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While leaked last week, Microsoft has officially announced their new operating system which is scheduled to be released later this year. So what does Windows 11 mean for Not for Profits? Here’s my review so far.

Windows 11 screen

First, the good thing about Windows 11 is that it was built on the back of Windows 10. This means the underlying technology is already known and therefore will likely be less “buggy” than when they fully upgraded from Windows 7/8 a few years ago.

Many of the promoted features of this new operating model are aimed at the user rather than business license holders such as a new user interface. However, there are also some additional benefits for your organisation too including:

  • Tighter integrations and increased functionality for MS Teams;
  • Increased security such as added encryption and malware protection; and
  • Faster and smaller software upgrades.

The new operating model is also promoted to be more open to 3rd party applications including those designed originally for Android. Whether or not this will also open the door to developers to create more plug-ins for other Microsoft products such as Dynamics is still to be confirmed.

Windows 11 Upgrade Requirements for Devices

While the upgrade from Windows 10 will be free, there could be issues for Not for Profits that are using old devices. The minimum system requirements for Windows 11 include:

  • 1 gigahertz+ with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor
  • 4 GB or more of RAM
  • 64 GM or larger storage device

Any device bought or leased in the last two years is probably okay, but older ones may have issues. Your IT manager can download the Microsoft PC Health Check app to see if your PCs and laptops are compatible here.

Wait!

As with any major change that’s not a major security update, I recommend waiting for larger organisations to full test Windows 11 before most Not for Profits upgrade their systems. This gives your other providers time to update their own apps, and for Microsoft to work through any programming bugs with the beta testers that have greater resources.

P.S. If your devices are still on Windows 7 or 8, make the upgrade now. Your IT manager can still find the free upgrade to Windows 10 using a Google search.

Tammy Ven Dange is a former charity CEO, Not for Profit Board Member and IT Executive. Today she helps NFPs with IT decisions.

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