Microsoft did something that it never has before. The tech giant earlier said that only PCs with select CPUs (mostly newer ones) might be eligible to get the Windows 11 update and it was considering adding more to the list. However, that didn’t work out as planned.
Microsoft was only able to add a few Intel processor families to the list of supported Windows 11 CPUs. The PC Health Check app was also updated to display the new changes. Although there might just be some hope left – you can still install Windows 11 on older PCs using ISOs.
Installing Windows 11 on old hardware
Microsoft still won’t be officially supporting AMD Zen 1 CPUs, even after testing them recently. “After carefully analyzing the first generation of AMD Zen processors in partnership with AMD, together we concluded that there are no additions to the supported CPU list,” said Microsoft’s Windows team.
Windows 11 onwards, it will be a great task to install and keep it updated. You can use Windows 11 ISOs to install the OS on your older PC, even if your system doesn’t meet the minimum requirements. On the other hand, Microsoft can’t guarantee driver compatibility and overall system stability.
Although, all hope is not lost. ASUS is testing BIOS updates to extend compatibility to some motherboards running older Intel CPUs. As discovered by Windows Latest, ASUS released a BIOS update for several motherboards compatible with Intel 6th and 7th Generation processors. The update changelog reads, “Support Windows 11 by default, no settings changes required in the UEFI BIOS.” These CPUs are older than the ones specified in Microsoft’s list. Hence, we might see other manufacturers extending support for users that Microsoft left alone.
Moreover, there is a big catch to this. Users who install Windows 11 via ISOs cannot get updates. You read that right, you won’t get anything, which may include security updates via Windows Update if you use an ISO to install Windows 11 older PCs. Microsoft confirmed the same to The Verge.
This seems like a stunt as everyone knows Microsoft doesn’t take the harsh way. As history is proof, the company often extended support and patches even after shelving an operating system. Microsoft is trying to become Apple, just at the wrong place. Microsoft’s official reasoning behind offering this workaround is to let businesses evaluate Windows 11.
What does ‘no updates’ mean?
Essentially, if you install Windows 11 on unsupported hardware using an ISO file, you won’t get updates. No updates mean no driver updates, definition updates, feature updates, and security updates. Likewise, it means that you’ll have to install Windows 11 via an ISO every time there is a new feature update out.
Installing via ISOs doesn’t hurt that much when it comes to feature updates, and we always recommend clean installing whenever a major update releases. However, users not getting security updates on time is a severe problem. You might want to rethink if you want to upgrade your OS or not. Certainly, Microsoft can switch its path again, but things are unclear for now.
With that said, we are yet to hear something solid on whether the support is being pulled due to a legit limitation or the company just wants to phase out old devices. What are your thoughts on this? Drop them in the comments down below.