[Positive] [Powerful] How to Easily Install Windows 11 on Unsupported Hardware [in 5 Steps]

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UPDATED 4/12/2023: If you have a computer with unsupported hardware, you may upgrade to Windows 11, but not through Windows Update. Instead, you must use a bootable USB flash drive or ISO file to perform a clean install or in-place upgrade manually. 

Microsoft left the loophole open but didn’t mention it anywhere in the documentation, nor is it supported. According to the company, installing Windows 11 on unsupported hardware is an option for organizations. However, anyone could upgrade at their own risk knowing there is no system stability and driver compatibility guarantee.

How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PC without data loss

In other words, you can continue with the setup manually if you choose to install Windows 11 on incompatible hardware. However, you must confirm that the upgrade will have an “unsupported state.” Microsoft defines an “unsupported state” as a computer that doesn’t meet the minimum system requirements. As a result, it won’t be entitled to receive updates from Windows Update. Although these devices may continue to receive updates anyway, the company isn’t obligated to provide security and driver updates or technical support.


This guide will teach you how to install Windows 11 (version 22H2) on a computer with incompatible hardware. Since the device does not officially support the new version of Windows, using this workaround is not recommended unless you know the risks and understand that stability, compatibility, and updates are not guaranteed. 

Understanding Windows 11 System Requirements

Before delving into the installation process, it’s crucial to understand the system requirements for Windows 11. Microsoft has raised the bar to provide users with a more secure and reliable experience. Windows 11 requires a compatible processor, sufficient RAM, and TPM version 2.0, among other specifications. If your computer falls short of these requirements, you may encounter issues during the installation or experience performance problems afterward.

Why Install Windows 11 on Unsupported Hardware?

You might wonder why someone would want to install an operating system on unsupported hardware. There are several reasons for this decision. Some users have hardware that is slightly below the official requirements but can still handle Windows 11. Others may be excited about the new features and interface and are willing to explore ways to make it work. Additionally, developers and tech enthusiasts may need to test applications or provide support for Windows 11 on a variety of hardware configurations.

Important Considerations Before Proceeding

Before attempting to install Windows 11 on unsupported hardware, it’s important to consider a few factors. First, keep in mind that these methods involve modifying system files or using virtual machines, which may void warranties or violate licensing agreements. Additionally, installing Windows 11 on unsupported hardware may lead to performance issues or compatibility glitches. It’s recommended to backup important data and create a restore point before proceeding with any installation method.


Install Windows 11 on unsupported hardware from USB

Using the ISO file to perform a clean installation, you will need to create a bootable media using a third-party tool like Rufus or Command Prompt to start the setup process with a USB flash drive. 

Install Windows 11 on an unsupported pc using ISO

In addition, you also have to make sure the device can start from USB, which means you will have to change the UEFI settings. Since most computers have different settings, check your manufacturer support website for more specific details.

To install Windows 11 on an unsupported PC, use these steps:

  1. Start the unsupported PC with the Windows 11 USB flash drive.
  2. Press any key to continue.
  3. Use the “Shift + F10” keyboard shortcut to open Command Prompt.
  4. Type the following command and press Enter: regedit
    Windows 11 Setup open regedit
  5. Navigate the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\Setup
  6. Right-click the Setup (folder) key, select New, and then the Key option.Registry LabConfig
  7. Name the key LabConfig and press Enter.
  8. Right-click the LabConfig (folder) key, select New, and then the DWORD (32-bit) Value option.
  9. Name the key BypassTPMCheck and press Enter.
  10. Double-click the newly created key and set its value from 0 to 1.BypassTPMCheck regedit
  11. Click the OK button.
  12. Right-click the LabConfig (folder) key, select New, and then the DWORD (32-bit) Value option.
  13. Name the DWORD BypassSecureBootCheck and press Enter.
  14. Double-click the newly created key and set its value from 0 to 1.BypassSecureBootCheck regedit
  15. Click the OK button.
  16. Click the Next button.Windows 11 Setup
  17. Click the Install now button.Windows 11 install option

Install Windows 11 on unsupported CPU Registry

  1. Click the “I don’t have a product key” option if you are reinstalling. If Windows 11 has been previously activated after the installation, reactivation will happen automatically.Skip license key option
  2. Select the edition of “Windows 11” that your license key activates (if applicable).
  3. Check the “I accept the license terms” option.
  4. Click the Next button.
  5. Select the “Custom: Install Windows only (advanced)” option.

    Windows 11 custom install option

  6. Select each partition in the hard drive you want to install Windows 11 and click the Delete button. (Typically, the “Drive 0” is the drive that contains all the installation files.)Delete partitions Windows 11 setupWarning: Deleting a partition also deletes all data on the drive. Also, it is not required to delete the partitions from a secondary hard drive.
  7. Select the hard drive (“Drive 0 Unallocated Space”) to install Windows 11 on an unsupported device.Clean install Windows 11 on unallocated space
  8. Click the Next button.
  9. Select your region setting after the installation on the first page of the out-of-the-box experience (OOBE).Windows 11 OOBE region
  10. Click the Yes button.

To upgrade an incompatible computer to Windows 11 (version 22H2 or 21H2) with an ISO file

  1. Select your keyboard layout setting.Keyboard layout
  2. Click the Yes button.
  3. Click the Skip button if you do not need to configure a second layout.
  4. The computer will automatically connect to the network if it uses an Ethernet connection. If you have a wireless connection, you must set up the connection manually (a security key may be required).
  5. (Optional) Confirm a name for the computer.Windows 11 OOBE name PC
  6. Click the Next button. (The device will restart automatically.)
  7. Select the “Set up for personal use” option if you are configuring Windows 11 Pro. The “Home” edition does not have this option.Windows 11 setup types
  8. Click the Next button.
  9. Click the Sign in button.OOBE Sign in page
  10. Confirm your Microsoft account email, phone number, or Skype identification to create an account.Create Windows 11 account
  11. Click the Next button.
  12. Confirm your Microsoft account password.
  13. Click the Next button.
  14. Click on “View more options.”OOBE restore settings
  15. Choose the “Set up a new device” option.OOBE Set up as a new device
  16. Click the Next button.
  17. Click the Create PIN button.Windows 11 OOBE create PIN

Windows 11 on unsupported CPU

  1. Create a new four-digit PIN.Create account PIN
  2. Click the OK button.
  3. Confirm the privacy settings best suit your situation by turning on or off the toggle switch for each setting.Windows 11 OOBE privacy settings
  4. Click the Next button.
  5. Click the Next button again.
  6. Click the Accept button.Privacy settings continued
  7. (Optional) On the “Let’s customize your experience” page, select one or more ways you plan to use the device to allow the setup to suggest tools and service customizations during this experience.Windows 11 OOBE customize experience
  8. Click the Accept button to continue. Or click the Skip button to skip this part of the setup.
  9. Click the Skip button for the Android phone link process.
  10. Click the “Next” button to automatically upload your Desktop, Pictures, and Documents folders to OneDrive. Or Select the “Only save files to this PC” option.OOBE OneDrive backup setup
  11. Click the Next button.
  12. Click the Decline button to skip the Microsoft 365 setup.
  13. Click the “Skip for now” button to skip the Game Pass subscription promotion.

Once you complete the steps, Windows 11 will install in an unsupported state, so you may not get security or driver updates.

Upgrade to Windows 11 from ISO file

Alternatively, you can perform an in-place upgrade of Windows 11 with an ISO file on a device that doesn’t meet the system requirements. However, you must run a script to bypass the TPM, Secure Boot, and processor check.

1. Bypass Windows 11 requirement checks

To bypass the minimum system requirements to install Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Open MediaCreationTool.bat GitHub page.
  2. Click the Code button from the top-right corner and the Download Zip option.MediaCreationTool.bat download
  3. Select the MediaCreationToo.bat-main folder and click the Extract all button.File Explorer extract zip
  4. Click the Browse button.
  5. Select the extraction location and click the Select folder button.
  6. Click the Extract button.
  7. In the extracted folder, inside the MediaCreationToo.bat-main folder, open the bypass11 folder.
  8. Right-click the “Skip_TPM_Check_on_Dynamic_Update.cmd” file and select the Run as administrator option.Skip_TPM_Check_on_Dynamic_Update.cmd
  9. Click the More info option.
  10. Click the Run anyway button.

Once you complete the steps, you can mount an ISO file to begin the installation of Windows 11 on unsupported hardware (see steps below). If the script is not working, restart the computer and run it several times.

Upgrade to Windows 11 from ISO

2. Upgrade to Windows 11 from ISO

To upgrade an incompatible computer to Windows 11 (version 22H2 or 21H2) with an ISO file, use these steps:

  1. Open the Microsoft Support website.
  2. Under the “Download Windows 11 Disk Image (ISO)” section, select the Windows 11 option.
  3. Click the Download button.
  4. Select the installation language.
  5. Click the Confirm button.
  6. Click the Download button to save the Windows 11 ISO file on the device.
  7. Right-click the ISO file, select the Open with submenu, and choose the Windows Explorer option.
  8. Click on the mounted drive from the left navigation pane.
  9. Double-click the Setup file to begin the Windows 11 upgrade process.
  10. (Optional) Click the “Change how Windows Setup downloads updates” option.Windows 11 setup update options
  11. Select the “Not right now” option.Disable updates during installation
  12. Click the Next button.
  13. Click the Install button to upgrade while keeping files and apps.Media Creation Tool settings

If you want to start fresh with a clean installation of Windows 11, click the “Change what to keep” option, select the “Nothing” option, click the Next button, and then click the “Install” button.

After you complete the steps, the setup will continue to upgrade the laptop or desktop computer to the Windows 11 2022 Update (version 22H2). However, Windows 11 will run in an unsupported state that won’t guarantee updates, nor will you receive support from Microsoft.

Upgrade to Windows 11 from Registry

Although it’s not supported, Microsoft has published a workaround to bypass the Windows 11 requirements to continue the setup by editing the Registry. However, the computer needs a TPM 1.2 chip and UEFI firmware with Secure Boot enabled. (These steps may or may not work on Windows 11 22H2.)

1. Edit Registry to bypass official checks

To bypass the minimum system requirements to upgrade to Windows 11 22H2, use these steps:

  1. Open Start
  2. Search for regedit and click the top result to open the Registry Editor.
  3. Navigate to the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\Setup\MoSetup
  4. Right-click the MoSetup (folder) key, select the New submenu, and choose the “DWORD (32-bit) Value” option.
  5. Name the key AllowUpgradesWithUnsupportedTPMOrCPU and press Enter.
  6. Double-click the newly created key and set its value from 0 to 1.AllowUpgradesWithUnsupportedTPMOrCPU

Once you complete the steps, you can mount an ISO file or connect a USB media to begin the installation of Windows 11 on unsupported hardware.

2. Upgrade to Windows 11 using the ISO file

To begin the Windows 11 upgrade process, use these steps:

  1. Open Microsoft Support website.
  2. Under the “Download Windows 11 Disk Image (ISO)” section, select the Windows 11 option.
  3. Click the Download button.
  4. Select the installation language.
  5. Click the Confirm button.
  6. Click the Download button to save the Windows 11 ISO file on the device.
  7. Right-click the ISO file, select the Open with submenu, and choose the Windows Explorer option.
  8. Click on the mounted drive from the left navigation pane.
  9. Double-click the Setup file to begin the Windows 11 upgrade process.
  10. (Optional) Click the “Change how Windows Setup downloads updates” option.Windows 11 setup update options
  11. Select the “Not right now” option.Disable updates during installation
  12. Click the Next button.
  13. Click the Accept button to agree to the terms.Windows 11 setup requirement warning
  14. Click the Install button to upgrade while keeping your files and apps.Media Creation Tool settings

If you want to start fresh with a clean installation of Windows 11, click the “Change what to keep” option, select the “Nothing” option, click the “Next” button, and then click the “Install” button.

Once you complete the steps, the setup will continue upgrading the device to Windows 11.

Conclusion

Installing Windows 11 on unsupported hardware may require a bit of creativity and technical expertise, but it is indeed possible. In this article, we explored various methods to achieve this goal, including modifying system files, using virtual machines, utilizing transformation packs, and seeking professional assistance.

Before proceeding with any method, it’s important to weigh the risks, potential performance issues, and legal implications. Always back up your data and consider the impact on warranties and licensing agreements.

Remember that while these methods may enable you to experience the Windows 11 interface, they may not provide the same level of performance and compatibility as on officially supported hardware. Use them with caution and understand the limitations they may entail.

Windows 11 brings exciting new features and a visually appealing interface. By exploring alternative installation methods, you can unlock the benefits of this operating system on hardware that falls short of the official requirements.

FAQs

Q1. Is it legal to install Windows 11 on unsupported hardware?

A1. Modifying system files or using virtual machines to install Windows 11 on unsupported hardware may violate Microsoft’s licensing agreements. It’s important to understand the legal implications and consult the terms and conditions provided by Microsoft.

Q2. Will installing Windows 11 on unsupported hardware affect performance?

A2. Yes, installing Windows 11 on hardware that does not meet the official requirements may result in performance issues or compatibility glitches. It’s recommended to evaluate the potential impact on your system and be prepared for potential limitations.

Q3. Can I upgrade my hardware to meet the Windows 11 requirements?

A3. In some cases, upgrading or replacing specific hardware components can bring your system up to the required specifications for Windows 11. Consult with a computer technician or expert to determine the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of such upgrades.

Q4. Are transformation packs a reliable way to experience Windows 11?

A4. Transformation packs can provide a visual approximation of Windows 11 but may not replicate all the functionality and features of the actual operating system. They are primarily focused on the aesthetic aspects of Windows 11.

Q5. Should I backup my data before attempting any installation method?

A5. Yes, it’s highly recommended to backup your important data before attempting any installation method, as there is a potential risk of data loss or system instability during the process.

Meet Rebeca Winters, a tech writer with a passion for exploring emerging technologies. With a background in software development and a keen eye for detail, she delivers insightful and informative content that inspires readers to stay ahead of the curve.

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