If you are using an older version of Microsoft’s Windows operating system and have decided that you would like to upgrade to the latest Windows 11 release. This quick guide will take you through the process of how to upgrade to Windows 11 making sure that your computer system is compatible and ready to accept the current release from Microsoft.
To help with upgrading an existing computer, Microsoft has provided several useful utilities including the Windows 11 Installation Assistant which will help you decide whether your system is compatible with the new operating system or whether you need to upgrade any components before installing Windows 11. This is useful if you are considering upgrading a Windows 10 PC to Windows 11.
Upgrade to Windows 11
First check your PC is compatible with Windows 11
Before attempting to install Windows 11 on your old Windows PC, Microsoft highly recommends you check that your computer hardware is compatible with Windows 11 as it can only be installed on PCs with a 64-bit processor. You will be pleased to know that Microsoft provides a PC Health Check app that will quickly diagnose and tell you if there are any issues that Windows 11 might encounter during the installation process or if your PC does not meet the requirements needed to install the operating system. It is also worth remembering that trying to also install Windows 11 on a device that does not meet the minimum system requirements is not recommended by Microsoft and may cause malfunctions or compatibility issues.
Since the rollout of Windows 11 last year, Microsoft has been rolling out a notification to all Windows computers that are compatible with their latest operating system. Alerting users that a Windows 11 free update is available to install. If you have not received this notification or dismissed it in the past, you can check to see whether your system is eligible by going to : Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Check for updates.
1. Use the automatic Windows 11 upgrade application ( Internet connection required )
If you are considering upgrading your current Windows 10 PC to Microsoft Windows 11 operating system, Microsoft suggests you download, install and run the Windows 11 Installation Assistant which can be downloaded from the official Microsoft support site here. It is worth remembering before installing that you will need 9 GB of free disk space to download Windows 11 and your PC must have at least Windows 10 version 2004 or higher installed to run the installation assistant program. It also goes without saying that you will also need a current and official Windows 10 license.
Once you have downloaded the Windows 11 Installation Assistant, follow the instructions below. Remember the installation could take some time and your computer will need to reboot a few times during the process so remember to install Windows 11 when you do not need your computer and always backup any data before doing so to make sure you do not lose any of your personal documents, files or media if the worst should go wrong. It is also worth noting that the Windows 11 Installation Assistant doesn’t run on ARM-based PCs and Windows 11 can only run on 64-bit CPUs.
1. On your Windows 10 PC select Run, remember you will need to be an administrator to run the software
2. Once the Windows 11 Installation Assistant confirms the device hardware is compatible, you will be presented with the license terms. Select Accept and Install.
3. Once the Windows 11 Installation Assistant is ready, click the Restart Now button to complete the installation of Windows 11 on your computer.
4. It might take some time to install Windows 11, and your PC will restart a few times. Remember to be patient and just wait for the process to complete.
5. Not all PCs running Windows 10 are eligible to receive a free Windows 11 upgrade or may not be suitable to install it at all.
2. Create a Windows 11 installation bootable USB or DVD
If you would like to create a bootable USB or DVD to install the Windows 11 operating system on a new computer system, follow the instructions below.
1. Download the Windows 11 media creation app from Microsoft using an Internet connection
2. Make sure you have sufficient space on the USB, or external drive you are downloading the .iso file to.
3. If you receive a “disc image file is too large” message while trying to create a DVD bootable disc from the Windows 11 ISO file, consider using a higher capacity Dual Layer DVD.
4. Windows 11 Media Creation Tool creates installation media only for x64 processors. For ARM-based PCs, you should wait until you are notified through Windows Update that the upgrade is ready for your PC.
3. Download a Windows 11 ISO for x64 PCs
As mentioned above, Windows 11 will only run on PCs equipped with 64-bit processors. Using the downloaded ISO you can create bootable installation media or create a virtual machine to install Windows 11. Microsoft provides a multi-edition ISO which uses your product key to unlock the correct edition. Download the latest installation file from the Microsoft website.
“Installing Windows 11 media on a PC that does not meet the Windows 11 minimum system requirements is not recommended and may cause compatibility issues. If you proceed with installing Windows 11 on a PC that does not meet the requirements, that PC will no longer be supported and won’t be entitled to receive updates. Damages to the PC due to lack of compatibility aren’t covered under the manufacturer’s warranty.”
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