Microsoft’s problem child, Windows 11, is here. Run (y/n)?

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Microsoft has launched a new operating system today, but whether you’ll be able to run it is open to question. As is if you’ll want to run it.

The Redmond-based Windows flinger has a problematic history with Windows releases. The century opened with Windows XP, shipped in 2001, which seemed OK. Then came Vista, in 2007, which was not. Then Windows 7 turned up in ‘09 to undo the Vista badness. And yeah, the users were happy. Right up until the monstrosity of Windows 8 was released (only partially rectified in Windows 8.1).

As of yesterday there was Windows 10, which has evolved into a pretty good platform over the years.

The pattern is clear. For every decent release there must be a duffer. And Windows 11 is not on the right side of things.

Windows Insiders have had a copy of the operating system to play with for a while and although some of the GUI decisions might cause the bile of the faithful to rise (new Start Menu, anyone?) the change from 10 to 11 is nowhere near as painfully loud as the clanger Microsoft dropped with Windows 8.

However, all is not well in the world of Windows, despite the relentlessly perky expulsions from Microsoft’s social media orifices.

FTW tech response that puts high-performance gaming front and center. 🎮💚 — Microsoft (@Microsoft) October 1, 2021

We fear that some gamers might disagree. PC Gamer put the OS through its paces (in pre-release form) and found a drop in average frame rate of up to 28 per cent thanks to the enablement of Virtualization-Based Security (VBS) on new kit. VBS should improve security (and is an option in Windows 10) but the penalty for gamers already forced to buy new hardware might be too much to bear.

What great timing as world+dog struggles to source components

It is difficult to discuss Windows 11 without addressing the silicon elephant in the corner: Microsoft’s OEM-delighting decision to keep the hardware upgrade gravy train rolling just a little longer by taking an axe to Intel Core CPUs prior to the eighth generation (unless it happens to be a seventh-generation CPU that Microsoft uses in its own kit).

Another of the company’s orifices attempted to clarify the hardware requirements, which look at first sight to be minimal. 4GB of RAM and 1GHz CPU? What is all the fuss about?

There are 2! 2 days until the #Windows11 release.

Your PC will need a minimum of

Ah! Ah! Ah!

All basic requirements: https://t.co/nCdMBlZp9h pic.twitter.com/zgkuq3NKqz — Microsoft Support (@MicrosoftHelps) October 3, 2021

Sadly, while TPM version 2.0 was listed, a key fact was omitted. A PC using Intel silicon from a family dating back four or more years probably wouldn’t work for reasons of reliability, security or compatibility.

A worthy argument, but this was slightly undermined when Microsoft hurriedly added the Surface Studio 2’s Intel Core i7-7820HQ as well as an all-too-short list of other older Intel silicon.

Testy testers

And then there is the shoddy treatment dispensed to the company’s loyal band of Windows Insiders. First through the hardware compatibility list and then with the company’s maybe-maybe-not approach to virtual machines (VMs) – upon which many testers place the company’s wares for validation. Having initially said VMs would not be subject to the same requirements, the company performed a reverse-ferret in its Dev Channel and said actually they were.

A cynic might wonder if it is payback for not shouting quite loudly enough prior to the company unleashing the file-munching Windows 10 October 2018 update.

And so it is into this furore that Windows 11 has emerged, its rounded corners satisfying fans who looked longingly at their Mac-owning chums’ desktops while going strangely quiet about legacy hardware support and having to choke down some of the stranger user interface decisions (the trimming of the context menus and shunting of the Copy option to an icon springs effortlessly to mind).

The minimum hardware requirements represent an own-goal of impressive proportions, particularly when Windows 10 will continue to be supported for another five years, and Windows 11 was demonstrated running quite happily on non-sanctioned kit

Sure, not all of the promised toys have turned up (Android support) but over-promising and under-delivering have long been a thing where Windows is concerned. After all, Windows Insiders are unlikely to have forgotten the much-trumpeted and quietly culled “Sets” feature of Windows 10, nor the big dreams and grim reality of the Windows Insider programme itself as Microsoft struggled to decide how to test its Windows platform (before opting to, well, kind of not do it at all).

A slew of broken patches, and administration pain has accompanied the Windows platform while Microsoft appears to have remained deaf to the cries of anguish. You didn’t really want to print anything anyway, did you? Look at those rounded corners in the new version!

There are some positives – this could have all been so different

It’s a shame, because under the hood there are things to like. Windows 11 is subjectively snappier than Windows 10 (in our opinion) despite the updated GUI being mostly lipstick applied to the porker.

The changes to the Start Menu and Taskbar might annoy some (as well as a perceived shedding of power-user features, but won’t overly bother others, and for most just require a bit of retrained muscle memory. Some features, such as the Windows Subsystem for Linux, can already be found in Windows 10, while others – Android app support, for example – have slipped quietly into the future. But they are on the way, according to Microsoft.

However, the infamously appalling communication skills of the Windows machine could well have put paid to a warm reception for Windows 11 from any but the company’s most ardent apologists… and the sellers of new laptops.

The minimum hardware requirements represent an own-goal of impressive proportions, particularly when Windows 10 will continue to be supported for another five years, and Windows 11 was demonstrated running quite happily on non-sanctioned kit. There is a certain irony that only one of this hack’s Intel-based Windows 10 PCs will accept it without tinkering, while an M1 Mac running Parallels Desktop 17.0.1 appears to have no such difficulty.

Unlike certain other vendors of locked-in ecosystems, Microsoft used to be about letting their users choose their own kit.

No more, it seems.

Despite a Microsoft drone insisting the OS was “Available on the Widest Array of Choice in Devices,” the experience of users tells a different tale. And forcing users to ditch perfectly serviceable kit in order to run Windows 11 does not sit well with Microsoft’s professed eco-warrior credentials or the wallets of customers faced with the requirement for new hardware amid an IC shortage.

Windows 11 is here. Perhaps it is time to consider the alternatives. ®

Kelra shines as OMEGA takes down Bren

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Photo from MPL Philippines

By REYNALD MAGALLON

Duane “Kelra” Pillas displayed his deadly form as he powered Omega Esports to a crucial 2-0 sweep of Bren Esports in the MPL Philippines Season 8 on Sunday, Oct.3

Kelra put up a near-flawless performance as he utilized his signature heroes in the two-game domination over the M2 World Champions. The Omega gold laner was solid on his Alice in Game 1 finishing with a 5-0-7 KDA before following it up with an equally impressive Aldous in Game 2 with a 9-1-3 KDA.

The sweep rewarded Omega with full three points which allowed the MSC champions to leapfrog Bren and Nexplay Evos and finish at the fifth spot of the standing with 16 points on a 4-7 win-loss card after week 6.

With a chance to move up the standing, Omega quickly showed its form in Game 1 as it dominated Bren with a swift 16-6 victory. The last season’s runners-up banked on Joshua “Ch4knu” Mangilog’s playmaking on his Jawhead to outplay the Bren in the early clashes in the series opener.

Ch4knu contributed eight assists, two kills against two deaths while Christian “Raizen” Sumagui on his Lancelot shone on his second straight match as Omega’s jungler finishing with 5-1-5 KDA to help his team end Game 1 in just 12 minutes.

There was no let up for Omega in Game 2 as it closed out the match with an 18-10 tally. Despite some early resistance from Bren, Omega easily cruised its way to victory as Kelra’s Aldous, after reaching its power spike, went on to dominate every clash.

Ch4knu, on his Grock, also provided the perfect initiation for his team, none bigger than the last one at the 19-minute mark during their final push. He hit three heroes from Bren with his Wild Charge which eventually allowed his teammates to tower lock and end the game in 20 minutes.

Ch4knu finished with 12 assists and a kill against a death for a stellar performance.

With the loss, Bren fell to the seventh spot with 14 points to show on its 5-7 record.

What’s New in Debian 11 “Bullseye”?

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Debian is a preferred choice of millions of Linux users for some of the most popular and powerful operating systems, like Ubuntu and its derivatives are based on Debian.

Debian 11 has finally been released, finally, after a long development work of two years. Bullseye – that’s the name given to this latest Debian Linux distro. So what are the updates and upgrades? In this article, let’s check out what’s new in Debian 11.

Debian 11’s Architecture

Debian supports a good range of hardware architectures.

Supported Architectures

ARM EABI (armel) ARMv7 (EABI hard-float ABI and armhf) 64-bit ARM (arm64) 32-bit PC (i386) 64-bit PC (amd64) Little-endian MIPS (mipsel) 64-bit little-endian PowerPC 64-bit little-endian MIPS IBM System z (s390x)

Not Supported Hardware

Old MIPS 32-bit CPUs

Linux Kernel Information

Debian 11 supports the Linux Kernel 5.10 LTS. Debian 10 Buster, the earlier version to Debian 11, used Linux Kernel 4.19 while released. A newer kernel means a new set of bug fixes, new hardware support, and improved performance.

This is the perfect kernel for Debian bullseye considering the Debian lifecycle.

Supports exFAT

exFAT is the shortened form of the Extensible File Allocation Table. It’s a filesystem used for flash memory, such as SD cards and USB flash drives.

Now Debian 11 provides support for the exFAT. For mounting the exFAT filesystem, you don’t need the filesystem-in-userspace implementation provided by the exfat-fuse package additionally anymore. Thanks to kernel 5.10! exFAT comes in handy with it. Tools for checking and creating an exFAT are given in the exfatprogs package.

Bauhaus Movement Inspired Theme & Wallpaper

Debian features cool wallpapers and a default theme for each of the major releases. Debian 11’s theme is inspired by the Bauhaus movement. Bauhaus means “building house” and it was an art and design movement from 20th century Germany. The Bauhaus movement revolved around abstract, geometric style featuring little emotion or sentiments.

Its modern aesthetic still is immensely influential for designers, architects, and artists. You can see this theme all through Debian 11 whether it’s the installer, login window, or the Grub menu.

Newer Desktop Environment Versions

Debian 11 offers newer desktop environment versions. Desktop flavors you get here are, KDE Plasma 5.20, GNOME 3.38, LXDE 11, LXQt 0.16, Xfce 4.16, and MATE 1.24. Debian prefers stability and it’s quite clear from the desktop environments. You might not get the latest cutting-edge distributions like Fedora or Arch/Manjaro.

Updated Packages

Debian 11 consists of more than 11,294 new packages out of 59,551 packages. It also reduced over 9,519 “obsolete” packages and removed 42,821 that were updated. A total of 5,434 packages remained as they were.

A good number of software applications and package updates are included in Debian bullseye, such as Apache 2.4.48, Calligra 3.2, Emacs 27.1, LibreOffice 7.0, Inkscape 1.0.2, Linux kernel 5.10 series, Perl 5.32, PHP 7.4, Vim 8.2, PostgreSQL 13, and the list goes on. All these ready-to-use software packages are built with over 30,000 source packages.

With this huge selection of packages and wide architecture support, Debian has always stayed committed to its aim of being The Universal Operating System.

Improved Printer and Scanner Features

Debian 11 presents a new ipp-usb package. It is built with a vendor-neutral IPP-over-USB protocol that is supported by many latest printers. So, many modern-day printers will be supported now by Debian. And you won’t need the drivers for that.

SANE driverless backend lets you use scanners without any trouble.

Endnotes

Want to try Debian Bullseye? Get it from here. You can also check “bullseye” with Live Images without installing it on your PC. This will load and run the entire OS in read-only mode. These live images are available for the i386 and amd64 architectures in the form of USB sticks, DVDs, and netboot setups. Debian Live has a standard image. So you can try a basic Debian without any GUIs.

And that’s the ending of this article. Hope you find our Debian 11 guide helpful.