Microsoft officially announces Windows 11

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PingSpike

Lifer
Feb 25, 2004
21,643
478
126
Windows 2000 wasn't really a lot different than NT4, but it merged in directx and plug and play. Basically all the good stuff from the 9x line. And since NT4 was a ton more stable
If you were coming from 98SE, XP was a dramatic improvement. Drivers would have been an issue because some vendors back then didn't want to support 'NT' with drivers for consumer products and so you didn't have drivers from 2000 or earlier NT versions for those.

If you were coming from 2000, XP pre-SP1 was... worse. Heavier hardware requirements for... not much benefit, various annoying glitches like the frozen taskbar, controversial UI changes like the new start menu (first real redesign since the start menu was introduced in 95). Not really any driver issues since I believe 2000 drivers would run on XP fineish.
Pretty much how it went for me. I was a fairly early adopter of 2000. Even though I was broke it was worth ponying up for the extra ram.

I actually ran 2K through almost the entire XP era, XP didn't offer anything I wanted. It wasn't awful or anything, but I'd say it was just slightly worse mostly due to higher ram needs and a UI I didn't much care for. I did eventually switch to XPx64. There wasn't a 2000 version of that.
 
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VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
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Windows 2000 wasn't really a lot different than NT4, but it merged in directx and plug and play. Basically all the good stuff from the 9x line. And since NT4 was a ton more stable

Pretty much how it went for me. I was a fairly early adopter of 2000. Even though I was broke it was worth ponying up for the extra ram.

I actually ran 2K through almost the entire XP era, XP didn't offer anything I wanted. It wasn't awful or anything, but I'd say it was just slightly worse mostly due to higher ram needs and a UI I didn't much care for. I did eventually switch to XPx64. There wasn't a 2000 version of that.
Yup, I remember going from 128 megs to 256 megs to 640 megs of RAM in an attempt to feed the beast known as 2000. At 640 it was actually very happy. (And here 20 years later, I have 64 gigs of RAM... funny how things evolve)

Re XPx64, there wouldn't have been an earlier version because I think x64 was only invented/commercialized around... 2003 or 2004? When did AMD launch the first Athlon that had it and Intel followed like a year or two later? And interestingly, if you remember, XPx64 was NT version 5.2, i.e. the same code base as Windows Server 2003, rather than 5.1 like 32-bit XP. But man, I never ran XPx64 but I recall hearing that the driver support was terrible. I went x64 mid-way through the Vista period and it was... barely okay... on drivers then.
 

PingSpike

Lifer
Feb 25, 2004
21,643
478
126
Yup, I remember going from 128 megs to 256 megs to 640 megs of RAM in an attempt to feed the beast known as 2000. At 640 it was actually very happy. (And here 20 years later, I have 64 gigs of RAM... funny how things evolve)

Re XPx64, there wouldn't have been an earlier version because I think x64 was only invented/commercialized around... 2003 or 2004? When did AMD launch the first Athlon that had it and Intel followed like a year or two later? And interestingly, if you remember, XPx64 was NT version 5.2, i.e. the same code base as Windows Server 2003, rather than 5.1 like 32-bit XP. But man, I never ran XPx64 but I recall hearing that the driver support was terrible. I went x64 mid-way through the Vista period and it was... barely okay... on drivers then.
Yeah, x64 was pretty much just a the 2003 server codebase, probably with better client defaults. I switched it sort of late in its life cycle, as a way to avoid vista and still use my ram. I think by then any drivers problems it had were worked out. Once vista was out drivers for 64-bit things were very common. The only device I ever had that didn't have a driver was some cheap USB 56K modem.
 

Puffnstuff

Lifer
Mar 9, 2005
15,450
4,157
136
I was forced to do a clean install on both of my AMD based machines but once done I'm digging 11 on them.
 

pcgeek11

Lifer
Jun 12, 2005
18,763
2,409
126
I was forced to do a clean install on both of my AMD based machines but once done I'm digging 11 on them.
I updated the TPM Firmware on my HP 800 G2 DM and then did the CPU Check bypass in the registry. Installed clean and it is running better than it did when I was doing the Insider Preview Program on the same machine.

I wouldn't pay for this upgrade, but since the price is right why not. I still have my primary running Windows 10.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,227
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This is nice from 2 days ago.


:cool:
 

Puffnstuff

Lifer
Mar 9, 2005
15,450
4,157
136
I finally did a clean install on the 4th and last machine today as if failed to upgrade just like the other 3. Now with that over I can get back to other important things like playing games and snacking.
 
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OlyAR15

Senior member
Oct 23, 2014
710
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I finally upgraded my 7th and last PC to Win11. This one isn't supported (has a 6500T cpu, only TPM1.2), but with the modified dll, I did a complete wipe of the SSD and did a clean install. Worked perfectly.
 

biostud

Lifer
Feb 27, 2003
15,659
979
126
Isn't one of the main reasons to launch a Windows 11, to end legacy support of older hardware?

As far as I can see the changes are more or less what could be in a feature update for Windows 10, but Microsoft really want people running the OS on newer machines only.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
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91
Isn't one of the main reasons to launch a Windows 11, to end legacy support of older hardware?

As far as I can see the changes are more or less what could be in a feature update for Windows 10, but Microsoft really want people running the OS on newer machines only.
The problem is that 'Microsoft' doesn't seem very unified on this point.

The reality is that what the development team produced is what should fairly be called NT 6.5 (assuming you count all feature updates for 10 as 6.4). It works like all the other NT 6.x versions, it uses the same drivers as the other NT 6.x versions, and the main difference is that it's got some UI tweaks, a different taskbar/start menu, etc. But under the hood it seems to largely just be another 64-bit NT 6.x.

Then somebody, probably in marketing, decided that this thing should be restricted to <3 year old processors. But there isn't anything that actually restricts it to the newer hardware beyond a check that Microsoft themselves now tell you how to bypass. The "legacy" code, e.g. for booting off BIOS/MBR, is all still there and works just like it always has. And I think everybody who has tried it on a solid, older machine that has always run NT 6.x well has found that this thing works just as well.

The whole thing is a complete joke - if they had wanted to be serious about this, they could have done what Apple did in... I forget what OS X release, snow leopard, maybe, and cut a lot of the legacy code, cut the hardware support list, and make the OS something like half the size of the previous version. But they didn't do that.
 

mikeymikec

Lifer
May 19, 2011
15,045
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The whole thing is a complete joke - if they had wanted to be serious about this, they could have done what Apple did in... I forget what OS X release, snow leopard, maybe, and cut a lot of the legacy code, cut the hardware support list, and make the OS something like half the size of the previous version. But they didn't do that.
The weird thing is, MS has had sufficient reason to do some serious house-cleaning in Windows for a decade or so (their attempts to go into the tablet/phone market for example), yet Windows is just as full of legacy stuff as it ever has been as you said. So many missed opportunities (netbooks for example as well), because (it seems to me anyway) that upper levels of management don't understand that you can either maintain legacy connections (which is really handy, being able to run a program from 20+ years ago on the latest version of Windows), or you can streamline the hell out of Windows and port it to all kinds of hardware platforms.

My alternate theory is that Microsoft would like to do streamline Windows for the reason I suggested, but Windows is so poorly maintained that Microsoft wouldn't know how to achieve this in any desirable time frame. My impression of Microsoft's products for at least twenty years is that when whatever software platform they've designed can't do what they need, they just plonk another one on top. Visual C libraries are an example of what I mean; why isn't there a single Visual C library that gets updated, and provided you have an up-to-date version it shouldn't matter whether you're running an app designed for the 2008 or 2021 libraries?
 
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Insert_Nickname

Diamond Member
May 6, 2012
4,418
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So many missed opportunities (netbooks for example as well), because (it seems to me anyway) that upper levels of management don't understand that you can either maintain legacy connections (which is really handy, being able to run a program from 20+ years ago on the latest version of Windows), or you can streamline the hell out of Windows and port it to all kinds of hardware platforms.
The alternative is running a VM for legacy compatibility. You may in fact get better backwards compatibility that way. It's not like running a copy of something Win2k or XP-like is a huge drain on resources on a modern system. 2kSP4 only requires 56MB RAM f.x. I doubt it'd even wake a modern CPU. What's more, with something like big.Little you'd have the efficiency cores to handle that.

I was totally surprised during lockdown in spring when my banker pulled up what looked like a custom DOS banking program running in VirtualBox!

My alternate theory is that Microsoft would like to do streamline Windows for the reason I suggested, but Windows is so poorly maintained that Microsoft wouldn't know how to achieve this in any desirable time frame.
Given how complex Windows has become, and how much housecleaning there has been done already, I doubt there is anyone left who actually knows how it all works together. It might be impossible to remove the cruft.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
45
91
The weird thing is, MS has had sufficient reason to do some serious house-cleaning in Windows for a decade or so (their attempts to go into the tablet/phone market for example), yet Windows is just as full of legacy stuff as it ever has been as you said. So many missed opportunities (netbooks for example as well), because (it seems to me anyway) that upper levels of management don't understand that you can either maintain legacy connections (which is really handy, being able to run a program from 20+ years ago on the latest version of Windows), or you can streamline the hell out of Windows and port it to all kinds of hardware platforms.

My alternate theory is that Microsoft would like to do streamline Windows for the reason I suggested, but Windows is so poorly maintained that Microsoft wouldn't know how to achieve this in any desirable time frame. My impression of Microsoft's products for at least twenty years is that when whatever software platform they've designed can't do what they need, they just plonk another one on top. Visual C libraries are an example of what I mean; why isn't there a single Visual C library that gets updated, and provided you have an up-to-date version it shouldn't matter whether you're running an app designed for the 2008 or 2021 libraries?
The problem is, 'legacy' is ultimately why people buy Windows... well, legacy and corporate management features. Every time they try a Windows RT or Windows 10 S or anything that doesn't have backwards compatibility with the big chaotic mess of Win32 x86 software (and driver compatibility for everything supported by x64 NT 6.x) out there, it's a complete flop.

They did do one huge, huge house-keeping step in 11, to be fair - killing 32-bit. That means that unless you are going to keep running 32-bit Windows in a VM of some sort or isolated from the public Internet, it's the end of the road for 16-bit/DOS applications in 2025. I'm sure there are some businesses out there for which this is a Big Deal.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
45
91
The alternative is running a VM for legacy compatibility. You may in fact get better backwards compatibility that way. It's not like running a copy of something Win2k or XP-like is a huge drain on resources on a modern system. 2kSP4 only requires 56MB RAM f.x. I doubt it'd even wake a modern CPU. What's more, with something like big.Little you'd have the efficiency cores to handle that.

I was totally surprised during lockdown in spring when my banker pulled up what looked like a custom DOS banking program running in VirtualBox!
Interestingly, Microsoft tried that approach with Windows XP Mode in Win7. I suspect it was fairly widely used, if only so that you could migrate your bare metal OS to 64-bit and keep running those pesky DOS/16-bit business applications. But... what happened to XP Mode after Win7?
 

mikeymikec

Lifer
May 19, 2011
15,045
5,220
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Interestingly, Microsoft tried that approach with Windows XP Mode in Win7. I suspect it was fairly widely used, if only so that you could migrate your bare metal OS to 64-bit and keep running those pesky DOS/16-bit business applications. But... what happened to XP Mode after Win7?
I was going to mention that :) XP Mode was given birth to in Win7 and AFAIK left to die immediately after birth. Really it had to go hand-in-hand with a serious overhaul of Windows libraries so you needed it to run legacy stuff.

The other issue was that it was only with Win7 Pro. Why?

I wonder how much time MS would save with one version of Windows for desktop. Why have multiple versions? Just make one edition suitable for all, or actually take the time to price a WIndows edition upgrade competitively and give it features to make it interesting. Instead MS wants to charge the same for Windows Pro as an upgrade as they do if you buy the OEM price.

Given how complex Windows has become, and how much housecleaning there has been done already, I doubt there is anyone left who actually knows how it all works together. It might be impossible to remove the cruft.
I can't remember what MS used to call the project, but they did have the idea at least ten years ago to start over. I bet they canned the project.

Re: Legacy - my point generally was that MS needs to defecate or get off the pot: choose to maintain legacy or not. To abandon legacy win32, a plan and a long transition period would be needed, but if people with their finger on the pulse know of the plan well in advance, then developers and end users can plan for it. I don't think it'll ever happen though, unless a Linux distro shows what can be done performance-wise on the desktop without all the legacy baggage.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
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91
I was going to mention that :) XP Mode was given birth to in Win7 and AFAIK left to die immediately after birth. Really it had to go hand-in-hand with a serious overhaul of Windows libraries so you needed it to run legacy stuff.

The other issue was that it was only with Win7 Pro. Why?

I wonder how much time MS would save with one version of Windows for desktop. Why have multiple versions? Just make one edition suitable for all, or actually take the time to price a WIndows edition upgrade competitively and give it features to make it interesting. Instead MS wants to charge the same for Windows Pro as an upgrade as they do if you buy the OEM price.
Why have multiple versions? So they can price discriminate. It lets the hardware manufacturers price discriminate too. To use Windows in any kind of businessy environment, you need Active Directory and that means Pro. So, unless you have a volume licence agreement that gives you access to Enterprise, either you buy real business laptops (e.g. ThinkPads and Latitudes) which habitually come preloaded with Pro, or you are spending $100/machine + all the hassle to buy a license on each machine through the Microsoft Store.

In fact, look at how they now have Windows 10 Pro "for workstations" with a couple high-end features that aren't available in regular Pro. They just introduced that a few years ago to squeeze more money from people with very fancy workstations. And if your workstation has more CPUs or cores or something, you pay even more.

And then they have Enterprise which has a bunch of exclusive features. Lots of stuff dealing with VPNs. Probably lots of other things. In Windows 10, they removed the ability to set wallpapers/logon screens/etc via group policy from Pro, so if you wanted, say, uniform corporate branding on your machines, you now need Enterprise. They are trying their best to make Pro less-than-fully-featured for OCD corporate IT departments in order to squeeze way more money beyond the Pro license Dell/Lenovo/HP already paid for. And to get Enterprise, from what I understand, it's effectively subscription licensing. Big $$$$$$$$$$$$$ from business customers.

This is how they make their money, not selling Acer and Dell a cheap bulk OEM Home license for some system that'll land on Worst Buy's shelves.
 

OlyAR15

Senior member
Oct 23, 2014
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The whole thing is a complete joke
No it's not. Makes sense to me. They are limiting what hardware they support for Win11. Doesn't mean that you can't run it on older machines, just that they won't support it, won't test compatibility for it, and if you run into issues, you are responsible for fixing it.

Same for lots of software. They have minimum hardware requirements. Doesn't mean that it won't run on lesser machines, just that they won't help you fix problems if you try. For example, D2R, which I'm playing at the moment, requires Win 10. Some people complained that it should support Win7. Now, some people have been able to run it on W7, so it is possible, but others had issues. Thing is, Blizzard will do nothing to help them: no tech support, no patches.

Same, I suspect, for MS. Sure, you can run W11 on machines that don't meet the requirements, but future patches and upgrades will not be tested for compatibility, so if something breaks, they wash their hands of it. I, for one, am fine with that. It means (hopefully) faster updates since they don't have to do so much compatibility testing, and better features going forward.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
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Re: Legacy - my point generally was that MS needs to defecate or get off the pot: choose to maintain legacy or not. To abandon legacy win32, a plan and a long transition period would be needed, but if people with their finger on the pulse know of the plan well in advance, then developers and end users can plan for it. I don't think it'll ever happen though, unless a Linux distro shows what can be done performance-wise on the desktop without all the legacy baggage.
Abandoning legacy Win32 would be suicide, regardless of any plan/transition period. Inertia works in Microsoft's favour - people keep running legacy things on Windows, developers make mild updates to their legacy Windows-based products, everybody is happy and keeps printing money.

If you tell people, say, "Windows will no longer support legacy Win32 applications on Jan. 1, 2032.", that means you've given everybody 11 years' notice to rethink everything. There is no reason that that rethinking will let to Microsoft's preferred replacement being chosen - the developers might just say "oh we have 10 years to make Photoshop and AutoCAD fully-web-based" or "you know what, our customers really like Macs, our Mac version is getting more and more popular, we'll only support macOS in 11 years." Microsoft is not in the position they were in 20 years ago - frankly, it's remarkable how little Win32/UWP/anything software is being written nowadays - most developers' chosen environment for new fancy business software and whatnot is the web (Chrome). And Windows is no better/worse for running Chrome than anything else.

If you want an example of this, look at Itanium. Intel thought they could push everybody into a big transition to a new platform without two decades of legacy junk, AMD came along with a kludge, now Itanium is dead and Intel was forced to adopt AMD's kludge which has basically given all the legacy junk two decades more life.

Honestly, abandoning legacy Win32 would be about as stupid as IBM launching mainframes that didn't have perfect compatibility with everything going back to System/360. The entire reason you buy an IBM mainframe for top dollar is because it runs your bank's decades-old mature stable code base. If IBM stops offering that and banks are forced to look at other options, there's a very good chance those other options will not be IBM.
 
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Insert_Nickname

Diamond Member
May 6, 2012
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Re: Legacy - my point generally was that MS needs to defecate or get off the pot: choose to maintain legacy or not. To abandon legacy win32, a plan and a long transition period would be needed, but if people with their finger on the pulse know of the plan well in advance, then developers and end users can plan for it. I don't think it'll ever happen though, unless a Linux distro shows what can be done performance-wise on the desktop without all the legacy baggage.
Abandoning legacy Win32 would be suicide, regardless of any plan/transition period. Inertia works in Microsoft's favour - people keep running legacy things on Windows, developers make mild updates to their legacy Windows-based products, everybody is happy and keeps printing money.

...

Honestly, abandoning legacy Win32 would be about as stupid as IBM launching mainframes that didn't have perfect compatibility with everything going back to System/360. The entire reason you buy an IBM mainframe for top dollar is because it runs your bank's decades-old mature stable code base. If IBM stops offering that and banks are forced to look at other options, there's a very good chance those other options will not be IBM.
The whole point of running Windows is that legacy compatibility. Otherwise, you may as well run anything else. MacOS, Linux, BSD. Doesn't matter, so long as it can run a browser.

I think the reason XPmode was dropped was because XP itself went out of support. It was a full version after all, so when exposed to the internet it had the same security issues as the regular bare metal version.

I still think the idea itself is sound, but it would need some watertight shutters from the rest of the system. You can actually get better compatibility with WINE for really ancient Windows versions, then running newer Windows themselves. F.x. now they're removing the x86 version, which also means removing NTVDM. So you can kiss 16bit app support goodbye come 2025.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
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Well, my first gen i3 is being offered today's cumulative update. That is an encouraging sign...
 

mikeymikec

Lifer
May 19, 2011
15,045
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@VivienM

Itanium also sucked :) The first implementation of AMD64 did not. To make my 'legacy or not' point even more clear, I'm not saying that ditching legacy is a great idea, I'm saying that it seems to me that MS can't make their minds up what they want to do, and it looks like they're trying to go in two incompatible directions simultaneously.

They would also need to decide for themselves what 'giving up legacy' means for them. If it truly was the old hardware that was the problem, then surely just yanking driver support would do the trick; it's not like many big-name hardware manufacturers support say graphics hardware that's older than a few years; my R9 380X may get a single Win11 update, it may not. Intel spend even less time with their graphics drivers. I can't remember what nvidia are like in this respect.

I just checked and my graphics card isn't showing any Win11 updates on the AMD site yet.

@OlyAR15 but what does Microsoft "supporting" hardware X mean anyway? When has there ever been an 'old CPU' problem on Windows aside from the hard limit in Win8.1? IMO the only code that MS has gone by historically is that if their updates broke functionality for a popular enough piece of hardware, then they're interested.
 

VivienM

Senior member
Jun 26, 2001
486
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They would also need to decide for themselves what 'giving up legacy' means for them. If it truly was the old hardware that was the problem, then surely just yanking driver support would do the trick; it's not like many big-name hardware manufacturers support say graphics hardware that's older than a few years; my R9 380X may get a single Win11 update, it may not. Intel spend even less time with their graphics drivers. I can't remember what nvidia are like in this respect.

I just checked and my graphics card isn't showing any Win11 updates on the AMD site yet.
The GPU manufacturers tend to be quite good at supporting their products with drivers for a long time, in part, I think, because they understand the importance of the used market. People are more likely to buy expensive 3080/3090-class GPUs if those GPUs can be sold at high prices two or three years later. And if NVIDIA was like "oh, no drivers for 4-year-old GPUs", that would totally destroy the value of 4-year-old high end cards and therefore slow down the upgrade cycle.

Same with printer manufacturers - they want you to keep using their printer and buying the toner/ink cartridges rather than go and buy a new printer from someone else.
 
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