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Windows 11: the update and look at by: GF Willmetts (article).

November 19, 2021 | By | Reply More

One of the things that has also always puzzled me is how far down the list my computers are for updating Windows. On Friday 15 November 2021, it happened with my back-up computer, which is a couple years older than my laptop, which looks like it’ll be a few weeks before that happens. When you consider how many millions of PC computers are being updated, it’s a big undertaking and needs patience and have fun with Windows 10 until it happens.

There a few useful things to know. On your Settings page it will flash up it is ready to download and install Windows 11. It DOES NOT do this automatically. Bear this in mind and do it overnight as it takes some 7½ hours! There is no need to stand out it in case it needs any button presses to continue as everything is automatic. The initial stages took over 5 hours and then another two hours downloading and installing updates. Although I didn’t try it as I was observing, I suspect you would be able to do some things on W10 during the two download processes but not at all in the updates stage, more on that further down.

The opening screen has the date in a new font and the means to put in whatever password you are using and a new ding dong, before selecting your password entry. I did have a look at the various sounds you can associate to problems and whathaveyou and they are all the same. Considering you can change them and you have a back catalogue of WAV files, you would have thought that might have had a better choice. A minor quibble.

Then you have an opening window that you can see and play around with the differences, specifically with Explorer, the Edge and so forth. You also get its version of the menu which icons things. The icons on the bottom menu bar are now line centralised. I discovered later but haven’t played with it yet that you can close some of the icons down so you’re not bothered with MS Store and things. If you’ve been using the Windows 7 menu, the command is there and by selecting it, it will then calibrate itself to the new W11 in record time. A lot of the original settings from W10 are still maintained, so you will still have your screensaver and wallpaper changer as they were originally. I’m not too surprised at that because Microsoft has transportable files between systems that keeps track of your software but even the Windows settings are kept.

For those of you with Norton, you will have to put in your email address and password and it also takes a detour to establish Google if you have a connection that way as well. It does not require you to link into the Norton home page unlike earlier times. This is all based on one computer but I hope it’s true on other computers. Presumably, a similar pattern will happen with other anti-virus software.

I did check the Updates in Settings and there were three outstanding, including one that it was installing in W10 when the update happened. You probably know this but no harm noting and they were allowed to continue.

Everything else feels pretty much like before, unless you have a yen for MS Store and Widgets and, as I said above, they can be removed from the menu bar so they don’t bother you by mistake.

There is some clarity in the Windows controls to personalise to your own taste although I’m surprised the button in the Control Panel will allow a switchback to Windows 7. I wonder how many try that just to see what happens? I haven’t. Mind you, when you consider W7 isn’t supported anymore this does seem crazy. I mean, why not a reversion to W10? Saying that, W11 looks so much like W10 with only a program window, by pressing the 4 square icon, looking like the most major change.

Saying that, I’m still wondering what is radically different. The second boot-up so far seems a little long but I haven’t got much else to compare it to until the laptop’s turn comes and I might have to add a few notes about that. You’ll notice that much of this article is being written based on the first looks and I’ve kept some paragraphs in for that reason.

On my third boot-up, it was a lot faster and a little more look at the Settings seems to indicate that it looks for updates on boot-up although I wish there was something on the screen indicating what it is doing. No doubt when I use W11 on my regular computer and it has something to download I’ll see if there is any difference. I do tend to think it is important that the user is told what is going on rather than just staring at a blank screen even when there are no updates. The fourth boot-up was a lot faster so don’t be impatient, it’s just the system settling down. Shutdown, it will ask about any open software and closes down just as fast.

Oh, unlike W10, there is no automatic installation of Microsoft’s basic games like Solitaire but according to the MS Store they are free downloads, although these are the W10 versions. I think I’ll be sticking to my W7 games version.

You should also prepare if you have a DVD drive for a System Repair Disk and for a full back-up, have an external hard drive, suitably partitioned, for those back-up files. It will look at any medium you choose to do this to ensure you have enough space. I discovered I hadn’t so ordered another one up.

I’ve done the back-up. For those who are doing it, bear in mind the first time takes about an hour and if the size is consistent should be 106.61gB. Interestingly, 52% took the usual time, jumped to 97% and then took a longer time, so patience should be employed.

‘Windows 11 For Dummies’ is on my agenda but unless there are a lot of things I’ve missed, I can’t see anything radically different. Well, maybe until the first update but with two hours’ worth already, that might be some time. Even so, you have to wonder why these updates weren’t just included in the main installation by now.

I will run a similar report when the laptop gets its announcement to update but I’m definitely going to let it do it overnight and sleep through the process. If nothing else, I’ll be wide awake the next morning to look at any things that need serious addressing. I would suggest if you have a cable to your router that you hook it up, just in case there are any signal problems.

An odd thing today, 19 November 2021. I’ve been keeping my noisy previous laptop alive to see what it would do as it wouldn’t be able to download Windows 11 and it downloaded an update to W10, taking a couple hours, with some W11 emulations, noticeable by some of the things it was telling me on boot-up, including adding MS Office 365 that I got for the later laptop. That does tend to suggest that even if your current computer can’t update, you will at least have some of the similar functions.

GF Willmetts

November 2021

 

Category: Computers

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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