No doubt we all recall Microsoft’s now infamous announcement that Windows 10 would be the last Windows version. How then did we end up with Windows 11? The decision to release Windows 11 was a huge backflip by Microsoft and obviously, something happened to cause that radical change in direction. Read on to find out what.
The Windows 10X Project
In 2019 Microsoft announced a new project labeled Windows 10X. Microsoft never released much in the way of definitive information regarding this new operating system but it was known to be a slimmer (cut-down) version of Windows designed specifically to run on inexpensive hardware. Then, in May 2020 Microsoft announced that Windows 10X would be cloud-focused.
All this led many industry pundits to the conclusion that Windows 10X, with its slimmer design and cloud focus, was being developed specifically to challenge Chrome OS, targeting schools where Chromebooks are very popular. Some 12 months later, in May 2021, Microsoft announced that the Windows 10X project had been abandoned and the slimmed-down operating system would never be released.
Now, by this time, over a period of two years, Microsoft had invested millions of dollars in developing Windows 10X and, as is the case with any public company, its executives are answerable to the shareholders. So, Microsoft is now in a position where it needs to justify all that expenditure – enter Windows 11.
The Birth Of Windows 11
It’s no secret that many of the UI elements developed for Windows 10X were ported directly over to Windows 11 – prime examples are the Taskbar and Start Menu.
(Leaked Windows 10X Start Menu)
When Windows 11 was first released it drew a lot of criticism over missing features and options and I’ve always maintained that Windows 11 was released as a work in progress. If you think about it, a new desktop operating system essentially based on a slimmed-down version of Windows was always going to need a lot of work to bring it up to scratch.
So, in my opinion, Microsoft’s about-face on releasing a new Windows version came about as a direct consequence of the company’s decision to abandon the Windows 10X project and the need to justify all that expenditure.
In a nutshell, Windows 10X became Windows 11.
Will There Be A Windows 12?
I believe a Windows 12 is near enough to inevitable. There is little doubt that Windows 11 was released in an under-developed state and, while development for that operating system is ongoing, first impressions are lasting impressions. I firmly believe that a Windows 12 release is essential for Microsoft to regain some semblance of credibility and Windows 12 will eventually come to be known as, what Windows 11 should have been.
Much of the above is theoretical but, logically, the facts fit. Personally, I have little doubt that Windows 11 came about as a direct consequence of Microsoft’s dire need to justify all that wasted expenditure spent developing a subsequently abandoned project.
What are your thoughts?
16 thoughts on “Why A Windows 11 Was Released – The Truth!”
Despite all the press that it got making it SEEM like an official announcement, Microsoft (the company) never said Windows 10 would be the last version of Windows. In reality, it was a statement made by a single person who Microsoft never bothered to clearly refute. I wrote about it here some time ago: https://askleo.com/did-microsoft-lie/. Even if not a lie, it didn’t really look that good when 11’s time came. Note no one has said anything similar about Windows 11, so I too expect Windows 12. The really interesting thing is after that will Microsoft throw superstition to the wind and embrace … Windows 13? 🙂
Agreed Leo. However, as the above article explains, I believe that Microsoft was forced into releasing a Windows 11, perhaps prematurely, due to the company’s own poor decisions. The sudden announcement of a Windows 11, seemingly out of the blue, only lends credence to that theory.
A Windows 13? I think not. 🙂
Hello Jim. Windows XP was the longest running of all. Seems a new number except for 9 (which was bypassed) and Vista (which only lasted for 5 years), is about 10 years (from what I was able to find). Only time will tell if 11 lasts 10 years , Mindblower!
I feel part of the issue is MS always seems to be playing catch-up these days.
Windows phone was a failure. Windows 11 finally has a tabbed explorer which has been a request for years and one which I believe Mac OS and others have had for a while.
I really feel like MS needs to listen more to its customers which they have improved on but could be better. I also think they need to be ahead for once
Great comments Peter, and I agree 100%.
If there was a windows 10x that was converted over to Windows 11, why all the hardware restrictions? I have two machines, custom built with Intel series 7 chips that are both one number behind the cut off. Both are less than 5 years old, 32gig 1 TB SSDs. The CPU is the only incompatibility. Why should I have to give p these machines that are working fine? I can boot leg Windows 11 but that defeats my purposes for these machines. Yes I could buy a newer generation I7 chip for about $500 each, but why? Everything else is fine.
why all the hardware restrictions?
That’s an excellent question Vincent. It has nothing to do with the hardware’s ability to run Windows 11 and everything to do with the new TPM protocol. TPM is only supported by relatively new hardware and associated firmware. If TPM was not a mandatory requirement, Windows 11 could be installed legitimately on any machine with hardware capable of running it.
I have windows 10 now all updated. I use Classic Shell to make it more like windows 7 did.
Is it worth it to update to 11 and will Classic Shell also make it like windows 7?
Is it worth it to update to 11
It all depends. Personally, I don’t believe that Win 11 offers improvements over Win 10. That said, if longevity is the main aim, upgrading to Windows 11 will extend the lifespan of the operating system well beyond October 2025, which is Windows 10’s end-of-support date. If it’s an old machine and likely to be replaced by (or before) October 2025, I probably wouldn’t bother. However, if it’s a fairly new machine, I would suggest considering upgrading to Win 11.
will Classic Shell also make it like windows 7
Classic Shell hasn’t been under active development since 2017. Development has since been taken over by a new team and it is now called Open-Shell. However, Windows 11 is not listed as a supported operating system by Open-Shell: https://github.com/Open-Shell/Open-Shell-Menu
So, it would be down to a matter of try it and see. However, I think it’s unlikely that it will work in Windows 11.
UPDATE: My colleague John Durso has informed that an Open-Shell pre-release version (4.4.189) that supports Windows 11 is now available. However, please note that this is a pre-release and, as such, not guaranteed to be bug free: https://github.com/Open-Shell/Open-Shell-Menu/releases
StartAllBack is similar and specifically designed for Windows 11. It costs a minimal amount of money but, if it does what you want, well worth the small outlay: https://www.startallback.com/
Hope that helps.
I have been using the open shell menu for several months on Windows 11 with no problems. Below is the link I used to download the copy, Mindblower! https://github.com/Open-Shell/Open-Shell-Menu
Thanks for that info MB, appreciated.
I just wish Windows 11 didn’t look so much like MacOS and everything thing takes more clicks to do a simple task. If you’re a power user they buried all those features. Looks like they copied the walled garden concept of MacOS. But it could be just like Jim stated it was meant for Chromebook type computers and then pushed out for modern computers. My big thing is if I wanted a Mac look and feel I’d buy a Mac.
Jim, I thought you might like to know that I ACCIDENTALLY tried to share this article with some folks on Fascist Book, and WOW they didn’t bark at your site. Maybe the ban is lifted!
Yes, we’ve been successfully posting links on Facebook for a few days now and it does appear that the ban has been lifted.
Our Marc Thomas has compiled an article on the subject but we’ve been holding off publishing the news until we’re 100% sure it sticks and the ban isn’t reinstated for some reason.
I guess it’s time to spread the good news. 🙂
It certainly seems these days as if the rush to market is the most important aspect for software and hardware. “We have to have Windows 11 out now! The new Chrome OS is due next week, and if we can’t beat that, people will migrate over!”
“But all these features still need work, there are massive bugs–”
“I don’t care! It releases Friday!”
PC users are now basically beta testers.
Spot on, especially regarding Widows 11. It was released prematurely as a work in progress and the users are the guinea pigs.