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Evolution of Microsoft Windows from Windows 1 to Windows 11

Microsoft Windows is the most popular operating system for personal computers, with a market share of over 90%. It was first released in 1985 and has since evolved through various versions, including Windows 1.0, Windows 95, Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, and the latest version, Windows 11.

Evolution of Microsoft Windows From Windows 1 – 11

Windows 1.0 was launched in 1985 as a GUI extension of Microsoft’s existing disk operating system. The subsequent versions of Windows added features like program managers, file managers, dynamic interfaces, and print managers. Windows NT was a high-powered version of Windows that was aimed at business users, while Windows for Workgroups was designed for networking capabilities. Windows 95 was a major release that included integrated web support, including the Internet Explorer browser and the World Wide Web.

Windows XP – Windows Vista

Windows Vista, released in 2006, was highly anticipated but received a mixed reception. It included a new graphical user interface and added features such as Aero Glass visual effects and improved security measures. However, it also had compatibility issues with some software and hardware, and many users found it to be slower and more resource-intensive than its predecessor, Windows XP. Despite receiving several updates, Windows Vista was eventually overshadowed by the release of Windows 7 in 2009.

Windows 7 – Windows 8

Windows 8 actually introduced the tile-based Start screen, which replaced the traditional Start menu. It was a major departure from the previous versions of Windows and was optimized for touchscreen devices. However, it received mixed reviews from users and critics, who found it confusing and difficult to use on traditional desktop and laptop computers. Windows 8.1 was later released as a free update to address some of the user feedback and bring back some of the familiar features, including the Start button.

Windows 10

In 2015, Microsoft released Windows 10, which included Cortana as a digital personal assistant. Microsoft has stated that Windows 10 is the “last version” of Windows and that they will focus on updating the OS regularly with new features and security updates, rather than releasing a new major version of Windows. This approach is called “Windows as a Service,” where updates are delivered through regular, incremental updates rather than large-scale releases. The goal is to provide a more consistent and stable platform for users, as well as simplify the development process for Microsoft.

Windows 11

Despite Microsoft’s previous statements that Windows 10 would be the “last version” of Windows, they announced the release of Windows 11 on June 24, 2021. It was officially released to the public on October 5, 2021, and users of Windows 10 are eligible for a free upgrade to Windows 11, provided their system meets the minimum requirements.

Windows 11 includes several new features and design changes, including a redesigned Start menu, a new Widgets panel on the taskbar, and improved multitasking capabilities. Microsoft Edge, a Chromium-based browser, has replaced Internet Explorer, and Microsoft Teams has been integrated into Windows, allowing for seamless communication and collaboration with others. Microsoft has also announced plans to offer more flexibility in software distribution through the Microsoft Store and to support Android apps on Windows 11, which could significantly expand the app library available to users.

Overall, Windows 11 represents a significant update to the Windows operating system and introduces new features and improvements that are aimed at enhancing the user experience and productivity.

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