Microsoft has released the latest Windows 11 operating system and it will be offered as a free upgrade for Windows 10 users. However, not all devices running Windows 10 will be compatible with Windows 11. Microsoft has raised the windows 11 minimum system requirements for PC hardware, and the biggest surprise is the CPU requirements. Windows 11 will only officially support 8th generation Intel Core processors and later, and Apollo Lake generation Pentium and Celeron processors and later.
As a result, millions of current Windows 10 devices will potentially be unable to upgrade to Windows 11. This also includes Microsoft’s $3,500 Surface Studio 2 devices. In addition, Windows 11 will only officially support AMD Ryzen 2000 and newer processors and 2nd generation or newer EPYC chips. You can find a complete list of supported processors on the Microsoft website , but we’ll cover the basics:
Windows 11 minimum requirements
- Processor: Modern 1 gigahertz (GHz) dual-core 64-bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
- RAM: 4GB RAM
- Hard disk space: 64 GB
- Monitor: 9-inch display with 1366×768 resolution
- Compatible with UEFI, Secure Boot and TPM 2.0.
- Video adapter: Video card compatible with DirectX 12 and WWDM 2.x.
- You need an active Internet connection to set up Windows 11 Home
You can run the official PC health checkup tool or WhyNotWin11 tool to check if your device meets all the above system requirements to upgrade or install windows 11.
Windows 11 will support the following Intel processors
- Intel 8th Generation (Coffee Lake)
- Intel 9th Generation (Coffee Lake Refresh)
- 10th Gen Intel (Comet Lake)
- Intel 10th Generation (Ice Lake)
- 11th Gen Intel (Rocket Lake)
- 11th Gen Intel (Tiger Lake)
- Intel Xeon Skylake-SP
- Intel Xeon Cascade Lake-SP
- Intel Xeon Cooper Lake-SP
- Intel Xeon Ice Lake-SP
Windows 11 will support the following AMD processors
- AMD Ryzen 2000
- AMD Ryzen 3000
- AMD Ryzen 4000
- AMD Ryzen 5000
- AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2000
- AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3000
- AMD Ryzen Threadripper Pro 3000
- AMD EPYC Gen 2
- AMD EPYC Gen 3
Microsoft says that these system requirements are “soft limits” for the Windows 11 installer. This means that Windows 11 can be installed on devices with older processors, but a warning will appear, and the company does not guarantee its support in the long term.
TPM 2.0 and secure boot required
Many interested users have already run the PC Health Check (Microsoft PC Health) application to see if their device is compatible with Windows 11. In many cases, they have received the error “ Windows 11 cannot run on this computer ” due to the TPM chip which is now a requirement. All this has led to some additional confusion regarding hardware support.
For Windows 11, you will need a TPM with specification version 2.0 or higher. In addition, the device must support secure boot – Secure Boot. Both of these technologies are designed to improve the security of Windows and prevent malware and ransomware from breaking and corrupting encryption keys and other security elements.
Although Microsoft required a TPM chip for Windows 10, the system itself did not insist that this module be activated. In the case of Windows 11, everything changes, and if these technologies are disabled in the BIOS of your computer, then you will have to find and activate them manually .
David Weston, director of technology for enterprise security and OS security at Microsoft explained:
“Almost every processor released in the last 5-7 years has a TPM.” He recommends that Windows 10 users who are experiencing a Windows 11 compatibility issue check the BIOS setting for PTT for Intel or PSP fTPM for AMD. You may need to read your device manual to find these settings.
If you’ve enabled TPM support and your device still fails validation, your processor is most likely not on the fully supported list.
Intel has confirmed the system requirements outlined by Microsoft. A company representative stated:
A wide range of Intel-based platforms are expected to support Windows 11, including 8th Gen Intel Core processors and later, and Intel Pentium and Intel Celeron processors of the Apollo Lake generation and later.
This is the first significant change in hardware requirements since the release of Windows 8 in 2012. Increased processor requirements affect a huge number of users.
What’s more, starting January 2023, Microsoft will introduce front-facing camera requirements for all Windows 11 devices except desktop PCs. This change will also affect hardware that will run Windows 11 in the coming years.