Windows 11 in corporate use: Not much will change for IT

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When Microsoft first introduced Windows 11, it was all about bringing out everything new. The subsequent presentation on use in companies had a completely different focus. The main concern here was to take away the fear of an upgrade from the IT departments. Whenever a major release changes, in this case from Windows 10 to Windows 11, customers tend to wait and see. Even if, according to Microsoft, Windows 10 now has 1.3 billion users a month, there are still companies that are still in the middle of the update process or have not even started it.

That has fatal consequences. The work PCs are perceived as backward. Modernizing the user experience is important for Microsoft so that employees enjoy working with their PC. Job satisfaction, recruiting and long-term loyalty can only be achieved if the working conditions are right.

In the presentation of Windows 11 Microsoft highlighted two areas: If you pull a laptop out of the dock or disconnect it from the external monitor, Windows 11 remembers the arrangement of the windows and the snap groups and can restore them the next time it is docked. In addition, you should be able to share in video conferences in Windows 11 application windows directly from the Windows taskbar.

Little or nothing changes for IT administrators if they already have cloud management tools such as Microsoft Endpoint Manager. Windows 11 is built on the same basis as Windows 10. The installation is comparable to a feature update. In the fall, Microsoft will release Windows 10 21H2 with Universal Print and Autopilot improvements, so you don’t have to upgrade to Windows 11 right away. Microsoft did not want to answer whether this was the last feature update. That will depend largely on how Windows 11 is received. In any case, Windows 10 will continue to be provided with bug fixes for years to come.

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Windows 10 and Windows 11 can be used in parallel in the same management environment. Microsoft therefore recommends customers to start testing the Insider Builds of Windows 11 now, which should be available next week. You should start on a new version of Windows 10 if possible. Windows 11 can already be installed with version 1909 and newer.

The final availability date of the full release is still unknown. Microsoft spoke of “this holiday” in the first session and meant the Christmas season, in the second session on corporate use it was called “this fall” this fall.

Nothing seems to be changing in terms of licensing. Anyone who now has volume licenses for Windows Enterprise E3 or E5 or the corresponding Microsoft 365 and Edu licenses can roll out Windows 11 seamlessly. As for Windows 10, Microsoft makes a compatibility promise: If apps that you have written yourself don’t work, Microsoft will help free of charge with its own developers as part of the App Assure program.

With Windows 11, Microsoft is now also changing the update frequency: In future, there will only be one update per year that will be supported for 24 months (Home and Pro) or 36 months. Microsoft is upgrading the Endpoint Manager with an analysis function that checks in advance which devices are Windows 11-compatible.

Microsoft sent the analysts and press representatives present home with three points: Windows 11 is the operating system for hybrid use, i.e. alternately in the company and at home, Windows 11 increases security from the chip to the cloud, and companies should please start now To test Windows 11.

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