Microsoft begins removing Windows 11 incompatible computers from the Windows Insider Program. This is not a spontaneous decision. In June, the company said that unsupported devices would be able to test pre-releases of Windows 11 until general availability.
Now, as the October 5 release date approaches, devices that do not meet the minimum system requirements are getting a message saying that the hardware is not eligible to join the Windows 11 Insider Program, and you should reinstall Windows 10.
Although system requirements have been kept virtually the same for a long time, this time around, Microsoft wants to focus on security and other specific features that forced the decision to increase the requirements to Intel 8th-Gen Core, Ryzen 2000, and newer processors. Also, the device will need a UEFI with Secure Boot and TPM 2.0, which are specs that are not available on all computers.
If you happen to receive the unsupported message, you have two paths you can roll back to Windows 10 using a clean installation, or you can continue with the latest preview of Windows 11. However, after October 5, you will no longer receive security or driver updates.
If you have a device running Windows 10, and you were planning to upgrade to Windows 11, but it doesn’t meet the minimum requirements, you will need to upgrade using the Media Creation Tool or ISO file since the upgrade will be blocked from Windows Update.
The only caveat is that you will be installing the new OS in an unsupported state, which means that the device may not receive security, maintenance, or driver updates.