Forced Win 11 at work; not bad, not great

We got new laptops at work yesterday. Latitude 5520 running Win 11 Pro. So after trying Win 11 for a few weeks right after it came out, then switching back to Win 10, I now need to re-learn 11. initial impressions:

Same as when I tried 11 late last year, some things I like better than 10, some things I like less. But the things I liked less as a personal user/tweaker-geek—the same complaints shared on this site—do not bother me as much when I put on my office grunt hat.

As a personal PC user I switched back to 10 because 11 just did not feel finished. That and the default apps/Bing-pushing stuff. Right-click on the taskbar is a good example, though that was not a call to arms for me the way it was for some. (In the past day I taught my fingers to click on Start rather than the taskbar to summon task manager.) I said I would try it again in a year or so.

Getting work done yesterday felt no different on the new laptop I got early afternoon than it did on the old laptop I used in the morning. Some slight tweaking to how I lauch apps from Start was the only change.

That’s the key, I think. Folks at either extreme—either total tech-luddites who can’t or won’t learn anything new and feel threatened by any change, or else enthusiast-geeks who flock to sites like this and obsess about stuff—will not react well to the moving from 10 to 11.

The vast middle ground of people just trying to get stuff done and have a little fun surfing the Web will adjust just fine. I am more of an enthusiast-geek at home, but more of a get-stuff-done normal user at work. At the office, I worry less about right-clicking and task manager and dodging Edge and Bing, and whether to center Start or how to find stuff in Settings with the fewest clicks.

I do spend more time than I should focusing on that stuff at home. Plus I have much more latitude to play around with my own PCs, install Open Shell and tweak stuff, etc.

Though now that I think of it, I do not like the way icons look on the Win 11 taskbar. Notepad and task manager minimized just don’t look like. Let’s see if there is a way to change that without setting off alarm bells with company IT….



Conversation 3 comments

  • alsorun

    05 May, 2022 - 10:48 am

    <p>Thank you for a well-balanced article. Some older people are resistant to change because they feel they lose control when the world changes around them. Some think they are the ultimate arbitrator of truth and all others are simply fools. </p>

    • scoop

      05 May, 2022 - 2:20 pm

      <p>The challenge of Windows will never change. How to create one OS to rule them all: Grandpa who can’t or won’t learn anything new; uber-geeks who live to play on the cutting edge and like to criticize; office workers focused on getting work done without hassle; hard-core gamers; home users in the vast middle ground between Grandpa and uber-geek; running on 12-year-old ThinkPads and 12th-gen Intel systems; tablet and touchscreen and desktops with ancient 4×3 monitors. And sell the new OS to corporate IT folks who for the most part have made peace with Win 10. It’s amazing they come as close to pulling that off as they do, on a good day. Whether Win 11 is a good day is still an open question, I think. But I am using it right now with no major issues….P.S. We really need an edit function on these forums. I thought I had fixed the typos in my OP, but the system grabbed the earlier version, from before I hit "post." I think. Strange stuff.</p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p>

  • rob_segal

    Premium Member
    05 May, 2022 - 1:16 pm

    <p>Windows 11 needs more time and attention, and not just on the first layer of interfaces. Deeper questions need to be asked. For example, right-clicking on the taskbar for task manager. People want that added back, even though it’s in the quick access menu when you right-click on the start button. The issue I would raise is why is the task manager that essential and does that indicate a deeper problem in the performance and stability of the OS and the apps that run on it? On macOS, the activity monitor isn’t in a dock menu, isn’t in the Apple menu, and is only located in the Utilities folder in Applications in the Finder. A user can pin it to the dock if they want. Microsoft provides more ways to get to task manager than Apple does with Activity Monitor, but it’s still not enough? The solution to this may not be to add it to yet another place in the OS, but address the reasons why people access it to begin with. Handle background processes better and more efficiently, handle freezes better, things like that so users do not feel like they must have task manager available to them everywhere.</p><p><br></p><p>I could ask more questions. Should applications and user’s files be accessed in the same spot, a start menu that’s blended with File Explorer? What’s the best way to unify UI and UX in Windows for consistency? If Microsoft is going to rebuild the taskbar, is there a better way to design it, something totally different? They can’t create a dock and menu bar. That’s too much like macOS, which I found to be much better than the taskbar. What to do with inbox utilities, especially the really old ones dating back decades? Do we really need dialer.exe anymore? Questions like that. Questions that need to be asked, won’t be asked, therefore, won’t ever be answered.</p><p><br></p><p>Those are the kind of thoughts I have about Windows 11 now. Windows needs to be simpler, but it also needs foundational improvements. Everything needs to be touched and thought about with a focus and vision about details. That won’t happen and would be a massive undertaking for an old OS.</p>

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