Windows 11 is an upcoming major version of the Windows NT operating system developed by Microsoft. Announced on June 24, 2021, with an expected release in late 2021, Windows 11 is the successor to Windows 10, released in 2015.
Windows 11 has all the power and security of Windows 10 with a redesigned and refreshed look. It also comes with new tools, sounds, and apps. Every detail has been considered. All of it comes together to bring you a refreshing experience on your PC.
Start with pinned apps and cloud-powered “Recommendations”.
- Start: Start puts everything you need on your PC at the center with a set of pinned apps and a cloud powered “Recommended” section that shows your recently opened files from both your PC and across your devices like your smartphone with OneDrive.
- Taskbar: Taskbar is also centered with beautiful new animations. Try pinning, launching, switching, minimizing, and rearranging your apps on Taskbar to see the beautiful new animations.
- Notification Center & Quick Settings: The lower right corner of Taskbar has a button for Notification Center (WIN + N) and Quick Settings (WIN + A). Notification Center is the home for all your notifications in the OS and a full-month calendar view. Quick Settings is the place for you to manage common PC settings quickly and easily like Volume, Brightness, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Focus Assist. Directly above your Quick Settings, you will see media playback controls when playing music or videos in Microsoft Edge or streaming music in apps like Spotify.
- File Explorer: We made File Explorer modern with a clean look and brand-new command bar. We have also introduced beautifully designed context menus when right-clicking in File Explorer or on your desktop. App developers will be able to extend the new context menus. We are working to publish documentation for app developers on how to do this with their apps soon.
- Themes: In addition to brand new default themes for Windows 11 for both dark and light mode, it also includes four additional themes so you can make Windows feel the way you want it to. All the new themes were designed to complement the centered Taskbar. We have also added new contrast themes for people with visual impairments such as light sensitivity. To change your theme, just right-click on your desktop and choose “Personalize”.
- Sounds: The sounds in Windows 11 have been designed to be lighter and more atmospheric. They are also slightly different depending on whether your Windows theme is in dark mode or light mode. The startup sound for Windows also makes its return in which you’ll hear when your PC boots up to the Lock screen and is ready to go for you to login.
These are the basic requirements for installing Windows 11 on a PC. If your device does not meet these requirements, you may not be able to install Windows 11 on your device and might want to consider purchasing a new PC. If you are unsure whether your PC meets these requirements, you can check with your PC Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) or, if your device is already running Windows 10, you can use the PC Health Check app to assess compatibility.
- Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
- RAM: 4 gigabyte (GB)
Storage:64 GB or larger storage device
- System firmware: UEFI, Secure Boot capable
- TPM: Trusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0
- Graphics card:Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver
- Display: High definition (720p) display that is greater than 9” diagonally, 8 bits per color channel
- Internet connection and Microsoft accounts: Windows 11 Home requires an active internet connection and a Microsoft Account to complete initial, first-use setup of the operating system, or when switching a device out of Windows 11 Home in S-mode.
A new look for 11
Feature deprecations and removals
When upgrading to Windows 11 from Windows 10 or when installing an update to Windows 11, some features may be deprecated or removed. Please see below for information regarding some of the key features impacted:
- Cortana will no longer be included in the first boot experience or pinned to the Taskbar.
- Desktop wallpaper cannot be roamed to or from device when signed in with a Microsoft account.
- Internet Explorer is disabled. Microsoft Edge is the recommended replacement and includes IE Mode which may be useful in certain scenarios.
- Math Input Panel is removed. Math Recognizer will install on demand and includes the math input control and recognizer. Math inking in apps like OneNote are not impacted by this change.
- News & Interests has evolved. New functionality has been added which can be found by clicking the Widgets icon on the Taskbar.
- Quick Status from the Lockscreen and associated settings are removed.
- S Mode is only available now for Windows 11 Home edition.
- Snipping Tool continues to be available but the old design and functionality in the Windows 10 version has been replaced with those of the app previously known as Snip & Sketch.
- Start is significantly changed in Windows 11 including the following key deprecations and removals:
- Named groups and folders of apps are no longer supported and the layout is not currently resizable.
- Pinned apps and sites will not migrate when upgrading from Windows 10.
- Live Tiles are no longer available. For glanceable, dynamic content, see the new Widgets feature.
- Tablet Mode is removed and new functionality and capability is included for keyboard attach and detach postures.
- Taskbar functionality is changed including:
- People is no longer present on the Taskbar.
- Some icons may no longer appear in the System Tray (systray) for upgraded devices including previous customizations.
- Alignment to the bottom of the screen is the only location allowed.
- Apps can no longer customize areas of the Taskbar.
- Timeline is removed. Some similar functionality is available in Microsoft Edge.
- Touch Keyboard will no longer dock and undock keyboard layouts on screen sizes 18 inches and larger.
- Wallet is removed.
The following apps will not be removed on upgrade but will no longer be installed on new devices or when clean-installing Windows 11. They are available for download from the Store:
- 3D Viewer
- OneNote for Windows 10
- Paint 3D
Windows 11 full localization languages include: Arabic (Saudi Arabia), Bulgarian (Bulgaria), Chinese (PRC), Chinese (Taiwan), Croatian (Croatia), Czech (Czech Republic), Danish (Denmark), Dutch (Netherlands), English (United Kingdom), English (United States), Estonian (Estonia), Finnish (Finland), French (France), French (Canada), German (Germany), Greek (Greece), Hebrew (Israel), Hungarian (Hungary), Italian (Italy), Japanese (Japan), Korean (Korea), Latvian (Latvia), Lithuanian (Lithuania), Norwegian, Bokmål (Norway), Polish (Poland), Portuguese (Brazil), Portuguese (Portugal), Romanian (Romania), Russian (Russia), Serbian (Latin, Serbia), Slovak (Slovakia), Slovenian (Slovenia), Spanish (Spain), Spanish (Mexico), Swedish (Sweden), Thai (Thailand), Turkish (Turkey), Ukrainian (Ukraine).
Additional languages available as Language Interface Packs