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By Abhay V
Microsoft details the features being deprecated or removed in Windows 11
by Abhay Venkatesh
Microsoft unveiled Windows 11 today, sharing with the world the work that is has been doing in the past year to revamp Windows with new UI elements, a new store that supports Android apps, and more. The company also detailed the minimum hardware requirements needed to run the OS, which is expected to be released this holiday. For eligible Windows 10 users, the latest OS will be a free upgrade.
While there is a lot of information about the new features, UI changes, and improvements, the company has also detailed all the features that it will be deprecating or removing from Windows 10 when users upgrade to Windows 11. While the list of deprecated features between major Windows 10 releases was usually small, there are a bunch of significant features that will no longer be worked on or completely removed from Windows 11.
Some of these features are obvious additions, such as the tiles and app folders in the Start menu. With Windows 11 moving to a new layout that consists of just app icons, the OS will not retain any folders made in the Start menu when it upgrades to Windows 11. Another feature that will be removed is the ability to sync wallpapers across devices.
The company is also making S Mode – a version of the OS that prevents the installation of non-Store apps – available only for Windows 11 Home users. Previously, S Mode was essentially a locked-down version of Windows 10 Pro, so it isn’t clear if there will be a path for those running Windows 10 in S Mode to upgrade to Windows 11.
Windows 11 will also prevent users from changing the position of the taskbar, which means that it is locked to the bottom of the screen, unlike with older versions that allowed for moving the taskbar to the top, or the sides.
Here is the complete list of deprecated features:
Additionally, there are a bunch of apps that will no longer be pre-loaded in the OS, which the company says can be installed from the Microsoft Store. This includes the OneNote for Windows 10 app, which is the UWP-based version of OneNote. Skype is also being removed in favor of Teams in Windows 11.
Here are the four apps that will be removed:
With the official launch of Windows 11 still a few months away, it is not clear if there will be any additions or changes to these lists.
Remote Desktop Connection Manager launches on official Sysinternals download site
by Chris Dupres
In a move that will make systems administrators everywhere rejoice, Microsoft has made good on a promise made in February to bring the Remote Desktop Connection Manager, or rdcman, into the actively supported Sysinternals suite of applications.
If you are not aware, rdcman is a must have for administrators dealing with a lot of different remote connections, especially if they require different sets of connections or connection properties. Google even used it for their Cloud IAP secure remote access infrastructure to get access to Windows Virtual Machines in their Google Cloud Platform until they had to release their own tool.
Rdcman, as important as it has been, has not gotten very active development over the years and has languished as a barely supported application. So when Mark Russinovich promised that it would join Sysinternals that was a big deal to the systems administration community. Today that has become reality with version 2.81 available for download with all the other critical support tools necessary to running Windows at scale.
Source: Microsoft via Daniele Francioni
Microsoft will offer Windows 11 as a free upgrade to Windows 10 users
by Anmol Mehrotra
Earlier today, Microsoft announced Windows 11 operating system. The new update will bring a visual overhaul along with performance and productivity improvements as well as native support for Android apps.
If you are excited about Windows 11 then we have great news for you. Microsoft has confirmed that the Windows 11 update will be free for all Windows 10 users. The caveat, however, is making sure your device meets the minimum system requirements, though you can bypass those for now.
The company further hinted that the Windows 11 update may not be free forever. While Microsoft has not defined the time period in which a user needs to grab the new update, the company notes that it "reserves the right to eventually end support for the free offer." However, the "end date will be no sooner than one year from general availability."
Microsoft also noted that Windows 11 users can "move back to Windows 10 while keeping files and data". After the 10-day period is over, users will need take a backup and do a clean install if they want to move back to Windows 10. Lastly, Microsoft also noted that those who have devices with Windows 10 in S mode can get Windows 11 Home, provided they meet the minimum system requirements. However, if you have a device with Windows 10 Pro in S mode then you will need to move out of S mode and upgrade as there is no Windows 11 Pro in S mode.
If you are using older versions of Windows, then you will need to first move to Windows 10 in order to claim the free Windows 11 upgrade.
By Abhay V
Microsoft confirms that Windows 10 version 21H2 will be released later this year
by Abhay Venkatesh
It’s Windows 11 day today as Microsoft finally took the wraps off the next major version of Windows. The OS brings with it a revamped UI, new Microsoft Store that can house Android apps, and a bunch of other improvements aimed at productivity, touch, and more. The firm also shared the updated minimum requirements for running the OS, though, you can bypass those for now.
The Redmond firm posted a separate blog post for IT admins detailing the changes to update cadence and the support lifecycle, announcing that the company will move to an annual update cadence for Windows 11. In that post, it added that once Windows 11 becomes available for Windows Insiders, it will let enterprise customers test the OS out on Azure Virtual Desktop.
Additionally, in a note at the bottom of the blog, the company confirmed that it will be shipping Windows 10 version 21H2 later this fall. Here’s the verbiage included in the post:
It is not clear whether version 21H2 will contain any consumer-facing features, at the moment. The firm says that users can update to 21H2 to “stay on an updated, secure, and supported version of Windows 10 as [they] plan [their] Windows 11 journey”, so it is anybody’s guess what the plans for Windows 10 are, post the H2 update for this fall. While the PC Health Check tool does assure incompatible device users that they will “keep getting Windows 10 updates”, it is not clear as to how long that will be.
Additionally, there is no word on what the specifics are for LTSC customers with Windows 11 as the firm is expected to release the next LTSC version this fall, which is most likely version 21H2. It is also not known if 21H2 will be yet another enablement package as has been the case with the last two “feature updates”. The company might share more details as it heads closer to the launch of Windows 11.
By Abhay V
Windows 11 will move to an annual update cadence, gets a new support lifecycle
by Abhay Venkatesh
Microsoft finally took the wraps off Windows 11 today, showing off the work it’s been doing to revamp the UI and bring about new experiences for touch-based devices, productivity, and more. The company also surprised everyone by announcing that it will support Android apps on Windows 11 through a dedicated Amazon Store. Additionally, the company detailed the minimum system requirements for the OS.
In addition to these announcements for consumers, the firm also announced what the update cadence would be for IT admins who deploy and manage updates for the OS in a separate blog post. As part of these details, the firm revealed that Windows 11 will follow an annual update cadence, meaning it will receive major updates just once a year, unlike Windows 10 that has been updated twice a year – albeit with the last year only bringing enablement packages.
In addition to the change in the number of updates, the Redmond giant is also tweaking the support lifecycle for the product. Users running Home and Pro SKUs will be supported for 24 months, while Enterprise and Education users will be supported for 36 months. This contrasts with the confusing support timelines for Windows 10 versions that varied based on when the version was released.
The change to an annual update cadence will be a welcome one for consumers and enterprises alike, and the extended support timelines for businesses – up from the 30 months for Windows 10 H2 releases – might push more admins to consider the move to Windows 11 sooner rather than later.