Another upgrade

How to upgrade to Windows 10 21H2, November 2021 Update

Use these steps to install Windows 10 21H2 on a device running version 21H1, 20H2, 2004, 1909, or an older release.

Windows 11 21H2 upgrade

The Windows 10 November 2021 Update (21H2) will be available sometime in November, and you can upgrade to the latest version manually whether it has version 21H1, 20H2, 2004, 1909, or an older release.

While it is not recommended to rush the new feature update to avoid potential bugs and other problems during the early days, you can upgrade manually in at least two ways using Windows Update and the Media Creation Tool.

If you have a device with version 21H1, 20H2, or 2004, the best way to install the 21H2 release is using Windows Update because the new release of Windows 10 is a small update based on version 2004, and you only need an enablement package to upgrade.

However, if the device has version 1909 or an older release, Windows Update will take longer. If you want to force the upgrade, you can use the Media Creation Tool to perform an in-place upgrade, preserving your files, apps, and settings. This process is similar to using Windows Update or the Update Assistant tool.

In this guide, you will learn the steps to upgrade version 21H1, 20H2, 2004, 1909, or an older version to Windows 10 21H2.

Important: These instructions will work whether you are trying to upgrade from version 21H1 to 21H2, 20H2 to 21H2, 2004 to 21H2, or from any other release, including version 1909, back to the original release (such as 1803, 1709, 1703, 1607, 1511, or 1507). Also, Windows 10 21H2 will be available in November. These instructions are meant to help you through the installation once the new version is released, not before.

Upgrade to Windows 10 21H2 from version 21H1

To upgrade to Windows 10 21H2 (November 2021 Update) manually from version 21H1, 20H2, or 2004, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 10.

  2. Click on Update & Security.

  3. Click on Windows Update.

  4. Click the Check for updates button (if applicable).

  5. If your device is compatible with Windows 11, and you have the upgrade notification, click the “Stay on Windows 10 for now” option to get the version 21H2 upgrade option.

    Stay on Windows 10 for now

  6. Under the “Feature update to Windows 10, version 21H2” section, click the Download and Install now button.

    Windows Update 21H2 download

    Quick tip: If the option is not available, likely, the update is not ready for your computer.
  7. Click the Restart now button.

Once you complete the steps, Windows 10 21H2 will install as a regular monthly update on your device without a full reinstallation. 

See also this video tutorial in the Pureinfotech YouTube channel walking you through all the steps to update successfully to the new version.

Windows 10 21H2 preview 

If you want to test version 21H2 before it becomes officially available, you will need to enroll the device in the Release Preview Channel of the Windows Insider Program.

To install the latest preview of Windows 10 21H2, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on Update & Security.

  3. Click on Windows Insider Program.

  4. Click the Get started button.

    Join Windows Insider Program button

  5. Click the Link an account button.

    Link an account option

  6. Sign in with your Microsoft account.

  7. Click the Continue button.

  8. Under the “Pick your Insider settings” section, select the Release Preview option.

  9. Click the Confirm button.

  10. Click the Confirm button to agree to the terms and conditions.

  11. Click the Restart button.

  12. Open Settings after the reboot.

  13. Click on Update & Security.

  14. Click on Windows Update.

  15. Click the Check for updates button.

  16. Under the “Feature update to Windows 10, version 21H2” section, click the Download and Install now button.

    Windows Update 21H2 download

  17. Click the Restart button.

After you complete the steps, the device will install the November 2021 Update, and it will continue to receive updates for the time this release is supported. You can then gracefully opt-out of the program to stop getting builds from the next feature update by turning on the “Stop getting preview builds” toggle switch in the Windows Insider Program settings.

Upgrade to Windows 10 21H2 from version 1909

To upgrade to Windows 10 21H2 from version 1909, use these steps:

  1. Open Microsoft support website.

  2. Under the “Create Windows 10 installation media” section, click the Download tool now button.

  3. Save the installer to the device.

  4. Double-click the MediaCreationTool21H2.exe file to launch the tool.

  5. Click the Accept button.

  6. Select the Upgrade this PC now option.

    Upgrade this PC now

  7. Click the Accept button again.

  8. Select the option to keep your files and apps (unless it’s not already checked).

  9. Click the Install button.

    Media Creation Tool install option

After you complete the steps, the setup will continue upgrading your device to the new release of the operating system.

See also this video tutorial in the Pureinfotech YouTube channel walking you through all the steps to update successfully to the new version.