I have one Windows computer and two Windows VMs running on my Mac Pro using Parallels. One of the VMs is in the Developer's Channel, as is the stand-alone machine. Both of these updated promptly to Windows 11, even though the checking tool on the VM machine said it could not run Windows 11

I do not like the "improvements" in the desktop or the Start Menu. 

  • Centering the task bar icons (à la MacOS) is a disadvantage. It leaves less space for the right-hand icon set. Change for no good reason is bad.
  • It now takes an extra click to access the list of installed programs.

  • Microsoft installed extra "junk" programs like Xbox, Spotify, and Instagram. Luckily they can be uninstalled with a right-click. There is an inconsistence, since other App uninstalls launch Control Panel and you must uninstall them from there.
  • It pinned Microsoft Edge to the Start Menu, even though my default browser is EdgeDev. This is a continuing problem (which I complained about several times). Apps often do not open the default browser and revert to Edge.
  • My favorite Desktop Manager Dexpot no longer works properly, and conflicts with Microsoft's new manager.
  • The windows now have very slightly rounded corners, but so far as I can tell, the system still treats them as rectangles.

But some things are neat and useful. 

  • When I had to do a Windows Update (with a reboot), it gave me a time estimate. 5 minutes seemed much faster than Windows 10.
  • It takes 1.5 minutes to boot to the log-in screen in my virtual machine. Two more minutes for the desktop to appear.

Linux works!

You must install  wsl2 and also enable nested virtualization in Parallels if you are running in a virtual machine (which does slow things down)

Then you can pick your favorite distribution from the Windows store (search for Linux distros). I prefer OpenSUSE Leap 15.3, but I have it running, so chose Ubuntu LTS

You must watch the install screen to fill in the user information:

Then, you can install a graphics app such as xterm:

sudo apt install xterm

and run it (it took a while to start, so I did a ps to list processes).

 

If you want a whole Ubuntu desktop, you can do this using XFCE.

To manage packages, install synaptic

sudo apt install synaptic

Note it has to be launched as root, and sudo synaptic did not work for me.

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