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Windows 11 – Application-Readiness


Tim Russell

Modern Workspace

•  Jun 10, 2024

Windows 11 is the newest version of the Microsoft operating system, designed to offer a modern, secure, and productive experience for users and businesses. New features, such as a redesigned Start menu, Snap layouts, Widgets and more have been introduced in Windows 11. 

However, upgrading to Windows 11 also requires ensuring that your business applications are compatible and ready for the new platform. In this article, I will explain why application readiness is important, what are the main challenges and benefits of upgrading your applications to Windows 11, and how you can remove the stress and leverage the support models from Microsoft and CDW to make the transition easier and more affordable. 

Why Application Readiness Matters 

Application readiness is the process of ensuring that your business applications work as expected on a new operating system, without any errors, performance issues, or security risks. When moving to Windows 11, there is not just the operating system but new processor architectures such as ARM coming into mainstream usage, as well as improved security protocols built into the silicon components, which secure from device to cloud. Application readiness is essential for any business that relies on software to run its operations, as it can prevent costly downtime, data loss, customer dissatisfaction, compliance violations, and security breaches. 

The Challenges and Benefits of Windows 11 

Upgrading your applications to Windows 11 can pose some challenges, such as: 

  • Identifying which applications are compatible with Windows 11 and which ones need to be updated, tested, or replaced. 
  • Managing the deployment and configuration of the new applications across your devices and networks. 
  • Training your staff and users on how to use the new applications and features. 
  • Monitoring and troubleshooting any issues that may arise during or after the upgrade. 
  • Aligning application co-residency to device and operating system refresh programs. 

However, upgrading your applications to Windows 11 can also bring many benefits, such as: 

  • Enhancing the security and reliability of your applications, as Windows 11 offers stronger protection against malware, ransomware, and other threats. 
  • Boosting the performance and efficiency of your applications, as Windows 11 supports faster and smoother multitasking, collaboration, and communication. 
  • Improving the usability and accessibility of your applications, as Windows 11 provides a more intuitive and customisable user interface, with options for dark mode, touch, voice, and pen input. 
  • Increasing the innovation and differentiation of your applications, as Windows 11 enables you to leverage the latest technologies and trends, such as cloud, AI, and IoT. 

office meeting around a tv with date being shown

How to simplify costs for application migration 

One of the main barriers to upgrading your applications to Windows 11 is the cost and complexity of the process. However, you don't have to do it alone. Microsoft and its partners offer various financial support models to help you plan, execute, and manage your application readiness project. For example, you can benefit from: 

  • The Microsoft FastTrack Program, which provides free guidance and assistance from Microsoft experts and CDW to help you migrate your applications and data to Windows 11. 
  • CDW offer an Application Readiness Service, which provides a comprehensive and customised solution to help you assess, remediate, test, and deploy your applications to Windows 11, with minimal disruption and risk. 

By leveraging these financial support models, you can reduce the cost and complexity of your application readiness project and focus on the benefits and opportunities of Windows 11 for your business. 

Microsoft App Assure for Windows 11 

Part of the Microsoft FastTrack Program is the App Assure for Windows 11, which is a service that provides free technical support and assistance for any application compatibility issues that you may encounter during your migration to Windows 11. If you find an app that doesn't work on Windows 11, you can submit a request to the App Assure team, who will work with you to diagnose and resolve the issue, or provide an alternative solution if needed. App Assure covers both Microsoft and third-party applications, as well as custom and in-house applications. CDW and Microsoft can help with App Assure where your estate has 150 or more seats of Windows 11 Enterprise or Education. 

With App Assure, you have peace of mind that your applications will run smoothly on Windows 11, and that you can get expert help if you face any challenges. App Assure complements the Application Readiness Service by providing an additional layer of support and assurance for your application migration project. 

From Testing to Delivery 

A key feature of Application Readiness Service is that it can seamlessly deliver the applications that have been tested and remediated for Windows 11 to your preferred application delivery platform, such as Intune or other similar products. This ensures that your applications are always up to date and compliant with the latest security and performance standards. 

The Application Readiness Test that CDW use scans your applications for compatibility issues with Windows 11, and provides recommendations on how to resolve them. You can then use the Application Remediation Service to apply the suggested fixes and create a new version of your application that is ready for Windows 11. 

Once your application is ready, you can use the Application Delivery Service to package and upload your application to your application delivery library, where you can manage and distribute it to your end users. The Application Delivery Service supports various packaging formats, such as MSIX, MSI, App-V, and EXE. It is possible to customise the installation parameters, such as silent mode, pre-requisites, and dependencies, to meet your individual needs. 

The Application Delivery Service also integrates with the Application Monitoring Service, which tracks the usage and performance of your applications on Windows 11 devices and alerts you of any issues or anomalies. You can use this information to optimise your application delivery strategy and ensure optimal user experience and satisfaction. 

Application Delivery 

Once your applications are ready for Windows 11, you need a reliable and efficient way to deliver and maintain them across your organisation. Depending on the type and complexity of your applications, you can choose from different delivery methods, such as Intune or one of the application delivery tools CDW offer. 

Intune from Microsoft offers more than application management and policy control, it can also deploy, update, and monitor your applications on Windows 11 devices, as well as iOS, Android, and macOS devices. 

CDW work with partners who offer software-defined application delivery platforms that enable you to deliver and manage any type of application from any source to almost any device, not just Windows 11. You can use application delivery tools to create a unified workspace for your users, where they can access all their applications, regardless of the device, operating system, or location. Unlike Intune, which in itself is a very complete solution, these alternative solutions support legacy, modern, and cloud-native applications, and integrate with various deployment technologies such as; RDS, Citrix, VMware, and Azure.  

With these broad capabilities, an application can look the same across multiple platforms but be delivered as a full install, a virtualisation or even a forced web presentation, such as with M365, all dependent on multiple variables defined at runtime. 

By using any of these application delivery platforms, you can ensure that your applications are delivered and maintained in a consistent, secure, and user-friendly way, and that you can leverage the full potential of Windows 11 for your business. 

Application translation from x86 to ARM architecture 

As mentioned above, one of the issues some businesses may face is in the utilisation of ARM processors, such as Qualcomm’s Snap Dragons X Elite. Although for many this is a new addition to the laptop lineup, they have been available for a number of years, only just now becoming mainstream. Qualcomm’s history has been predominantly in the mobile device and communication market leading to a pedigree of energy efficient, small form factor, well equipped processors. This technology and experience we have seen in a small range of laptops over the last few years and can expect the range to grow. The Windows 11 translation engine which allows x86 native applications to run also makes it simpler to adopt ARM architected devices. 

windows laptop


- Windows 11 offers improved security, performance, and user experience, but requires hardware and software compatibility checks before upgrading. 

- ARM processors, such as Qualcomm's Snapdragon X Elite, are becoming more popular for laptops due to their energy efficiency, small size, and advanced features. Windows 11 supports ARM devices through a translation engine that runs x86 applications. 

- CDW Modern Workspace can help businesses prepare for Windows 11 by providing Device & Application Assessments. The application assessment evaluates the readiness of applications for Windows 11, and Application Delivery, a service that deploys and updates applications on Windows 11 devices. 

Intune from Microsoft, Application Assessment and Application Delivery are all components of the CDW Modern Workspace. Even if you are holding off with deployment to nearer the Windows 10 end of support date, being aware of how ready your applications are for Windows 11 will give you the ability and confidence to plan effectively to meet this date. 

Please reach out to understand how CDW can evaluate your estate and support your seamless migration away from Windows 10 prior to the November 2025 end of support date. 

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