Page 28 - Forest Row Local August Edition
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28 August 2022 • Forest Row Local
Windows 11: a worthy successor?
Every recent operating system had a turbulent toddlerhood. As windows 11’s painful early months fade into the painful present, we have shiny new toys with which
to play - Yay! These are all to the good but is this superficial bling enough to offset Microsoft’s all- too-evident efforts to stamp their preferences on your digital life?
Windows 11 has been good
and bland enough that many people did not realise that they had been upgraded. Microsoft giveth with goodies such as enhanced dictation with automatic punctuation; funky desktop layouts that can remember where you
like to see your apps’ windows;
the opportunity to use some Android apps and other cute touches. And Microsoft taketh away by emasculating the built-in File History backup, hiding or eliminating previously-prominent useful features and pushing
their ecosystem as the way. To a degree Windows 11 is Windows 8 again: pulling out components in the focus toward smaller mobile devices. Did you ever hear of Windows 9? There is a reason...
Now, a couple of trivial examples. Suppose you want to change
the default web browser from Microsoft’s Edge to, say, Firefox. This now involves several minutes of ferreting out and clicking numerous choices. By contrast,
if you wish to return Edge to its default-browser throne then this achieved in a single swift click.
A similar enthusiasm to have things Microsoft’s way appears when setting up Windows
11: every home user will find themselves strong-armed into using a Microsoft account with its enhanced tendency to share information with Microsoft.
Do you fancy some computer bling without Windows 11? Microsoft have long offered a free utility that produces such software sparkles
as Windows 11 only dreams of. Suitably named PowerToys, this neatly describes the Windows 11 cage d’or. Whatever flashy new bits may gild that cage, underneath the bling the direction of travel continues with the enthusiasm for ‘getting to know you’ better and promoting Microsoft’s control of your data and your computer.
Windows 10 support expires in October 2025. It will work beyond this but without the security software patches that Microsoft regularly issues. Upgrading to Windows 11 is enduringly available but be aware... Microsoft have decided that it will not run on many older computers. In fact,
it will not even run on a number
of recent computers due to perplexingly restrictive system requirements. As a result, perfectly capable computers with plenty of life left in them will be consigned to the rubbish tip because, for example, their processor is not
on Windows 11’s preferred list. How one squares this rampant obsolescence with Mr Gates’
By Roger Lyon -
strident climate-change pan- beating is an open question...
A friendly word of warning. Once your Windows 11 account is setup, disk encryption generally starts automatically. It would be nice to have a warning notice
of the encryption but this was somehow omitted. Encrypting your files may be a good thing since encrypted data is safe from prying eyes should your device be ‘lost’. Encryption makes backup essential. That is worth repeating: make a backup where you can place your hand on it. The first thing that you will want to check is that your decryption key is stored somewhere safe. Common options include your Microsoft account, naturally the last place that interested parties might look. Lose that key and... did I say that backup is a good idea to avoid a nasty disappointment...?
Windows 11 is here to stay. You may prefer to dawdle your way towards it. This maximises the life of your current computer, allows Windows 11 to mature and gives you time to explore your options.
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