Windows 11 launches with redesigned start menu

Windows 11 has some significant design changes, along with some alterations on how the system works under the hood.

By default, the Start menu is centred on screen, along with icons in the taskbar. When clicked on, the Start button opens a menu of frequently used apps. In some ways, it mimics the appearance of a smartphone app menu or launcher. Microsoft has also dropped the “tiles” which were present on Windows 10’s start menu.

When Windows 10 came out, Microsoft declared it would be the “last version” of the system. That has obviously changed.

Across the operating system, the design favours rounded corners, and has simplified most menus and folder views. And there are new, improved options for arranging windows and “snapping” them into grids.

Widgets, a major selling point of 2007’s Windows Vista, also make a comeback - but instead of “floating” on the screen where the user puts them, they live in a sidebar on the left, and are also linked to Microsoft services.

Some changes go deeper than the interface and design.

System integrations for Microsoft Teams - replacing Skype - and the Xbox app both feature heavily in Microsoft’s advertising.

The Microsoft Store - the Windows version of an app store - has been completely redesigned and will allow third-party apps to sell inside it, without taking a substantial cut.

And one new feature which raised eyebrows in the technology world was that Windows 11 would run Android smartphone apps through the Amazon app store.

Early adopters have reported that the in-built search function of the new version is significantly faster on most devices - but also that it favours Microsoft’s own services, Bing and the Edge browser, when delivering web results.

For gamers, Microsoft promises that its new drive technology - Direct Storage - will lead to much better loading times in games by allowing a graphics card to access storage drives without going through the central processor.

But that feature, like some others, needs newer hardware to work.

As a result, not every computer will see all the potential advantages to upgrading - and some machines may not be able to upgrade at all.

The minimum requirements include a type of security chip - called a TPM - only installed on modern computers.

Windows 10 will continue to be supported and receive security updates until October 2025.

Well, I’m not rushing to install it … :069:


Always wiser to wait a few months whilst bugs are discovered and patched.
Many people will find that their PC’s are not compatible because Windows requires TPM.2 and secure boot. There are work arounds I believe and most modern PC’s this can be enabled viia the BIOS settings.

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I use a Mac … I hate Windows

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Having tried both, I now use a Chromebook.

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Could somebody tell me why they keep changing the operating systems please?
Personally I was happiest with Windows XP.

I had a really good photo editing programme that I loved & when WindowsXP changes to Vista it was not compatible with my photo editing programme anymore.

That was a sad day for me. :cry:


Carol…its a misguided attempt to “improve” things. Much like the laundry adverts “newer, better, shinier version” They can’t leave things alone…but also due to technology being upgraded, many of the older systems can’t work anymore. That’s how I understand it, anyway… :frowning:

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The real scary thing about this is costs to large organizations like the NHS which does not have a particular good record when it comes to IT and changing operating systems is not always feasible.


It’s how they make their money, Carol!

A bit like buying cars, clothes, mobile phones, everything…!

Tart it up a bit and everyone needs to buy it!

Millions of PCs, Laptops, etc., are about to be purchased, to fit the new specs.

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I hadn’t thought of it that way… :+1:

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When the NHS got hit by Ransomware, it was suggested that they hadn’t been applying even the free updates - some of which would be about protecting the system against Ransomware!

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A lot of validated systems are too difficult to change anyway as they are legacy systems and not forward compatible. I spend about 40% of my job defining plans for replacing, renewing and changing them in the pharmaceutical industry. It’s a living nightmare day in and day out.

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Doh! I would have thought they would have a dedicated tech team for that kind of thing Ted? The NHS isn’t exactly a small company…

Unfortunately this is both true and in a lot of cases unnecessary as lots of folk will get a popup telling them that Wndows 11 is not compatible when a small tweak in the BIOS will usually sort it.
But I appreciate most will not know how to access a PC’s BIOS or what setting to change.

Is it easy? I mean, could you tell us here, just in case people want to refer to it?

Nope they contract it all out and get ripped off in the process, there is so much red tape involved in shopping anything to the NHS and if you get a contract it becomes a license to print money n a lot of cases.
A consultant was telling me it cost 500 quid to get a couple of shelves put up.
A company charged 200 quid to oil a trollies squeaky wheel.

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Unfortunately there is not a single solution as there are so many brands of motherboard but getting into BIOS is simple usually tapping a key, quite often the Delete key as soon as you hit the power button, this will take you into the BIOS but from there it gets a bit more tricky for the reason I mentioned.

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Oh ok, thanks anyway. Fingers crossed it will go smoothly for everyone then…

Go to the bottom of this website and download and run the PC Health Check app this will tell you if you can run Windows 11.

If you don’t have the required Processor, you (probably) won’t be able to patch into it.

One way of doing the checks is to look at the Which free guidance -

Windows 11 requirements: check if your computer is compatible - Which?

That takes you through looking in System/settings/About/ where you will see the name, and description, of your current processor - (e.g. mine says Intel Core ™ i5-4590S CPU.)

You can, either, just look up your processor or run the which app on this page (above).

Then Which will tell you what has to be done ready for W11.

It’s also useful to run, and print off, Belarc Advisor (Free) which is 4 pages of what your PC is made up of (Ram, CPU, etc).

Don’t spend any money yet, though.

Requirements change, fixes get written, miracles happen!

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