When Microsoft introduced Windows 11 this week, the company promised that it would be a free upgrade for Windows 10 users with PCs that meet the minimum system requirements, but there was some confusion over what exactly those bare minimum requirements were.

Now the company has clarified… sort of. Microsoft has confirmed that the initial plan is to support most PCs with 8th-gen or newer Intel processors, AMD processors with Zen 2 or newer CPU cores, or Qualcomm 7 and 8 series processors. But the company hasn’t ruled out supporting some slightly older chips.

8/27/2021 Update: Microsoft says Windows 11 will support some 7th-gen Intel chips, but will not support AMD Zen 1 processors. The original article continues below. 

Microsoft says that, among other things, the idea was to require Windows 11 computers to have security features including a support for device encryption, Windows Hello biometric security, virtualization-based security (VBS), hypervisor-protected code integrity (HVCI) and secure boot. Requiring a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) helps meet those requirements, but also largely limits Windows 11 to running on newer PCs.

But it also means that even some current-generation hardware including Microsoft’s own $3500+ Surface Studio 2 all-in-one PC wouldn’t qualify for a Windows 11 upgrade if the company chooses to strictly enforce the minimum system requirements.

So you can see why some folks were left scratching their heads by the requirements.

It also didn’t help that the PC Health Check app Microsoft released was telling a lot of people that their computers couldn’t run Windows 11, but didn’t necessarily tell them why. Microsoft acknowledges that app didn’t offer “the level of detail or accuracy” users expected, and the company has temporarily removed the application and will release an improved version sometime before Windows 11 becomes generally available this fall.

The good news for folks with a Surface Studio 2 or some other slightly older PCs is that Microsoft is also now promising to work with PC makers and members of the Windows Insider Preview program to test Windows 11 on some computers with 7th-gen Intel Core and AMD Zen 1 processors to see if they can deliver the experiences Microsoft is shooting for.

That doesn’t necessarily mean that every device with one of those chips will eventually be supported. Heck, it doesn’t even mean that any device will. It just means that Microsoft hasn’t ruled out supporting chips that are about a year older than those it had initially announced.

Windows 11 Minimum System Requirements
Windows 11Windows 10
Processor1 GHz dual-core
64-bit only
1GHz single-core
32-bit or 64-bit
Memory4GB1GB (32-bit)
2GB (64-bit)
Storage64GB16GB (32-bit)
20GB (64-bit)
GraphicsDirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driverDirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
Display720p display larger than 9″ with 8-bits per color channel800 x 600
System FirmwareUEFI, Secure Boot capableN/A
TPMTPM 2.0N/A

via Windows Insider Blog

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  1. I bought a OneMix3 after reading the reviews on this site. I love the little laptop, but it doesn’t have TPM.

    This doesn’t smell right. There’s no need to require TPM. I have it on my bigger desk computer, it’s disabled and it contributes nothing. MS makes the unsubstantiated claim that TPM is absolutely necessary to maintain security, which conveniently obsoletes millions of computers. Think of the billions in profit to be made by companies selling new TPM enabled computers.

    1. For what the end user might actually want, a TPM is arguably redundant when Smart Cards exist. And if you can’t remove it, it could be used to make your computer more provably uniquely identifiable across every possible action it takes on the internet.
      I think that, and their C2PA program, is why Microsoft is pushing it’s on-CPU Pluton TPM (that no consumer asked for) into every new Intel, AMD, and Qualcomm CPU.
      What Microsoft thinks is “safe” is really just what it thinks the statistical average of the most idiotic users who didn’t touch telemetry settings wants, as well as the statistical average of what it thinks the desires of businesses are (which are of course always in conflict), plus whatever engineered behavior it thinks it can get out of all its users.

    2. I’m running it on the One Mix 3 now. It overheats so much that I think it is going on fire.

  2. Yeah, Im going to find something else. I would stick with Windows 10, but I know the company will have us take a back seat to Win11. Honestly I’m okay with that, but I don’t plan to be around to see whether Microsoft eventually supports the Intel 7th generation chips. Not sure where I will go, but I doubt it will be Linux, Maybe Mac. I really wish Google would release something for the desktop besides Chrome OS

  3. To reiterate, I’m fairly sure booting the installer from the leaked .iso skips compatibility checks entirely. So if you don’t have or want a TPM on your home computer, but really need windows 11 for some bizarre reason before 2025, I’d suggest trying that first.

    1. There’s a hack where you can install Windows 11 on a system without secure boot or TPM: Make a Windows 10 install USB stick, replace the install.wim file with the Windows 11 version of this file. Then use this modified Windows 10 install USB to upgrade Windows 10 or to do a clean install. It works (at least on the Windows 11 beta that leaked). It reveals that Windows 11 doesn’t need secure boot or TPM.

      1. Simplier way is to open the resources folder on a win 10 iso and copy the appraiserres dll and then paste it on the same folder inside the win11 iso. Then you can simply upgrade your system, like I did.