Articles about Windows 11

Windows 11 already accounts for more Windows installations than you might expect

Laptop running Windows 11

Windows 11 has not even been officially released, but it is already installed on a surprising number of PCs.

The level of interest in the latest version of Microsoft's operating system is such that large numbers of people are taking advantage of the Windows Insider program to try out the preview builds ahead of the launch. The latest Windows usage figures from AdDuplex include Windows 11, and they make for interesting reading.

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Microsoft says it will not be possible to bypass Windows 11 system requirements

Windows 11 laptop

Windows 11 is now just a matter of months away, and system requirements are a concern. While this is not going to be a problem for anyone buying a new computer with the operating system pre-installed, it is a major consideration for anyone upgrading to Windows 11 from Windows 10.

The requirement for TPM 2.0 is something that has attracted particular attention. While Microsoft has made it clear that for OEM customers with special requirements the TPM need can be eliminated with a custom Windows 11 image, the same is not true for the average user. Although a registry hack currently exists that makes it possible to bypass the need for TPM 2.0, Microsoft has stressed that it will not be possible to use Group Policy to get around hardware requirements -- possibly meaning that the registry hack will also not work once Windows 11 is released.

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Microsoft will continue to issue 'C release' patch previews for Windows 11

Laptop running Windows 11

Keeping Windows up-to-date has always been important, from a security point of view. While patches and updates can be released at any time they are needed, Microsoft uses the monthly Patch Tuesday to roll out updates on a regular basis -- so-called 'B releases'.

With Windows 10, the company has long-issued previews of these updates in the form of 'C releases'. Now Microsoft has confirmed that this is something that will continue with Windows 11.

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The Microsoft Store in Windows 11 supports Win32 apps, but the experience is slightly crippled

Windows 11 Microsoft Store

The Microsoft Store has become increasingly important in Windows, and with the arrival of Windows 11 this continues to be the case. Microsoft has not only added Android apps to the Store by partnering with Amazon, but also made it possible to browse and install legacy Win32 apps.

But while the ability to download modern and legacy apps from the same place certainly has advantages, the experience for anyone using the Microsoft Store to install Win32 apps is going to be a little disappointing.

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Kaspersky warns about the potential dangers of downloading Windows 11

Windows 11 laptop

As with any big-name software that is yet to be officially released, there is not only great enthusiasm about Windows 11, but also a rush to get hold of it by any means possible. While there are formal channels through which to obtain Windows 11 legitimately in order to test it out, scammers are taking advantage of the excitement surrounding the new operating system.

Security firm Kaspersky has issued a warning for anyone thinking about downloading Windows 11. The company urges caution lest users find their system infected with malware and adware, particularly in the light of a 1.75GB file that is currentlyu in circulation called 86307_windows 11 build 21996.1 x64 + activator.exe.

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Microsoft backtracks on dark mode; Windows 11 will ship in light mode by default

Windows 11 dark mode

A few days ago, we shared some Windows 11 news that upset a few people. At Microsoft Inspire, it was announced that Windows 11 would ship with dark mode activated by default.

This was not a case of rumor or speculation, this was an announcement made at an official Microsoft event by a Microsoft employee. But now it transpires that the statement about dark mode by default was not correct. Microsoft has been in touch with BetaNews to clarify.

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Best Windows apps this week

Four-hundred-forty-eight in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 and 11 on the Microsoft Store and elsewhere in the past seven days.

Microsoft revealed this week that its DirectStorage API is coming to Windows 10 as well (not just Windows 11 as originally announced). The API improves game loading times on NVMe storage devices significantly.

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Microsoft releases Windows 11 Build 22000.100 (KB5004300) with visual improvements and other tweaks

Windows 11

Earlier in the week, Microsoft rolled out the first preview for Teams in Windows 11. This took the form of new Chat flyout from taskbar, as well as a Teams desktop experience designed to make the best use of the upcoming OS.

This addition is only available to some Windows Insiders, for now, but Microsoft has now released a new Windows 11 build for Insiders in the Dev Channel that comes with a number of visual improvements.

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Windows 11's moving Start button messes with muscle memory and more

Windows 11 dark Start menu

In many regards, the move from Windows 10 to Windows 11 is not a massive one. While there are undeniably a lot of changes and additions -- both visible and under the hood -- the operating system still looks, feels and functions much as it has done for years.

But while it may seem that there's not much to learn, there are still elements of friction that gripe in Windows 11. The redesigned context menu is a good case in point, dividing users into those who love it and those who hate it. And then there is the Start menu. Of course, there is a new look here, but that's not the problem.

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HiveNightmare: Windows 10 and Windows 11 have a security vulnerability that can be exploited to gain administrative access to the registry

Colorful Microsoft logo

A local privilege escalation vulnerability has been discovered in Windows 10 that can used to gain access to otherwise inaccessible areas of the registry. In turn, this access makes it possible to discover passwords, obtain DPAPI decryption keys and more. The problem also affects Windows 11.

Dubbed HiveNightmare (because of the access it allows to registry hives), the zero-day vulnerability comes hot on the heels of the PrintNightmare security flaw. While no patch is currently available, Microsoft has provided details of a workaround in the meantime.

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ZOTAC MEK HERO gaming desktops are Windows 11 ready and made in the USA

What an exciting time to be a PC gamer! There are so many great games to play and the underlying hardware is more powerful than ever. It is amazing to see what game developers are putting out these days. Thanks to the upcoming Steam Deck, these hardcore PC games can be easily taken on the go too.

If you are in the market for a pre-built gaming PC, I have some exciting news. Manufacturer ZOTAC has unveiled gaming desktops that are both Windows 11 ready and assembled in the USA. Called "MEK HERO," there are two models (G1 A5636 and G1 A5837) from which to choose, and they are both powered by high-end AMD CPUs and hardcore NVIDIA GPUs. And yes, they have RGB lighting and glass side-panels. The higher-end MEK HERO G1 A5837 model features CPU liquid-cooling.

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Microsoft brings Teams integration to Windows 11

When Microsoft first announced Windows 11, one of the big new features it talked about was the integration of Chat from Microsoft Teams. The first previews of the new OS for Insiders in the Dev Channel included many of the other promised features and changes, but Teams integration wasn’t among them.

Today that changes as Microsoft begins rolling out the first Preview of Teams Chat to Windows Insiders. This comes in the form of new Chat flyout from taskbar, as well as a Teams desktop experience designed to make the best use of Windows 11.

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Microsoft waxes lyrical about Windows 11's sleek new context menu and share dialog

Laptop running Windows 11

While there are a large number of changes and additions in Windows 11, it is the visual revamp that is what most people will notice first. But Microsoft's redesign of the operating system is about much more than just looks, as the company reveals in an exploration of the updated context menu and share dialog.

Right-click on a file or folder in Windows 11, and you will immediately be struck by the new context menu that appears. In a post on the Windows Developer Blog, Microsoft explains the thinking behind the restyling in terms of aesthetics, user-friendliness and modernization.

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NVIDIA releases Windows 11-compatible DLSS GeForce Game Ready driver

Nvidia headquarters

Highlighting its readiness for Red Dead Redemption 2 and Chernobylite, NVIDIA has released its first Windows 11-compatible GeForce driver. The release sees NVIDIA Following in the footsteps of Intel which released its first Windows 11 driver very recently.

The latest driver from NVIDIA -- the GeForce Game Ready 471.41 WHQL driver -- also adds support for two new G-SYNC Compatible gaming monitors and 13 new GeForce Experience Optimal Playable Setting profiles.

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Microsoft is bringing Windows 11's game-enhancing DirectStorage feature to Windows 10

Microsoft headquarters

Microsoft has eliminated one of the reasons for people to upgrade to Windows 11 later in the year. The company has revealed that DirectStorage -- the storage technology behind Xbox’s Velocity Architecture -- will also be available in Windows 10.

The launch of Windows 11 has already been mired in poor communication in relation to hardware requirements, and it's not clear if the apparent change of heart with DirectStorage in Windows 10 is down to continued weak messaging, or if the company has performed a U-turn based on feedback from disgruntled gamers. Either way, anyone choosing to stick with Windows 10 will benefit from DirectStorage, although it will be a lesser experience than in Windows 11.

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