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Microsoft will allow you to install Windows 11 on older computers. Know how!

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Microsoft has officially announced some minor changes to the official Windows 11 CPU support list, along with additional details on operating system security requirements. But another quieter announcement should alleviate system requirements angst further: Microsoft won’t stop you from performing manual installations of Windows 11 on systems that don’t meet official requirements.

This means that people running Windows 10 on unsupported systems will not receive Windows 11 through Windows Update, but will still be able to update if they download an ISO file and perform an update or a clean install manually.

This will be a special benefit for PCs that are at the limit of Windows 11 system requirements, such as those running 6th or 7th gen Intel Core CPUs or first gen AMD Ryzen processors. These chips do not support some optional security requirements, but can meet TPM 2.0 and Secure Boot and Performance requirements and still get modern DCH driver support from Intel, AMD, and most PC OEMs.

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Microsoft still actively recommends that you do not run Windows 11 on any system that does not meet official support criteria. According to data from PCs running Insider Preview builds, Microsoft says PCs that didn’t meet the requirements had “52% more kernel-mode crashes” than PCs that did, and primary applications crashed 43% more often on unsupported hardware.

But allowing users to make the decision for themselves is arguably what the company should have done in the first place – people not looking for the Windows 11 update will never get it if their hardware isn’t adequate, but more advanced users, testers and IT departments that want to run the latest software on their computers can assess the payoffs and make the decision for themselves.

Current versions of Windows 11 Insider Preview block installation if you don’t have a safe boot or TPM, however you can get around this limitation with some quick Windows Registry hacks; we still don’t know if the final Windows 11 ISOs will do the same system checks. If you want to try out some features of Windows 11 if you have to install it, click on the previous link to access a browser version.

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