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Everything you need to know about Windows 11

Microsoft's big operating system upgrade will be available in the holidays this year but there are a few things you should know before installing it

June 28, 2021 / 05:17 PM IST
Microsoft's big operating system upgrade will be available in the holidays this year but there are a few things you should know before installing it

Microsoft's big operating system upgrade will be available in the holidays this year but there are a few things you should know before installing it

Microsoft launched Windows 10 in 2015 which means the operating system has been part of our daily lives for close to six years now. In that time, Microsoft has refined and updated Windows 10 to make it as polished as it can be and will continue to do so until October 14th, 2025 giving it the necessary updates to keep it going till then.

Microsoft's main focus however will be on Windows 11 which will start rolling to Windows Insiders on June 28 and will be available for download to the public in the holidays.

What is Windows 11? 

Windows 11 is the next major update to Microsoft's popular Operating System and as with each new instalment has a ton of new features that give it an edge over Windows 10. The biggest of these changes is the new interface. Microsoft is giving the operating system a facelift with a new centre aligned start menu, a new cleaner design with rounded edges, pastel shading and overall a sleeker interface that is pleasant to look at. If you prefer, you can still move the start menu back to being on the left in the options menu.

Despite the interface overhaul Microsoft has stated that much of Windows 11 is built on the same base as Windows 10 to keep the experience familiar to older users while making improvements that enhance it. One of the major ones is the ability to run Android apps natively within the system, something that could be achieved on Windows 10 but with a few workarounds.

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Microsoft has also given multi-tasking a big upgrade with snap layouts that let you move apps and lock them to specific portion of the screen similar to Windows 10 but expanded now with the ability to set custom loadouts that allow you to quickly set up your workflow and have the operating system remember where placed the apps on screen. Windows 11 will also let you toggle between various desktop layouts similar to Apple's MacOS.

Gaming also gets a boost with Windows 11 with some Xbox specific functionality like Auto HDR and DirectStorage being implemented natively into the OS.

When is Windows 11 releasing to the public? 

There is no specific set date as of now and no price has been revealed. The good news is that existing owners will probably be upgraded to Windows 11 for free but a fresh install may require a purchase.

The bad news is the new system requirements.

What will I need to run Windows 11? 

Let's pull the band aid off first. If you own the first generation of AMD's Ryzen Processors, chances are Windows 11 is not going to support it. On the Intel side of things, Windows 11 will only support 8th Generation or newer Intel Core processors. The second thing you need to be aware of is the Trusted Platform Module 2.0 (TPM).

TPM is security chip on your motherboard that securely generates and stores login information away from prying eyes. If your PC is more than 4 years old, chances are you do not have a motherboard that supports it. To check, you can go into the system BIOS (By pressing DEL or F1 on PC start-up) and look for an option to enable it. You will also need to turn on Secure Boot for Windows 11 to work.

You can also check your motherboard has TPM 2.0 by typing 'tpm.msc' in the search bar next to the start button on Windows 10. Another headache is different motherboard manufacturers refer to TPM by other names such as 'fTPM' or 'IPTT', so you will need to check your motherboard documentation or do a quick google search with your motherboard model to get you the results.

Alternatively, you can download Windows' PC Health Check app from here and click on 'Check Now' if your PC is compatible.
Rohith Bhaskar
first published: Jun 28, 2021 05:17 pm
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