Confessions of a Windows 11 Doubter

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I’ve been irrationally sour on Windows 11 ever since it was leaked then officially announced. I was senselessly angry at Microsoft for “not doing more”, whatever that means. After listening to the last couple of Windows Weekly episodes and reading through Paul’s early impressions, last night I decided to go all in and get back into the Insider’s Program to do some testing. I installed Windows 10 in a VM on my main desktop PC, licensed it with a spare key and then downloaded the Windows 11 bits.

 

In an earlier forum post I called Windows 11 lipstick on a pig, swearing that I’ll ride Windows 10 out then switch to MacOS. Well, gotta say, this is a sexy pig. I’m in lust so far and can’t wait for the final version. To quote others, “I’m not a maniac” and won’t install it yet outside a VM, but I’m going to try to make the VM my daily driver until it’s time to put it on bare metal.

 

For the haters/doubters…try putting that all aside for a second and just dive in. I think you might find some corner that’s lust worthy.

Comments (39)

39 responses to “Confessions of a Windows 11 Doubter”

  1. jimchamplin

    It runs beautifully on bare metal. I’ve only had a couple of odd crashes.

    • sentinel6671

      You're tempting me to try. I'll let another couple of builds come out and then I might just go for it on my laptop.

      • jimchamplin

        I installed with a hybrid ISO, running Setup within Windows so that it upgraded my system. I had to re-activate my Pro license but it worked flawlessly. This system (Acer Nitro 5, AMD Ryzen 5 4600H) is fully supported. I would fully suggest the hybrid ISO route but install fresh.


        I haven't had any issues, but if you're on unsupported hardware, I think a fresh install would be best.

    • navarac

      ....especially on a fast NVMe drive!

  2. ghostrider

    It sounds like you've been taken in by the eye-candy then, which is probably what MS want. It's clear Win11 isn't the big upgrade MS would like us to believe it is, and under the hood, more control is being removed, but slap on enough lipstick, and MS probably hope most won't notice.

    • sentinel6671

      I don't have time for conspiracy theories. This notion that Microsoft has a grand scheme to take control away from everyone is just silly. They're not that organized. I'll never understand how anyone can waste their time and mental energy coming up with these concepts.

      • boots

        I don't believe in conspiracy theories, or that Microsoft has a grand scheme to take control away from everyone. The reason we have less control with Windows 11 is simply because, again, Microsoft isn't listening to what customers want.

        • hrlngrv

          MSFT cynically but almost certainly accurately knows damn few current Windows users will cease using Windows because of functionality which may have been in Windows for decades but removed from Windows 11. Bluntly put, MSFT figures it doesn't need to give a rat's ass what EXISTING Windows users want. Windows 11 is all about attracting NEW Windows users, and existing Windows users can live with the changes or pound sand.

          • anoldamigauser

            Or perhaps, because of the nefarious telemetry data, they know that most people are not using these features. Everyone seems to trust Google when they say they are collecting data to improve their products.


            On the other hand, perhaps they realized that the number of people who delve into the operation of the OS is near zero, not counting the readership here.

            • hrlngrv

              The readership here, multiplied by 10, is still less than a rounding error in estimates of the Windows user base. We're effectively zero.


              As far as telemetry goes, I figure damn near all enterprises disable telemetry in group policy, and more than a few advanced Windows users do the same on their home machines. Thus, the telemetry MSFT gathers is from mostly less advanced Windows users, though I figure MSFT people are smart enough to understand this and not extrapolate wildly with respect to unnecessary features.


              If the goal were simplification, Windows 10 comes with 8 ways to launch Task Manager:


              1. [Win]+R, type taskmgr, press [Enter].
              2. [Win]+S, start typing task manager, click on Task Manager when it appears.
              3. [Win]+X, click on Task Manager.
              4. [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[Delete], which displays a menu including Task Manager. Click on it.
              5. Run Powershell or CMD, use the command line to start taskmgr.*
              6. Open the Start menu's All Apps list, select Windows Tools (more recent builds). When that Control Panel window appears, click on Task Manager.
              7. [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[Esc].
              8. Right click on the taskbar and click on Task Manager in the popup menu.


              * This includes all other ways to spawn processes from scripting languages and executables.


              There's also pinning Task Manager to the taskbar or Start menu, but that requires user customization.


              Of these, #4 should be considered the only necessary alternative because [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[Delete] is unmaskable, and it needs to exist for security reasons. Having Task Manager in the resulting menu makes obvious sense. All the others are superfluous. Should it matter that it's undiscoverable? How often do normal users need to use Task Manager? Tangent: if the entry in taskbar's right-click menu is unnecessary, so is the [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[Esc] keyboard shortcut, even though that's the way I usually launch it.

      • navarac

        I don't know which sand-pit you've had your head stuck in lately. ....or are you just being silly again?


        Microsoft IS certainly taking control away. You only have to look at something simple, like placement of the taskbar. In Windows 10: top, bottom, left, right. In Windows 11~: bottom and that's it. Open your eyes sentinel6671 to the reality.

  3. jimchamplin

    Let me tell you...


    It's fine.


    You might have to... OMG... change something. OH NOES!!


    If you don't want to change, jeez, just keep running 10. There's nothing wrong with it. I'll keep running 10 on the what? Like... 8 boxes that don't have 2-year-old CPUs. Oh...


    ... wait...


    I'll just hack the crap out of the installer ISO to skip the hardware checks. Maybe Panos and Satya will get sad that people are running 11 on i7-4770s, Core 2 Duos, and old Mac minis and have a big cry together with some fine whine. Does it affect the world in any way?


    No. Run 10. Run hacked 11. Run Linux. Run Hackintosh. Who cares? :D


    (This message brought to you by People for Humorous Views on Computing. Do not take it too seriously. Don't rip off software.)

    • bkkcanuck

      Actually, I highly doubt there will be a hacked Windows 11, and if there were it would be very insecure (hacking software likely made by malware distributors like 'cracking' software often is) and the hacking out of the TPM module would likely create core service instability (I believe the TPM has a hardware based random number generator for cryptography - so any service relying on some of the cryptography functions would be impacted). (there are a lot of things that internally rely on cryptography). Risk/Reward wise hacking Windows 11 to run with Windows 10 has all the same base functionality - would be sheer stupidity.


    • Daishi

      Maybe Panos and Satya will get sad that people are running 11 on i7-4770s, Core 2 Duos, and old Mac minis and have a big cry together with some fine whine.


      No, they won’t. Because they won’t. Because none of those have the necessary security technologies to run it.

      • jimchamplin

        It runs flawlessly on the same hardware as Windows 10. The check for CPU and TPM are done in the installer, not by the OS itself. A Windows 10 installer stick with the install.esd or install.wim replaced by the one from an 11 stick will install Windows 11. Activation still required, of course.

  4. Greg Green

    Most people won’t be able to enjoy the fruits of MS’ genius for quite a few years due to the ridiculous hardware requirements.

  5. yb

    I use my laptop for my work, voluntary work, and my own private use. over the years, I tweaked and moulded Win 10 to my needs, removing apps I never use, using my own file structure, making use of desktop shortcuts.

    My eyesight is not the best, so I use a 150% size display.


    Unfortunately, the biggest issue for me is the taskbar: if you use 150% display, it takes an awful lot of space; on win10 you can mitigate it by moving it sideways. not possible on Win11. so I will not update to Win11 till there is a good tweak to enable me to move the taskbar sideways.


    As to the rest of the pretty Win 11presentation- it is irrelevant to me because I change it to my own preferences anyway[smile].

    The only feature which will probably be helpful for me is the snapping tool.

    The other important consideration is the ability to adapt various settings to my needs- incl my eyesight. this was possible in previous editions of Windows, let's hope this remains the case with Win11.



  6. Chris_Kez

    Good on you for having an open mind.

  7. dmitryko

    It looks like Start screen, Task Bar and File Explorer were carried over from the touch-oriented Windows 10X. Specifically, pop-up menu items are all spaced a finger apart, which is way too large for a mouse-based desktop interface; the same for list items or icon spacing in File Explorer.


    There are other touch-oriented 'features' which are useless for desktop users:

    1) Right-click context menu is removed from Task Bar, there's only Task Bar Settings menu

    2) Task Bar size or placement is not configurable anymore, probably to allow some swiping gestures

    3) Search box option is removed, and only the search icon can be shown

    4) File Explorer replaces the ribbon interface with dedicated Copy/Move/Rename/Delete etc. buttons

    5) Right-click pop-up removes Copy/Move/Rename/Delete menu items and replaces them with dedicated buttons at the top of the pop-up


    Overall, it looks as if the tablet layout is always on, with no option to enable the desktop mode (even though it's supposedly been addressed by Windows 10 back in 2018). And that's an RTM build that's been in making since January and is supposed to be released this October. 



    So I have to ask:


    1) Why Microsoft has to try to force a touch-based user interface on regular desktop users with each new Windows release since 7?


    You can say it's to 'simplify' the UI for non-expert users, but I really doubt they even know (or care) about these advanced features being removed.


    2) Why Microsoft has to reimagine their entire user interface with almost every major relase of Windows? (i.e. 3.1 to 95, XP to Vista, 7 to 8, 8 to 10, 10 to 11)


    No-one else does it consistently - new versions of OS X / macOS, iOS, Android keep the basic design, but Windows team is always shy of their Start UI, even though it came to be copied by Linux shells like KDE Plasma...


    3) Why Microsoft will always persist these UI changes and won't back down even when users actively reject them to the point of downgrading to some previous OS?


    It always takes a new release of the OS to acknowledge the mistakes and go back to the most succesful concepts, but never a service pack or a user-contolled setting.

  8. james.h.robinson

    Windows 11 might be the best thing to ever happen to the Surface Pro X. I'm enjoying it so far on that machine.

  9. hrlngrv

    An OS which is lust worthy? Ever heard the expression get a life?

  10. polloloco51

    My feelings of Windows 8, are the same as Windows 11. If something doesn't smell right, it doesn't smell right. Windows 11 may be a nice OS, but it is fundamentally deeply flawed. It's minimum requirements will kill it's install base, right out of the gate!


    Microsoft has plenty of opportunity to fix this right now! It can still be a great OS!


    Why doesn't Microsoft want everyone to have this? It is so ridiculous!


    FYI

    I would love to install Windows 11, if they allowed me to!

    • hrlngrv

      In fairness, MSFT may be figuring that any PCs without TPM 2 (or is it 1.2?) or 8th gen Intel and equivalent AMD processors should keep running Windows 10 until EOS in about 4 years. MSFT may further be figuring that by that time more than half of PCs in use would meet Windows 11 hardware specs.


      I know for a fact that the 2nd hand IBM PS/2 with 4MB RAM on which I installed Windows 95 for my wife about 25 years ago would NOT have been able to handle Windows NT4. Likewise, the Dell PC on which I had run Windows NT4 with 64MB RAM would have struggled with Windows XP.


      Personally, I have no problem with MSFT insisting on certain minimum hardware for Windows 11. We Windows users have been spoiled rotten since Windows Vista with any PC which could have handled the full Vista desktop UX able to run Windows 7 through Windows 10. That was most definitely not the case between Windows 3.1 and Windows Vista. MSFT has given Windows users 15 years of being able to use the same PCs to run 4 sequential Windows versions. Time's up.


      OTOH, I see no reason whatsoever to buy new hardware to run an OS which, from my perspective, is a downgrade from Windows 10. If there are 3rd party taskbar replacements to go along with 3rd party Start menu replacements, I'll consider buying new hardware to run Windows 11. If not, I have Windows 10 until 2025 and the hope that Windows 12 may fix what Windows 11 fubars.

      • wright_is

        I'm waiting until the new taskbar is feature complete, before I make a call on whether it is better/worse. From such an early beta build, it is hard to judge...


        But I agree with you on the rest. I'm annoyed, that none of my hardware is compatible with Windows 11, but if it is a genuine push to improve security going forward. I won't complain. If it is just marketing, to sell more new PCs, on the other hand, I might look elsewhere going forward.

        • navarac

          It is the current taskbar (Build 22000.65) that makes me insane - spread right across the width of the screen, almost, Granted I put the taskbar in small mode via the registry !!


          (Acknowledgements and thanks to hringrv for his explanation on another post BTW)

        • hrlngrv

          | I'm waiting until the new taskbar is feature complete, before I make a call on whether it is better/worse.


          How many NEW features do you believe MSFT could add to the Windows 11 taskbar given that Windows 11 would need to be feature-complete by late September to have any chance of being preinstalled on new PCs this holiday season?


          Or do you mean the next Windows 11 release in 22H2?

  11. justme

    I am neither hater nor true believer. I simply have yet to see a reason to get excited. Sure, the UI refresh looks nice and was surely needed. But I know I will end up turning off many features anyway. I havent seen a feature yet that makes me want to run it. As a heavy Start Menu user, I dont care for what they have done with it. I feel like they waste a lot of space with the Recommended area, their icons are overblown, and they are going to eventually lob advertisements at us within the OS. I will eventually use it, of course - this will be the future, whether or not I like it - but not until it has actually been released and I know I can "tame" the parts I dont like.

  12. scj123

    I think the timing is perfect, I had been looking at windows recently and it just felt old and stale, Windows 11 just feels fresh and really nice to use, and will just become more polished as it gets nearer to release. I have been using it on my main laptop (not my work laptop) and so far its been perfect.

  13. darlingtonpear

    I post this here because i cannot create new forum posts:


    If like me you hate the windows widgets, you may have used task bar settings to 'hide' the icon.  

    But if you swipe from the left you will notice that this dumpster fire of news is still running.

    Not only that when my machine is at idle it is 2nd largest consumer of memory.


    To uninstall, use powershell with admin permissions and enter the following:

    Get-AppxPackage MicrosoftWindows.Client.WebExperience | Remove-AppxPackage


    So far widgets is dead and no other issues. I suppose it could be resurrected by an update.

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