Windows 11 Home and Windows 11 Pro are the two main editions that a consumer can use if they bet on Microsoft’s new operating system once the company has simplified the number of versions. But, What are their differences? Which one should a consumer choose?
Upgrading to Windows 11 for Windows 10 computers that exceed the minimum requirements is free and it is done on the same edition of Windows 10 previously installed. That is, the Home version can only be updated (for free) to Home and the Pro to its equivalent version. But it may be the case that you want to go from Home to Pro, have computers without valid licenses that you want to update or buy new PCs without an operating system.
For these cases, Microsoft offers Windows 10 Home or Pro licenses (upgradeable to Windows 11) for an official price of 139 and 199 dollars, respectively, while the move from Home to Pro that can be done through an option in the Microsoft Store is even more expensive relatively: 99 dollars.
Of course, there are other types of licenses that can be used legally and that they are much cheaper, like the ones from Supercdk that we have been offering you in previous weeks and that allow for just 12 euros to buy a Windows 10 license and from there upgrade to Windows 11 if you so decide.
Microsoft has offered different editions of Windows for a long time. The reason is quite simple. While a single operating system without additional versions is feasible, not all users need all the features it can contain, and not all computers support all the features. In addition, it is necessary to differentiate the consumer market from the professional and business, because they do not have the same needs.
A) Yes, offering several versions is ideal … without going overboard. Windows XP was sold with two main versions (Home Edition and Professional) and from there the rest branched out. Windows Vista and then Windows 7 complicated the scenario by introducing quite a few more versions: Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Enterprise, Business, and Ultimate, with a different set of features among all of them.
Fortunately, Windows 10 and Windows 11 have returned to normal, and although there are specific versions for workstations, education and companies, and special editions such as SE, Home and Pro are not ruled out, they are the only two editions that most consumers should know.
Windows 11 Home vs. Pro
Windows 11 Home is the default version shipped pre-installed on most new computers, while the Pro contains a handful of additional features and is typically pre-installed on high-end personal computers or those intended for business client machines. Microsoft offers a specific web page where it compares the functions between versions.
It must be said that Windows 11 Home is sufficient for the vast majority of consumers since It is the most complete base version that Microsoft has released in recent times, with all the expected features including Windows Hello, Secure Boot, Windows Security, Parental Controls, Device Encryption, and many others.
There are even other functions available that in previous versions of Windows were only offered by default in higher versions such as Linux subsystem for Windows and in the future the other subsystem that Microsoft is working on, that of Android, which will also be available in the Home version.
Windows 11 Pro, more complete, but necessary for consumption?
The ‘Pro’ version includes all the features of Home while adding additional features, mainly for professional environments. One of the most notable is BitLocker, a security feature that “encrypts” or “scrambles” data on a computer. Other relevant ones are WIP, which helps protect business applications and data against accidental data leaks, and the rest have to do with business administration and management such as Hyper-V hypervisor, Windows Sandbox or full support for Windows Remote Desktop.
There are other differences that the Microsoft site does not cite and that may be important to some users, such as Windows 10 Home no longer supports local accounts on installation (as is possible with Windows 10 Home) and requires you to link a Microsoft ID account to the system, while the Pro version can use local accounts from the same installation. Both can work with both once installed.
There are also some differences regarding hardware. Both have the same minimum hardware requirements (4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, a dual-core CPU, TPM 2.0, Secure Boot, or a DirectX 12-compliant GPU), but Windows 11 Home only supports up to 64 CPU cores. and 128 GB of RAM. It is also not compatible with dual CPU systems, although it is not really something that is used in the consumer market.
Which one should you use? Windows 11 Home is the version to be chosen by a typical user. It includes all the expected functions, the applications and games will run the same as in the Pro version, it is much cheaper and another important point considering the consumption of resources: it will not load business modules that you surely do not need.
As for BitLocker, it is interesting, but there are a dozen alternatives to use in Home and the same can be said of the Hyper-V hypervisor or the remote desktop client: there are third-party applications that can be used. It all depends on your specific needs and use cases, but the base edition of Windows 11 (less basic than previous systems) is sufficient for the vast majority of users.