shame!

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  10. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

    No right-click copy? No sweat if keyboard shortcuts still exist

    As long as CTRL-C (and partner CTRL-V) work, and F2 to rename (and F5 to refresh), then I'm sorted. My left hand on the keyboard is faster than my right hand with the mouse (actually, trackball, but I've done that rant before).

    Ditto with ALT-TAB; so much faster than any taskbar/dock (used that effectively on Macs, too). And ALT-ENTER for those Properties popups.

    (But... if the keyboard shortcuts are removed, my first reaction would be to blame this younger generation of developers for not caring about keyboards, but it seems they do with all the mechanical switch brouhaha. Given that, a time-saving shortcut (or ten) should be right up their alley -- let the fingers fly!)

    1. JimboSmith Silver badge

      Re: No right-click copy? No sweat if keyboard shortcuts still exist

      No right-click copy?

      It's there (I'm told*), but you have to use the icons at the top of the right click menu.

      *I use Linux instead.

    2. ThatOne Silver badge

      Re: No right-click copy? No sweat if keyboard shortcuts still exist

      > not caring about keyboards

      Obviously not: Smartphones don't have keyboards!

      That's why you now have to swipe on a computer instead of pressing some keys...

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: No right-click copy? No sweat if keyboard shortcuts still exist

        and I thought that if you swipe something you could go to jail...

        1. RuffianXion

          Re: No right-click copy? No sweat if keyboard shortcuts still exist

          Only if it's the government you're swiping from...

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows gets an Arc theme. I wish they had stretched their imagination a bit and offered a tiling windows option like i3 which might have appealed to developers fed up with contrastless buttons and 1px wide borders requiring a surgeons hands to resize. WSL is the only upgrade buried under this lipsticked pig. It's a solid pass for me, and as for buying components to satisfy the system requirements; I'll be hoping they extend Windows 10 support long enough for them to become affordable.

  12. Youngone Silver badge

    New version of Windows? Yay!

    Windows 11 looks better than Windows 10...

    I'm not sure I agree with that, I think it looks worse, but I've been doing this for long enough that I remember how poor every new version of Windows is.

    Round about Service Pack 3 (or whatever the modern equivalent is) they'll get it right. In the meantime I suppose I'll learn how to work around all the inconveniences like I always do.

    1. J27

      Re: New version of Windows? Yay!

      That would be the 1H 2023 release because they're on a 6 month cycle.

    2. georgezilla

      Re: New version of Windows? Yay!

      But Windows 10 will be the last version ever.

      Ummm .......


      Not so much.

  13. Old Used Programmer

    One convenience wanted....

    If they're making things "easier" there an "easy"--and *complete*--way to disable all telemetry?

    (Yeah...I know. That's something they want to make impossible.)

    1. MrTuK

      Re: One convenience wanted....

      Crying with laughter, thats their bread and butter aswell as forcing Edge and the Bing as search engine !

      1. HenryCrun

        Re: One convenience wanted....

        My firewall blocks and will continue to do so as long as possible. Just have a look at what that aberration Edge sends to HQ without asking.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: One convenience wanted....

      Yes, don't run Windows.

    3. georgezilla

      Re: One convenience wanted....

      " ... is there an "easy"--and *complete*--way to disable all telemetry? ... "


      Stop using Windows.

  14. Kev99 Silver badge

    Cheap knock-off of macOS? It's not even that good.

    Looks better than windows10? PUH-LEEZ! The start menu stinx. To get to any apps you need a microscope to see the All Apps link and then only if you also have x-ray vision.

    Rounded corners on windows? Talk about putting lipstick on a pig.

    Additional security? TPM 2 has already been hacked, cracked, and smacked. Just don't open every email or click on every link. And also, run a decent security package like Norton, which I've used since v5 and have never had any security issues. Well, except for when my 6 year old daughter clicked on a link in AOL whick locked us out. (The doctor was able to reattach her fingers.)

    Copying mac since win1? Try GEM OS from 1986.

    Made easy things somewhat easier and difficult things more difficult? To former, you're kidding, right. To the latter, that's an understatement.

    Glued to their phones? Are you sure they even know what a real computer is? I think microsofts script kiddies would be hard pressed to know how to use a VTeck Tote & Go.

    Yeah, I got spoiled by QEMM286,a nd Software Carousel. And Quattro Pro 4, and pfs:Professional Write. and other software written by coders who were actual users.

    1. Totally not a Cylon

      Have an upvote for GEM...

    2. Plest Silver badge

      GEM had to be simple by design as there weren't the resources, so you had to code very tightly.

      Today's whippersnapper, 64GB PC devs with 16GB graphics cards and 48" monitors should be forced code on Atari 2600 for 6 months to learn how to conserve every last bit of memory and CPU cycle. When you're writing code that has to work with the TV's scan rate cycle, that's bare-knuckle coding at the coalface not 17 layers down 6 frameworks!

  15. StiffDrink

    UI vulnerability

    Not to mention 98% of security bugs are in the UI. New UI, new flaws and hacks to be learned. The joy.

  16. Lorribot

    Widgets, Schmidgets

    Widgets took a whole 10 seconds to annoy me sufficiently to start looking for a way to permentnently remove the whole thing from my PC.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Widgets, Schmidgets

      Just surprised MS didn't include a widget that showed a portrait photo of Panos Panay to remind us all of the 'creator' at work, about as useful as any of the widgets included.

  17. W.S.Gosset Silver badge


    > Research showed people wanted a cleaner and simpler Start

    "So we converted half of it (and their screen) to Ads, and from the other half we removed the applications, replacing that horrible list with a nice, clean, simple commandline textbox. Now they can just cleanly and simply type in program names that they know about and have memorised. Just like programmers do on PDP11s, and with the same Modern filename completion. Consistency."

  18. martinusher Silver badge

    GUIs are not operating systems

    I know that Microsoft -- and others -- like to pretend that their rendering engines and GUIs are important operating system features but they're not. A GUI is just a fancy application launcher. For many of us once our application is launched then that's where we spend most of our time.

    For me improvements to the operating system would be to use fewer resources, updates that don't have to force system restarts and drivers that work and can be updated without restarting the system. Having USB that lives up to the promise of USB would be nice as well -- I know that most Reg readers won't use multiple serial ports but if they're a developer they will because they'll have all sorts of things like debuggers plugged into the things. Microsoft has never got the hang of USB, it still associates an instance of a driver with a physical socket so you can't move things around without getting driver conflicts. Another feature that they need to get away from is drive letters and backslash path separators (Although there might be signs of "improvement" in the latest and greatest Win10 -- they seem to have automatically assigned drive letters to locally pathed directories, all the better to confuse users.)(I just wish they'd fix things instead of tinkering with them making incremental improvements that really don't add to the system's functionality.)

    I'm now retired so I'm freed from the tyranny of "its company policy". I honestly don't know how anyone gets any work done these days. ("Not my problem")

    1. HenryCrun

      Re: GUIs are not operating systems

      I bet that MS haven't fixed the 256 character limit to fully qualified file names that causes Visual Studio to blow-up. Because mucking about with drive letters is so more important etc?

  19. TheBadja

    No reason to upgrade

    I haven't seen a single compelling reason to upgrade. Then again, I hung onto XP as long as I could and then upgraded to 8.1. I only upgraded to Windows 10 when I bought a new main machine with it installed, and liked it enough to upgrade my laptop and spare machine.

    Windows 11 looks like Vista or Windows 8 to me - a version to avoid as long as possible.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: No reason to upgrade

      I stayed with XP until my genuine install disk could no longer install on my upgraded hardware.

      That's when I chose to go to 7, and I'm staying there as long as I can.

  20. Blackjack Silver badge

    "Research showed people wanted a cleaner and simpler Start, and that since so many people have smartphones, design paradigms from those devices could successfully carry over into a new Start – being able to pan different pages with touch, for instance."

    Change phones for tablets and is almost the same freaking argument they used for Windows 8.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Goes to prove they never learn.

      (Why should they anyway: It's not like they are facing any serious competition.)

      1. Blackjack Silver badge

        Only because something free like most Linux distros is not competition.

  21. georgezilla

    Not quite business as usual for Microsoft

    Ummmmm ..................


    Sounds like the usual Microsoft to me.

    30+ years of Microsoft history says otherwise.

  22. pavel.petrman

    Re usability mis-steps

    The whole Windows 10 is one huge usability misstep. If Windows 11 is comparably worse, it's going to be a nightmare for those of us who are wed to Windows in our jobs and have not yet mastered PowerShell for all system management tasks, even the most basic ones.

    Does anyone remember those jokes about the airplane seats and a screwdriver? I've been quite happy with default-set KDE Plasma recently. Oh the irony, today one get everything one needs pre-installed on a Linux desktop whereas on Windows one has to install a number of shell extensions and tweaks to make the UI at least decently workable (Launchy, PowerToys, Open Shell and so on and on).

  23. Winkypop Silver badge

    Legs 11


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Legs 11

      11 - Just imagine two dominos, ready to topple themselves. Windows 11 is going do it all by itself, unless things change at the top.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They're still gently caressing the dog

    Seriously, they need to go back to Windows 7 UI, ditch the telemetry and weird hardware requirements.

    8, 8.1, and all iterations of 10 have been a failure in my eyes. 11 is just another pile of fresh leavings.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: They're still gently caressing the dog

      They need to.

      They won't, though.

  25. Admiral Grace Hopper

    This makes me very happy indeed

    I am delighted beyond my power to tell that I am no longer responsible for supporting a 100+ fleet of virtualised Windows desktops used by cranky developers. I'm sorry for the guy into whose lap I tossed them before running away, laughing. I didn't lie to him about his chances, but he did have my sympathies.

  26. Filippo Silver badge

    "A recommended section occupies about half the initial Start window and cannot be removed."

    "Research showed people wanted a cleaner and simpler Start"

    There's a pretty big contradiction there.

    1. ThatOne Silver badge

      > There's a pretty big contradiction there.

      Not that big actually. An even cleaner and simpler Start will soon only display ads. Can't get any more "clean and simple" than that, especially if the victim user can't do anything about it...

      Windows is not about you, you egocentric people, it's about Microsoft making a quick buck.

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        it's about Microsoft making a lot of quick bucks.

        FTFY ;)

  27. Big_Boomer

    My 6 year old i7-4790 is not supported for use with Win11. If MS think I'm going to buy a new PC so I can get Win11 then they are delusional. I'm sure that over time they will try (again) to force their customers onto Win11 by no longer providing security upgrades for Win10 and by then I may consider buying a new PC, but I may just abandon Windows completely if the current system hardware is still adequate for my needs.

    Most issues with Win10 are fixable apart from the schizophrenic system settings pages (I still struggle to find what I want) but MS seem to be dead set on pissing off their existing users with endless poorly thought out interface changes so I don't have much hope that Win11 will fix any of that.

    1. -v(o.o)v-

      Indeed. I had to configure Windows 10 on a new laptop.

      Settings in Control Panel were easy to find and everything was done quickly.

      The Settings app however... it took forever, mainly because to find any needed setting I needed to go through all of the setting "groups", scroll around the pages filled with empty space.

      Microsoft can f o a d since I'm forced to use this waster of time.

  28. James Anderson

    Windows 11 will improve over time

    NOT if the windows 10 experience is anything to go by.

    Every update manages to breaks something.

    Two nifty thumb sized PCs got totally borked as each “fix” required more and more resources.

    Every update put the useless Edge browser back on the menu.

    Carefully crafted permissions were set back to default.

    Devices which worked for years were bricked by driver updates.

    Leave a machine switched of for a few weeks and it will immediately go into an update frenzy lasting hours. And be unusable for anther hour or so as the search options were reset to default and a full system scan gets kicked of.

    1. fung0

      Re: Windows 11 will improve over time

      I've been saying it for years: automatic updates are a HORRIBLE idea. Like allowing Dr. Nick Riviera to do 'proactive' surgery on your brain. Over and over again.

      If it's not broken... turn OFF updates!!

  29. Filippo Silver badge


    So far, "modern" to me mostly means:

    1) Enormous amounts of margin and padding, resulting in a crapload of white space everywhere. Pick any Win10 modern config page; over half is blank. If you have five radio buttons, you need to scroll to get at the fifth. My screen has easily twice the area of the one on which I used to run Windows 7 and four times the pixels - and yet, when I open a system configuration page, it somehow manages to show me less information.

    2) Clickable elements never have a border, and sometimes don't even have a distinct background until you hover on them. If I open a system configuration page, unless I'm already familiar with it, I have no idea of what I can interact with until I move the cursor on everything.

    There are other problems, but I'm happy to be lenient and classify them as bugs or things that need polishing. Those two, however, are fundamental design decisions, and they are terrible. They make the UI a lot harder to use, requiring more scrolls, more clicks, more typing in search boxes, more of everything that I've been taught in GUI design to avoid - for absolutely no good reason. The only thing I can say for them is that I'm already putting up with them in Win10, so it's not like Win11 will make my life that much worse.

    1. Piro Silver badge

      Re: "Modern"

      "I'm already putting up with them in Win10, so it's not like Win11 will make my life that much worse."

      Oh no, it can get a lot worse, and it has. Basic functionality like dragging and dropping to the taskbar to open a file in an application doesn't work. You can't "ungroup" taskbar items (horrible feature that was crap in XP, and has been crap ever since), just to name a couple of things that will drive me mad.

    2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: more of everything that I've been taught in GUI design to avoid


      Someone should take every single Borkzilla UI developer and drag them, forcibly, to an underground dungeon where proper UI rules get whipped into them.

      Back in the late 90s, I was given a copy of a Microsoft report on proper menu management. I have lost that document since and I deeply regret that, but reading that report was, at the time, an enlightening experience. It said logical things, as in : if you have more than 3 layers of menu, you need to rethink your menu structure. If you are coding for an international audience, you need to pay attention to the colors you use, since they can have different meanings on different continents. Etc.

      Everything UI I design in my applications today is still based on that report. The one that I lost.

      Apparently, Borkzilla has lost it as well.

      1. J.G.Harston Silver badge

        Re: more of everything that I've been taught in GUI design to avoid

        Things like: don't use colour as your sole signifier of information. That yellowy-green is going to be indistiunishable from that greeny-yellow and will confer no information unless it's being used as a background highlight to the actual information.

    3. rmullen0

      Re: "Modern"

      "for absolutely no good reason" describes every Windows upgrade for the past 20 years. I finally thought the UI was looking better than average, or at least better that the litany of previous train wreck releases. However, I don't like the cloud tie ins in Windows 10 and I'm assuming it's worse still in 11. I'll be retiring in probably another 10 years. Most likely, I'll switch to Linux before Windows 10 support is dropped. I see no go reason to stick with them and their idiotic and heavy handed tactics any longer. I have a lot of perfectly good hardware and I'm not going to throw it out because Microsoft says I have to in order to make money for them and the PC makers.

    4. Someone Else Silver badge

      Re: "Modern"

      1) Enormous amounts of margin and padding, resulting in a crapload of white space everywhere. Pick any Win10 modern config page; over half is blank. If you have five radio buttons, you need to scroll to get at the fifth. My screen has easily twice the area of the one on which I used to run Windows 7 and four times the pixels - and yet, when I open a system configuration page, it somehow manages to show me less information.

      Well, that's because the ADHD-addled "marketing genius" Millennials (and up-n-coming Gen Z'ers) simply can't handle the information density that a normal person could. When confronted with that, they go catatonic, which the Micros~1 manager class considers to be "unproductive".

  30. NerryTutkins

    visual redesign

    This is just going round in circles. They do everything glassy in Vista, tell you its fresh and modern.

    Then they get bored of that, now "flat" is best, everything goes flat and texty without icons. Then the icons start to creep back in, and a bit of shadow too.

    Then now we have a new glassy look.

    Each change, we're told, makes things easier and more comfortable to use.

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: visual redesign

      BUT... by putting the start button in the middle of the dashboard it doesn't matter if you're in a left or right hand drive country.

  31. Sirius Lee

    So let me get this right. Microsoft's product managers must only plan the features of a version, one that is presumably intended to last a decade, that run on equipment available today. In three years time, when the current fleet of machines is replaced by kit that does have the required features these comments will be irrelevant and the machines more secure.

    This is the same huffing and puffing that met the release of Windows 10. According to Microsoft Windows 10 is now on 1.3 billion devices. Back them, august sites like The Register were ridiculing that the take up then was not exactly like Microsoft predicted. But forecasting the future was not the point. Getting a new OS that would competently run on devices people could afford was.

    Seems that the old play book has been dusted off for a new version. Goof luck with that

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      So let me get this right. Microsoft's product managers must only plan the features of a version, one that is presumably intended to last a decade, that run on equipment available today.

      If you expect us to use it; yes.

      Ok; Win7's extended support ended on January the 14th of last year. If you were well funded then you've met that deadline and have an estate of new state of the art computers, none of which will be able to run Win11. If you weren't well funded then you probably still have computers with processors as old as Core 2 Duo's that originally came with Win7 running Win10, which again definitely won't.

      The actual usable life of a modern computer is about 12 years; years 13+ tend to start running into lots of problems with hardware slowing down as components start expiring. You can though easily get 10 years use out of a computer; I still have old Core 2 Duo boxes in my desktop estate. (albeit they have grown multi monitor cards, SSD's and are maxed out with memory) these boxes still work perfectly fine for office use.

      Virtually nobody does a 3 year replacement cycle; even government departments tend to go for the 5 year extended warranty these days as they are sensitive about news stories about them wasting taxpayers money. Also; throwing out perfectly good hardware through deliberately planned obsolescence is getting increasingly objectionable given the environmental costs of recycling IT equipment.

      Therefore if your on a more or less mainstream 5 year replacement cycle then the next hardware refresh isn't going to be relativity complete for about 5 years; aiming for October 14th, 2025 as that's when Win10 EOL hits. So yes, if you want people to upgrade to a new OS immediately then the hardware that's out there now in desktop estates now needs to be able to run it if you expect it to be used because otherwise it's not getting rolled out for quite a few years.

      Also, it being "people ready" would also be a good start; it's a bit absurd that a home user could be less impacted by switching to Linux with the Redmond theme; scroll down for screenshots than switching from a previous version of Windows.

      1. Cliffwilliams44 Silver badge

        Agree on the hardware, we have TPM across out estate because we implemented BitLocker but that's not the point. We had the means and funding to do that, as we are a big multi-national. A lot of other companies do not. TPM is not some security "holy grail".

        There is also a problem with drastic UI changes in an enterprise. I always hearken back to an incident in my younger days in the mid 90s. I worked for a computer dealer that sold both Apple and IBM compatible PCs. One of our customers was a big Advertising firm. As you might guess the art/creative departments were all Macs. The business, finance and all the PAs were on PCs. The creative director convinced management that Macs would greatly increase productivity so we deployed Mac all over the company.

        I can tell you, when I installed Macs for those Personal Assistants who were all Work Perfect jockies they wanted to string me up by my balls! "What is this mouse thing, I can't find how to do thing, I just want my Word Perfect back!"

        1. fung0

          This is a good point. I've long (!) maintained that a time-traveling Mac user from 1984 would feel perfectly comfortable with the latest Mac. It might take time to get used to the new stuff, but the basic UI remains consistent. (Consistently bad, IMHO... the most 'modal' UI ever. But consistent.)

      2. HenryCrun

        Ho-ho I'll just blow the dust off of my working 8088 IBM clone. 30MB HDD, CGA graphics, 5.25 FDD, 2.2MB RAM (yes a memory expansion card) and DR-DOS 7. As the old thing doesn't connect to any network the airgap has kept it safe since 1986 :-)

    2. A.P. Veening Silver badge

      Goof luck with that

      Lovely typo (or was it intended? In which case chapeau.)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You, Sir, are an....

      It is on a billion devices because we have no choice, you cretin.

      The huffing is because it's all we can do, you cretin.

  32. jollyboyspecial

    "One reason for the new release is to improve security and reliability – though this has also provoked a storm of protest since it depends in part on recent hardware, causing the majority of PCs in use to be incompatible."

    I really don't have a problem with that. A line has to be drawn somewhere. Otherwise there would be people all over the world wanting Windows 10 (slowly) on 386SX PCs.

    1. Piro Silver badge

      The line has to be drawn somewhere, exactly.

      I think it should simply be drawn at the dawn of the AMD64 era. It's almost what Windows 10 does - it requires instructions that came about in about 2003, but there is a 32-bit version of Windows 10.

      If Windows 11 had the same requirement but was 64-bit only, I think that would be reasonable.

      If they wanted to optimise further, and restrict it to modern platforms that won't give a bad experience, I reckon SSE 4.1 support would be a good baseline to aim for, which shouldn't piss too many off or generate a bunch of e-waste.

  33. J.G.Harston Silver badge

    "pressure from OEM partners to encourage a hardware refresh"

    We've already done a hardware refresh as part of our Windows 10 rollout. Now they want us to throw all that away and spend more money on hardware, instead of on treating patients and stuff.

  34. breakfast Silver badge

    Looks suspiciously like they've gone for Star Trek alignment

    When 8 came out, it began to look as though MS operated on a reverse-Star-Trek philosophy of odd-numbers good, even numbers bad for OS releases, but of course Windows 10 jumped a version number because so much software did a regex check for a 9 anywhere in the version and assumed it meant 95 so it sounds like they've flipped that and achieved full alignment.

    1. ThatOne Silver badge

      Re: Looks suspiciously like they've gone for Star Trek alignment

      > Looks suspiciously like they've gone for Star Trek alignment

      You say that because of the warp factor?

  35. Wolfclaw

    When a 1 year old top end Dell business laptop that was still sold a few months ago with TPM2 is not compatible due to it's processor, you know that this is a scam to screw customers by OEMs and Microsoft, to enforce new hardware sales. So stick with W10 until either the laptop or support expires, or start dipping toes into Linux. Costs of hardware refresh v Linux learning curve and phasing out Microsoft servers and products for some?

  36. Spanners Silver badge

    A new entry point for criminals.

    Ever since Windoze95 came out and hid file extensions, I have kept watching for new features to disable to make it harder for criminals to take control of computers. Power Update seems to be just such a feature.

    Yes, it is not new but installing it by default will make new computers more vulnerable. Also, those crims could have previously done it in VBA but this will be even more deeply embedded in the system.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Poorly Applied

    "In File Explorer, the fat ribbon menu has gone, replaced by a simplified icon bar."

    Except it's not replaced (at least not fully). They've just tried to "wallpaper" over the old File Explorer.

    Go to "Windows Tools" and click any item in the tree on the left. You'll get File Explorer with a ribbon bar and the old right-click menu.

  38. ecofeco Silver badge

    Teams? Powersh...ell? Default install?

    OK, nice to have as default if you need them, but what are their purpose again?

    Teams? Hands down THE least intuitive, useful interface, ever. Well done MS! Zoom thanks you.

    Powersh...ell? (sorry keep wanting to use alternative spelling) the scripting language it appears nobody will ever fully know? And sometimes works? That has embraced the modern proclivity of verbosity over brevity?

    Lovely. Carry on. /s

    1. Cliffwilliams44 Silver badge

      Re: Teams? Powersh...ell? Default install?

      Powershell is one of the best things MS has done in years. It is relatively easy to understand and use. You just need to learn the modules you need to do your daily work. I get very frustrated with IT people who's job is to support Windows and Microsoft product who treat PowerShell like it was some kind of leper! I tell all the "younglings" in our department, "If you want to advance your career you NEED to learn and embrace PowerShell!"

      One of the biggest thing I saw was replacing the command prompt with Windows Terminal. Unless they have changed it to a native program and not a Microsoft store app then it is useless to an Administrator. You cannot "run as a different user" with the current Windows Terminal and that makes it useless!

      1. HenryCrun

        Re: Teams? Powersh...ell? Default install?

        PowerSmell has all the "faults" of the Unix command line but the commands and options are even more verbose and harder to remember.

        If you can't do runas on cmd then I think you may have missed something.

  39. SodiumChloride


    Do you have to have a MS account to use W11? Seems they want you to log in to use Teams.

    W10 keeps up its insistance I should register with an account.

    I keep telling it to go do one.

  40. Nematode

    Taskbar position options?

    Can you still put the Taskbar up the left side of the screen, to maximise usable vertical space? With today's shallow widescreen displays, esp on laptops, you need it. Or are we forced to use the self-hiding taskbar?

    1. Nematode

      Re: Taskbar position options?

      You just have to work harder.

  41. Omnipresent Bronze badge

    Windows 11 has zero to do with security

    If they were so concerned with security they would not have turned it into another Chrome like system that forces you to put everything you do on the internet. That is why they want to force you into buying another computer... it's an absolute resource HOG. Get me off your servers micro$!

    1. rmullen0

      Re: Windows 11 has zero to do with security

      Agreed. If people were concerned about security, they wouldn't be putting all their files in the cloud.

  42. TRT Silver badge

    People are a problem...

    "if you make things optional, people don't turn them on … "

    Ah! So that explains their whole approach to metrics in Windows 10... gotcha now... explains a lot. Light bulbs, for example.

  43. Dave 15


    To be honest after windows 10 it would take a lot to get me back to Microsoft from Linux. Linux isn't wonderful, it has its issues,but they are much less than the issues with windows

  44. aerogems Silver badge

    A Mixed Bag

    I, for one, appreciate the new emphasis on search. It took me a while to unlearn the old method and start using the new one, but it's been worth the effort. I don't have to maintain some complicated hierarchy of directories, I can just dump everything in one place and then search for whatever I want. I was never a big fan of the "flat" UI the last time it came around in the early 2000s with Office 2000. I think Vista was probably the pinnacle as far as UI aesthetics go. I get they started toning it down because they wanted to try to shove Win8 onto lower end devices which may not be able to handle it, but these days, even a 3-4 year old cell phone should have more than enough GPU power to handle Vista level bling.

    I know it's the popular thing to bitch about how new versions of Windows leave certain older hardware behind, but it makes a lot of sense if you view it from the perspective of where things will be 2, 3, even 5 or 10-years down the road. At that point, most people will be running a computer that meets all the requirements and then some. Just like people stopped complaining about XP after around SP2 because the hardware and software had largely caught up, and then people stopped complaining about Vista once IGPs started being able to handle the new GUI, this too will pass and Microsoft knows it.

  45. Nightkiller

    "what we put into 11 is [that] we are going to secure you by default."

    Finally. After first promising "secure by default" in XP.

    1. Piro Silver badge

      Ah, not so much. We know that pretty much everyone ran as administrator on XP, and in the first release there was only a primitive firewall that wasn't even enabled by default. It took SP2 to beef up and enable the firewall by default.

  46. rmullen0

    4 years to pick your favorite Linux

    Luckily, there is 4 years to pick your favorite Linux before Windows 10 support is dropped.

  47. Imhotep

    Dictionary Dartboard

    No opinion on the OS, but do the people that write this sort of thing actually understand English?

    "a design which is human" and "embrace a softer geometry and more modern metaphors."

  48. IceC0ld

    MS 11 = ?

    and again, not ONE sign of a good old fashioned TITSUP, so let me make the thread better :o)

    T HIS

    I s

    T he

    S ystem

    U sers

    P refer

    I, for one, do not go along with the every other release a dud, no matter HOW close the curve lies to the apparent truth, but again, I, for one, was happy with W10, no, seriously, stop tittering at the back, it worked, it is basically as easy to get around from a 2nd 3rd line perspective as everything since 2k / XP and I also believed the bollox given out that MS would never release a new OS, just release 'upgrades' as and when needed / necessary

    not sure if I will get W11 just yet, but if it's available as a FREE 'upgrade' may well be enticed in :o)

  49. pip25

    "A recommended section occupies about half the initial Start window and cannot be removed."

    So Windows is officially adware now...? That's it, to hell with this crap. >_>

  50. John_3_16

    Don't need it, don't want it...

    Win7 updated till it is not. Linux, which accomplishes same things with FAR fewer headaches. And my laptop hardware. Pleases me completely with a few updates like battery, max memory mods & doubled SSD disk. Everything I want to do is done.

    Maybe something new in 2-3 years. Maybe a deal from somewhere. Will back it up, wipe it & install only what I want on it. In 2-3 years. Maybe. ;>)

  51. MJI Silver badge

    Sounds crap

    Icon labels removed, how I am supposed to know what does what?

    I do have O level English lang. So can read.

    Removal of copy, now that is shit!.

    I do know about crtl CV but when you select one with mouse, easy to to RC Copy then move to your other file manager and click paste.

    But then I still create directories using MD

  52. Adrian 4


    In an interview with CRN, Weston said that "if you make things optional, people don't turn them on … what we put into 11 is [that] we are going to secure you by default."

    Isn't forcing security features why Vista was so despised ?

    When will they learn to work with people instead of against them ?

  53. CFtheNonPartisan

    Some think it looks like MacOS, I think it reeks of Android's management scheme.

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