With the release of Windows 11, Microsoft is taking the opportunity to prune Windows 10 of some features that were not used or are not applicable with the new OS. Starting this fall when the OS is released, the company is cutting several features that IT Pros will likely need to educate or be aware of, before migrating users.
On the positive side of the cutting floor, Cortana has been removed from the setup experience. No more Cortana screaming at you about signing in or adding WiFi during the setup process. News and Interests, which was a late addition to Windows 10 is also going away, some may see this as a positive, but it is being replaced by widgets in Windows 11.
On the other side of the coin, Windows 10 S mode will only be available in the Home edition of Windows 11. Meaning, if you were using S functionality, with Windows 11, that’s no longer an option in a corporate environment.
Windows 11 will introduce a new Start menu which means big changes are coming to your old content in your Windows 10 Start menu. Microsoft says that named groups and folders of apps are no longer supported and the layout is not currently resizable and pinned apps and sites will not migrate.
It’s the second point of depreciation that is important: if you have users who only know how to get to a site via it being pinned, time to move to browser bookmarks.
For the taskbar, if you have any users that place the taskbar on the side or at the top of the screen, that functionality is going away. Moving forward, you can put the taskbar anywhere you want as long as it’s at the bottom of the screen.
For everything else to make sure it won’t impact your users when upgrade, you can find the entire list of items not moving to Windows 10 below.
Cortana will no longer be included in the first boot experience or pinned to the Taskbar.
Desktop wallpaper cannot be roamed to or from device when signed in with a Microsoft account.
Internet Explorer is disabled. Microsoft Edge is the recommended replacement and includes IE Mode which may be useful in certain scenarios.
Math Input Panel is removed. Math Recognizer will install on demand and includes the math input control and recognizer. Math inking in apps like OneNote are not impacted by this change.
News & Interests has evolved. New functionality has been added which can be found by clicking the Widgets icon on the Taskbar.
Quick Status from the Lockscreen and associated settings are removed.
S Mode is only available now for Windows 11 Home edition.
Snipping Tool continues to be available but the old design and functionality in the Windows 10 version has been replaced with those of the app previously known as Snip & Sketch.
Start is significantly changed in Windows 11 including the following key deprecations and removals:
Named groups and folders of apps are no longer supported and the layout is not currently resizable.
Pinned apps and sites will not migrate when upgrading from Windows 10.
Live Tiles are no longer available. For glanceable, dynamic content, see the new Widgets feature.
Tablet Mode is removed and new functionality and capability is included for keyboard attach and detach postures.
Taskbar functionality is changed including:
People is no longer present on the Taskbar.
Some icons may no longer appear in the System Tray (systray) for upgraded devices including previous customizations.
Alignment to the bottom of the screen is the only location allowed.
Apps can no longer customize areas of the Taskbar.
Timeline is removed. Some similar functionality is available in Microsoft Edge.
Touch Keyboard will no longer dock and undock keyboard layouts on screen sizes 18 inches and larger.
Wallet is removed.
The following apps will not be removed on upgrade but will no longer be installed on new devices or when clean-installing Windows 11. They are available for download from the Store:
OneNote for Windows 10
If you are wondering why Microsoft is removing Skype from Windows 11, that’s because they are going to bake Teams into the OS experience. This means that everyone who is using Windows 11 Home, will also now be using Teams.