After almost a decade the Microsoft has finally unveiled Windows 11 but it may not be a smooth transition for everyone out there as according to the latest reports, the latest version of windows may not work with many of the older PCs. If you want to know if your PC is compatible with Windows 11, read on…
Some time back an article by Goa Prism had reported that Microsoft will no longer be providing support to Windows 7, Windows 10, and other such existing versions of the OS. At the time, it was also hinting towards the reveal of an all-new OS, perhaps Windows 11.
Well, the day has come and how! While all the tech-lovers awaited the announcement with their hearts set on a better, more efficient, upgraded version of their beloved Windows, that is what they have got but it comes for a big price! Figuratively.
Windows 11 set-up is going to leave behind several millions of computers across the world, for it is compatible only with a whole new generation of computers! That’s right, if your PC is not a Zen 2 or Intel 8th Gen, then it has lost the race well before it even begins. This seems reasonable in terms of its RAM and CPU needs.
The concession is the bare minimum, even the users with exceptional 7th Gen computers which are compatible with most games, and which meet the GHz and core count requirements of Windows 11 still won’t stand a chance. The TPM 2.0 (which is an international standard for secure crypto processors) requirement will also force people to change their motherboards if they don’t have the chip on them!
The one question on everyone’s mind is, why did Microsoft apply such a generational cut-off? This comes as a first-time move for the software giant. In both its previous versions, whether Windows 8 or Windows 10, it had a basic 1GHz regardless of which generation of processor it was.
So far, Microsoft on its own did not do much to explain why it had taken this step. Several people who were looking forward to enjoying the new version and its benefits reached out to Microsoft with their questions. An understanding of the statements given by them, made clear by their recent history, makes it clear that the biggest factor for such a change was Security.
Windows 11 comes with a big security benefit with secure boot and other virtualization technologies. As per The Verge which is an American technology news website operated by Vox Media, with the combination of TPM with some of the virtualization technologies Microsoft uses in Windows, there come some understandable security benefits.
Needless to mention, these protection systems need modern hardware in order to be enabled, and Microsoft has been working towards this moment for years. TPM support has been a requirement for OEMs to earn Windows certification since Windows 10 was released, but Microsoft hasn’t forced businesses or consumers to enable it.
Going back to the question of its recent history, Microsoft has been in the news for its operating system being constantly hit by malware and ransomware attacks, and it is imperative that Microsoft’s hardware security keeps upgrades too, take place in tandem with its software if these attacks are to be prevented.
Microsoft claims that a combination of Windows Hello, Device Encryption, virtualization-based security, Hypervisor Protected Code Integrity (HVCI), and Secure Boot “has been shown to reduce malware by 60 percent”.
But in the end of its new host of rules and requirements, Microsoft also stated an exception. “Windows 11 does not use the hardware compliance check for virtualized instances during setup or upgrade,” states a Microsoft document (PDF) on the minimum hardware requirements for Windows 11. In simpler terms, if someone is running Windows 11 on a Virtual Machine (VM), they can ignore the CPU and security requirements.
However, this does not do very much for the disappointed customer because the reality is that most consumer and commercial customers won’t be running Windows 11 in a VM. Therefore, the exception does not go against their big security push in practical terms.
With that, Microsoft also announced that they are yet to test Windows 11 and will accommodate “any adjustments” that have come to the fore from the preview feedback. But the truth is, in the future, we as consumers should have our minimum system requirements.
Due to this, there sure does exist some breathing space for the company. It will give enough time for testers to toy with Windows 11 without the hassle of these new hardware restrictions. However, those testing it on an older generation PC that is not on Microsoft’s list of exceptions will most likely have to reinstall Windows 10 at the end of the trial period.
Making some concessions for the massive community of its users, Microsoft offered some clarity on its stance. They have declared that they will test devices running on 7th GEN and AMD ZEN to check for their compatibility with the new security principles. While also making it clear that these models are about as far as they will stretch. Intel’s 6th gen chips and AMD’s pre-Zen chips don’t meet Microsoft’s minimum criteria.
As the movie is lauded by some for the enhanced security benefits and hardware up-gradation that it will push for, critics of Microsoft’s approach are irked by the colossal e-waste that would likely be generated as a result of a mass consumer transition from older to newer PCs.