Windows 11 CPUs
Windows 11 is officially planned to come out January next year, and preview builds have been offered to Windows "Insiders". One of the biggest dramas is that Windows 11 won’t be officially supported on older computer - that includes desktop PCs, laptops and even Surface products.
Another unusual thing is that, Windows 11 has dramatically changed the minimum system requirements, with Microsoft’s official documentation saying that you’ll need newer CPUs, 4GB of RAM (up from 1GB), 64GB of storage (up from 16GB) - yes they want you to have 4x the specs!
Of course, their required computer specs have always come across as impractically low.
During the announcement, Microsoft confirmed Windows 11 will be offered as a free upgrade to Windows 10 computer users. Microsoft's officials initially didn’t provide any details as to what makes a device supported or not. In recent days, Microsoft has published support documents detailing the minimum system CPU requirements.
According to support documents, Windows 11 is only supported if the device is powered by 8th Generation Intel Core processors, AMD Ryzen 2000 or newer CPUs.
If your chips are older than 8th gen, roughly 3 or 4 years, you will not be able to run Windows 11 officially according to Microsoft. In fact, not even all Surface devices will qualify for Windows 11.
So what will happen to PCs not eligible for Windows 11? You can still keep using Windows 10, and they will provide security updates until 2025. Or there ways to hack these hardware requirements, and unofficially install the new operating system. Will that cause problems? At this point, we don't know.
Remember that Windows 11 is still Windows, and we can run the operating system on officially “unsupported” PCs. A few insiders have run Windows 11 on older computers, so it’s clear that devices already running Windows 10 should be able to handle Windows 11 without any dramas - but you never know.
NOTE: Be aware that if you are about to buy a new laptop or desktop, that it may not be supported. Yes, you heard me right, a brand-new computer, right now, may not be compatible! Due to the computer chip shortage over the last few months, manufacturers have been using older generation chips in their computers. (See this article for details https://chnz.co.nz/blogs/129-computer-chips-shortage ) We had one that was only a few months old, but was using a 6th generation Intel chip. If buying, make sure it is an 8th generation Intel or 2nd generation AMD Ryzen or newer. Happy to advise you if you email us the specs of the computer you're looking at.
Look for the blog I'll do in the coming weeks talking about the e-waste this decision from Microsoft is going to cause. If we keep old computers going, we can save the planet one bit at a time. Repairing and reusing your computer is the best option!
NEWFLASH: As of publishing, Microsoft have lowered the requirements for computers by 1 generation. This means 7th generation Intel or 1st generation AMD Ryzen will be supported. This is a small concession and extends the allowable computers by about a year.