Welcome to a new era and the sunrise of Windows 11!
Last month Microsoft hosted a virtual launch event that was preceded by numerous hints relating to their planned announcements around the next update to Windows – what Satya Nadella referred to as the most significant update to Windows in more than a decade during his Microsoft BUILD 2021 keynote.
Unfortunately, a pre-release/internal build of what we now know as Windows 11 was leaked a couple of weeks ahead of the event. While it spoiled some of the various user interface surprises, it turns out that leaked build was only the start as the @Windows Twitter account jokingly referred to the leaked build in a very well worded sub-tweet.
Suffice it to say, when Microsoft started their virtual launch party for Windows 11 on the 24th of June – there was much more to be seen which the leaked build did not show.
Of course, I am testing Windows 11 as part of the Windows Insider Program just like many of you are. The first build, 22000.51, was released to the Dev Channel on 28 June and now most anyone who wanted access to the new bits was able to download and install the update for testing.
I currently have Windows 11 (Build 22000.51) installed on six physical devices of varying specifications including three touchscreen devices and three desktops including the beast I built last summer as my Pandemic PC Build.
The other two physical devices, a BMAX Mini PC and the HP Elite1K are also running the new bits although the Elite1K does not pass the PC Health Check app test due to its i5 CPU. With that said, it also runs Windows 11 quite well. I am also quite impressed with the Mini PC’s performance on Windows 11 for a $240 device.
In the mobile department, the new Windows 11 bits are running on a Lenovo X1 Yoga that is my long-term Dev Channel machine and is grandfathered into testing because it does not meet the initial Windows 11 specs. This device is I have installed this preview on the Surface Go (OG) which most definitely does not meet the Windows 11 specs but is making a decent go at running the OS update. Finally, courtesy of Microsoft, I have a Surface Laptop 4, the AMD Ryzen model with 16GB of RAM, 512Gb of SSD based storage, and AMD Radeon graphics that launched in October 2020. Of course, this device looks great in Windows 11 Dark Mode alongside the matte black finish of the laptop itself. Performance wise – it is showing off the Windows 11 bits quite nicely and will be a great platform to experience Windows 11 throughout testing.
Finally, I do have Windows 11 installed in a virtual machine in Hyper-V on my main desktop – which is also running Windows 11.
My plan for this series of blog posts where I muse about Windows 11 will be just that – sharing what I notice, experience, and find unique or challenging. They are not a multi-part review either – we have only just gotten access to the first public development build – that means it is early stages when you consider the release is not expected until later this year.
In my next post, I will share initial impressions and thoughts as I have installed and started using Windows 11 across these six devices.
I would love to hear about your own experience with Windows 11, so please feel free to be part of the discussion in the comments below.
P.S. Thanks to a tip from my fellow MVP, Shawn Keene, I have added a little Windows 11 touch to the blog. Can you tell what it is?
Hint: Check out the images…