How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs

The hardware requirements of Windows 11 are certainly more stringent than in the past: in addition to needing a certain amount of RAM and free disk space (equal, respectively, to 4 GB and 64 GB ), the latest operating system Microsoft requires a 1 GHz or faster 64-bit CPU with at least two logical drives, UEFI firmware with Secure Boot enabled, and TPM 2.0 controller.

The latter, if you had never heard of it, is a small chip present on the motherboard of the computer (already integrated or added at a later time), which allows you to protect data at a low level. Similar requirements represent a sort of “ax” that precludes a large number of computers – certainly not recent, but still in circulation – the possibility of installing Windows 11. If you are reading this guide, it is very likely that you own one of the many apparently excluded computers and that, for this reason, you are trying to understand how to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs .

Well, I tell you right away that this is a relatively easy operation, but be careful: Microsoft, although it has officially released a system that allows you to circumvent the control of the minimum requirements for installing Windows 11, does not recommend strongly this practice and does not guarantee updates or stability on computers that do not meet the basic requirements: I have warned you. Having made all the necessary initial clarifications of the case, there is nothing left for me to do, except wish you a good read.

Index

  • Preliminary operations
  • How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs: official procedures
    • Update
    • Installation from scratch
  • How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs via script

Preliminary operations

Before proceeding with the installation of Windows 11, it is necessary to create a USB key or a DVD from which to start the setup of the new operating system: these supports, in fact, circumvent the compatibility check of the CPU , if the installation file is started from within Windows 10 (or Windows 8.1). If, on the other hand, you initiate the installation by booting your computer directly from the installation media, the TPM 2.0 controller check is automatically skipped .

To proceed, download the Microsoft Media Creation Tool , by going to this website and clicking on the Download now button visible under the heading Creating installation media for Windows 11 . When the download is complete, open the file obtained, accept the program license and choose whether to create a USB flash drive or to download only the ISO file : in the first case, you will need to connect a USB key with at least 8 GB of space to the computer free and wait for the files to be copied.

In the second case, however, the ISO image containing the operating system will be downloaded, which can be burned to a DVD using a special software, or used in conjunction with the Rufus program to create a Windows 11 USB drive, already configured to circumvent the check on the minimum operating system requirements. If you need additional information regarding the download of Windows 11, I refer you to reading the tutorial I have dedicated to the topic.

How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs: official procedures

Despite what one might think, installing Windows 11 on non-officially supported computers is far from difficult: below you will find explained both how to upgrade from a previous edition of the Microsoft operating system, and how to reinstall Windows 11 “from scratch”.

Update

If your computer does not have the TPM 2.0 controller or an officially Windows 11 compatible CPU, but has the remaining minimum requirements (TPM 1.2 controller and Secure Boot), then you can upgrade using a Windows 11 installation media, after applying a small change to the registry.

Therefore, press the Win + R key combination on the keyboard (the Win key is the one depicting the Windows flag ), type the instruction regedit.exein the text field that appears, enter Enter and click on the Yes button , to start the registry editor. Now, use the left part of the window that opens on the screen to reach the path HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\Setup\and click on the MoSetup folder ; if you do not find it, you can create it easily: right-click on the Setup directory , select the New> Key items from the displayed context menu, assign the name MoSetupto the new key and OK , to confirm.

Once the MoSetup folder is located, right-click on it, select New> DWORD (32-bit) value from the menu that opens and assign the value the name AllowUpgradesWithUnsupportedTPMOrCPU . Finally, from Enter , double-click on the value just created, set the value 1 inside the value field and click on the OK button . Then restart your computer to apply the change.

At this point, you can start the Windows 11 update using the USB key or the DVD created above: connect the chosen media to the computer and, if the Autoplay screen appears , indicate that you want to open the file by choosing the ‘special option.Setup.exe

If nothing happens, manually start the aforementioned file: open the Windows File Explorer (the yellow folder icon on the taskbar), click on the item This PC resident in the left sidebar and right click on the icon of the USB stick or the DVD of Windows 11. To conclude, select the Open item from the contextual menu proposed, double-click on the file located in the new window and press the Yes button to start it.Setup.exe

The game is practically done: select the language , the date and currency format and the keyboard layout , enter the Windows product key in your possession, if necessary (if you do not have one yet, click on the words I do not have a product code key , to subsequently activate the operating system), specifies that you want to update Windows and indicates whether to keep personal files and apps , whether to save only personal files or whether to keep nothing . By choosing the latter option, you will be asked to specify the disk on which to install the new copy of the operating system.

Once the configuration phase is complete, confirm your willingness to proceed and wait for the upgrade to Windows 11 to complete automatically (and after several restarts); if you have chosen to update while leaving data and settings intact, at the next login you will be able to log in with the previously configured account. If not, you will be asked to do the initial setup of the operating system. For more information on this, check out my tutorial on how to upgrade to Windows 11.

Should the update procedure get stuck due to a total lack of the minimum requirements (e.g. absence of any TPM controller and / or Secure Boot), you will instead have to proceed using a script or a USB key created with Rufus: you will find everything explained in the chapter next of this guide.

Installation from scratch

If your computer has a processor that is not officially compatible with Windows 11 but has all the other requirements (presence of the TPM 2.0 controller and active Secure Boot), you can perform a clean installation of the new operating system, simply by starting the computer from the installation media created earlier.

Therefore, take the key or the Windows 11 DVD, connect the media to the computer and restart the system : if everything went smoothly, you should be prompted to press a key to boot the computer from DVD / USB . When this happens, perform the aforementioned operation within five seconds of the message appearing, in order to start the Windows 11 installation program . computer system BIOS / UEFI: if you do not know how to do it, I refer you to reading my guide on how to set the BIOS.

In any case, once you have entered the Windows 11 installation program, follow the instructions on the screen to configure the language and enter the product key for activation; if necessary, indicate the version of Windows 11 to be installed from among those available, accept the operating system license and specify that you want to perform a customized installation of Windows.

At this point, select the disk or partition on which to install Windows 11, format it using the appropriate option and wait patiently for the copying and installation of the necessary files to be completed. Finally, proceed with the first configuration of the operating system, as I have indicated to you in this tutorial.

If, at some point in the installation, you see an error regarding the inability to upgrade to Windows 11 due to the absence of the minimum requirements, it means that your computer does not have the TPM 2.0 controller and / or the Secure Boot system. In this case, you need to configure the Windows registry to bypass the checks on the next attempt.

As? I’ll explain it to you right away. To start, click on the arrow visible in the upper left corner of the Windows installation screen (the one in which the error message is present), press the key combination Shift + F10 on the keyboard and, when the Command Prompt , issue the command regedit.exein it and give OK .

Now, open the path HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\Setup\, right-click on the Setup folder and select the New> Key items from the proposed context menu; then assign the name LabConfig to the key and enter Enter to create it. Then, right-click on this last key, select the entries New> DWORD (32-bit) value and assign the name BypassTPMCheck to the value . Now, double click on the newly created DWORD, set the Value data field to 1 and click on the OK button .

The value just defined is used to bypass the presence check of the TPM controller; if you wish, you can create other values ​​in the LabConfig key and set their values ​​to 1 , in a very similar way to what we saw previously, to overcome other restrictions. The names to assign are: BypassRAMCheck , to pass the RAM check; BypassSecureBootCheck , to circumvent that of Secure Boot; and BypassStorageCheck , to skip the storage space check.

Once you’ve made the necessary changes, close both the Windows Registry Editor and Command Prompt and proceed with installing the operating system exactly where you left off.

If, for some reason, it is not possible for you to follow the above procedure, you can create a pre-packaged Windows 11 USB drive, already containing a script necessary to circumvent the controls: you will find everything explained in this section.

How to install Windows 11 on unsupported PCs via script

If you have not been able to proceed with the Windows update following the official procedure, since there is no type of TPM controller on your computer , you can easily cope with this using a particular script included in the Universal Media Creation Tool utility : if I had never heard of it, it is an open source software – and therefore safe, at least at the time of writing – initially intended for downloading Windows 10 images. Over time, UMCT has been enriched with useful additional functions, including the ability to bypass the requirements check for Windows 11 altogether.

To download the program, open this Internet page and click on the Code and Download ZIP items ; once you have obtained the archive containing the program, extract it in a folder of your choice, access it and go to . Now, double click on the file , press the Yes button (if required) and wait a few seconds for the script to perform its duty.MediaCreationTool.bat-main > bypass11 SKIP_TPM_Check_on_Dynamic_Update.cmd

Once the utility has finished running, the system should be ready for installation of the operating system, which you can start in the same way as seen in the previous chapter of this guide.

If you have problems using UMCT, you can achieve the same result with Rufus , a program for creating bootable USB sticks: the latest version of the software, in fact, includes an option that allows you to change the Windows ISO so that it bypasses most of the checks provided during the update or installation phase: presence of the TPM module and presence of UEFI with Secure Boot active.

So, get the Windows 11 ISO image as I explained to you in the initial chapter of this guide, download Rufus (you have to connect to this website and then click on the Rufus xy link located immediately below the Download box ) and, after starting it , connect the USB key to your computer and press the Select button to load the Windows 11 ISO downloaded earlier. Afterwards, configure the program like this.

  • Device / Drive : The drive letter of the USB stick.
  • Image Option: Extended Windows 11 Installation (no TPM / no Secure Boot).
  • Partition scheme : MBR.
  • Target system : BIOS (or UEFI CSM).
  • File System : NTFS.
  • Cluster size : 4096 bytes (Default).

Now, click on the item View advanced formatting options and put the check mark next to the items Quick format , Create extended label and icon file and set the drop-down menu Test drive bad blocks check on the 1 step option . Finally, aware that all the data on the USB key will be deleted , click on the Start button and OK , to create the drive containing Windows 11. In case of doubts or problems, consult this tutorial, for in-depth information about the use of Rufus.

Once the creation of the USB key is complete, you can use it to install the operating system from scratch, or to start the update from Windows 10, exactly as if you were performing the official procedure.

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