Windows 11: What to know if you’re unsure about upgrading

Windows 11 update on a laptop

Do it’s important to improve from Home windows 10 to Home windows 11? Here is what to know.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Windows 11 will start to roll out to eligible devices today, marking the unofficial sundown for Home windows 10. The gradual rollout means not each Home windows 10 machine will have the ability to improve on day one. Because of this, you will have a while to determine while you’re able to make the soar. Notice that Microsoft has introduced that Home windows 10 help will finish in 2025. So what does that replace appear like, and do you really want it?

In case you’re questioning how lengthy you really need to make the change to Home windows 11 and the way lengthy you’ll be able to safely wait earlier than updating, you have come to the best place. I am going to additionally clarify tips on how to obtain Home windows 11, tips on how to inform whether or not your laptop is suitable and who will get the replace totally free. Learn on for all the things it is advisable to know concerning the finish of Home windows 10 help and prepping for Home windows 11. 

Learn extra: Windows 11: What to know about the beta download, new features, device compatibility, price and more

When is Microsoft ending help for Home windows 10, and why?

Support for Windows 10 will finish on Oct. 14, 2025. Which means Microsoft will not present safety patches or characteristic updates for the House, Professional, Enterprise, Professional Training and Professional for Workstations editions presently — affecting nearly all Home windows 10 customers. (The one individuals who have till 2029 are the few Home windows 10 Enterprise Lengthy Time period Assist Channel customers.) 

This does not come as a shock: Microsoft has a long-established Fixed Lifestyle Policy for a lot of of its merchandise. For every model of its OS, the corporate affords a minimal of 10 years of help (at the least 5 years of mainstream help like safety updates and no-charge incident help, adopted by 5 years of prolonged help like paid troubleshooting). 

Home windows 10 was launched in July 2015, so its 10-year life cycle could have come to an in depth by October 2025. (Here is everything you need to know about the end of Windows 10 support.)


Home windows 10’s days are numbered.

Josh Goldman/CNET

Do I’ve to make the change to Home windows 11? Will my Home windows 10 laptop cease working after Microsoft pulls help? 

Nope. You will nonetheless have the ability to use your Home windows 10 laptop the identical approach you will have been — identical to lots of people are nonetheless utilizing Windows 7 or Home windows 8, although Microsoft pulled help for each of these lately. Nonetheless, as soon as help ends, you will not get any safety updates, which may depart your laptop weak — many types of malware target Windows devices

In case you do not wish to cease utilizing your Home windows 10 machine after help ends in 2025, there are specific steps you can take to better secure it

Will my laptop have the ability to run Home windows 11? 

It relies upon. In case you buy a new PC between now and the general release, that laptop will have the ability to run Home windows 11. To see in case your present Home windows 10 PC is eligible for the free improve to Home windows 11, go to Microsoft’s website for a listing of necessities. 

Initially, Microsoft was directing folks to download the PC Health Check app to test if their machines had been suitable. Nonetheless, many customers reported that it didn’t give sufficient quantities of element as to why a tool was not suitable. On June 28, a Microsoft weblog put up stated the corporate was “temporarily removing the app” to handle this concern, and that the device would return earlier than the autumn Home windows 11 launch, though it appears to have reappeared simply earlier than the Home windows 11 launch. Alternatively, you should use one other open-source app referred to as WhyNotWin11 to see in case your machine is suitable. Plus, here is tips on how to check some hardware compatibility with Windows 11 with out both device.

How do I improve from Home windows 10 to Home windows 11? How a lot will it price me?

In case you’re already a Home windows 10 consumer and have a suitable laptop, Home windows 11 will seem as a free upgrade for your machine as soon as it turns into typically obtainable, likely in October. (You too can obtain a beta model now if you would like to strive it out early, however we solely advocate doing so when you have a second tester machine, since it’ll probably be buggy.)

As soon as Home windows 11 turns into typically obtainable, you will obtain it the identical approach you’d any new model of Home windows. Most customers will go to Settings > Replace & Safety > Home windows Replace and click on Verify for Updates. If obtainable, you will see Characteristic replace to Home windows 11. Click on Download and set up. (Here is extra info on how to download Windows 11. If you have not but upgraded to Home windows 10, you should still have the ability to download Windows 10 free, too — here’s how.) 


Home windows 11 features a new interface and plenty of new options.


What is the distinction between Home windows 10 and Home windows 11, anyway? 

Home windows 11 features a new design and several other new options in comparison with Home windows 10 that intention to make navigating your laptop simpler, whether or not you are utilizing it for private use, work or each. Listed here are a few of the largest modifications in Home windows 11:

  • A brand new, extra Mac-like interface: Home windows 11 includes a clear design with rounded corners, pastel shades and a centered Start menu and Taskbar. 
  • Built-in Android apps: Android apps will be coming to Windows 11 and installable from inside the new Microsoft Store through the Amazon Appstore. (There have been a few methods to entry Android apps on Home windows 10, together with if you had a Samsung Galaxy phone, however this may make it native.) 
  • Microsoft Groups integration: Teams is getting a face-lift and shall be built-in immediately into the Home windows 11 Taskbar, making it simpler to entry (and a bit extra like Apple’s FaceTime). You’ll entry Groups from Home windows, Mac, Android or iOS. 
  • Higher digital desktop help: Home windows 11 will allow you to set up virtual desktops in a approach that is extra just like MacOS, toggling between a number of desktops for private, work, college or gaming use. 
  • Simpler transition from monitor to laptop computer, and higher multitasking: The brand new OS consists of options referred to as Snap Groups and Snap Layouts — collections of the apps you are utilizing directly that sit within the Taskbar, and may come up or be minimized on the identical time for simpler activity switching. Additionally they allow you to plug and unplug from a monitor extra simply with out shedding the place your open home windows are situated. 
  • Widgets: Whereas they have been round for some time (keep in mind desktop devices on Home windows Vista?), together with in a recent Windows 10 update, now you can access widgets directly from the Taskbar and personalize them to see no matter you want. 
  • Xbox tech for higher gaming: Windows 11 will get certain features found in Xbox consoles, like Auto HDR and DirectStorage, to enhance gaming in your Home windows PC. 

We broke down all of the biggest differences between Windows 10 and Windows 11 right here. We have additionally acquired a information on all of the best new Windows 11 features, and the way you will use them.

For extra particulars, take a look at every feature we wanted in Windows 11 but didn’t get and how to use Android apps on Windows 10 right now | Home windows 11: What to know should you’re not sure about upgrading


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