How to upgrade to Windows 11 23H2

You can upgrade your computer to Windows 11 23H2 in four different ways, and in this guide, you'll learn how.

Windows 11 23H2 upgrade
Windows 11 23H2 upgrade

UPDATED 11/2/2023: Windows 11 23H2 (2023 Update) is available starting October 31, 2023. If you plan to upgrade a device running Windows 11 22H2 or Windows 10, you will have to use Windows Update, the official ISO file, or Installation Assistant. You can also use the Windows Insider Program to upgrade a device while the feature update is still in preview.

This release represents the second major release of Windows 11, and it’s an optional update that delivers several new features, visual changes, and improvements to enhance productivity and continue making the experience more consistent.

Although it isn’t a good idea to rush and install a new feature update as soon as it becomes available to avoid potential bugs and other problems during the early days, you can upgrade manually in at least four ways using the different tools and Windows Update. If you have a device running version 22H2, the recommended upgrade method is Windows Update since version 23H2 will be delivered as a cumulative update without the need for reinstallation. If you use any other tool, you will be doing an in-place upgrade that will reinstall the operating system.

If you are still on Windows 10, you can upgrade directly to Windows 11 23H2. However, you must check the hardware meets the minimum requirements. You’ll need an Intel 8th Gen or AMD Zen 2 or newer or Qualcomm 7 and 8 Series processor. This is in addition to the requirements of TPM 2.0 and Secure Boot and a minimum of 64GB of storage. 

In this guide, I will teach you four ways to upgrade to the Windows 11 2023 Update. You can also upgrade the system using a clean installation in six ways.

Warning: If you plan to upgrade an existing system, it is also recommended to create a backup before proceeding.

Upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 from Windows Update

To upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 manually from Windows Update, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 11.

  2. Click on Windows Update.

  3. Click the “Check for updates” button.

    Windows 11 check for updates

  4. Turn on the “Get the latest updates as soon as they’re available” toggle switch.

  5. Click the “Download & install” button to install Windows 11 23H2.

    Windows Update version 23H2 download

  6. Click the Restart now button.

After you complete the steps, the setup will upgrade the system to version 23H2.

Upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 from ISO file

To upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 from Windows 11 22H2 or Windows 10 with an ISO file, use these steps:

  1. Open Microsoft Support website.

  2. Under the “Download Windows 11 Disk Image (ISO)” section, select the Windows 11 option.

  3. Click the Download button.

    Windows 11 ISO download

  4. Select the installation language.

  5. Click the Confirm button.

  6. Click the Download button to save the Windows 11 23H2 ISO file.

  7. Right-click the ISO file and select the Mount option.

    Mount ISO file in File Explorer

  8. Click on the mounted drive from the left navigation pane.

  9. Double-click the Setup file to begin the Windows 11 23H2 upgrade process.

  10. (Optional) Click the “Change how Windows Setup downloads updates” option.

  11. Select the “Not right now” option.

    Disable updates during installation

  12. Click the Next button.

  13. Click the Accept button to agree to the terms.

    Media Creation Tool settings

  14. Click the Install button to upgrade to version 23H2 while keeping your files and apps.

If you want to start fresh with a clean installation of Windows 11 23H2, click the “Change what to keep” option, select the “Nothing” option, the “Next” button, and then the “Install” button.

Once you complete the steps, the Windows 11 2023 Update upgrade will start preserving your settings, apps, and files.

Upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 from Installation Assistant

The Installation Assistant makes it easier to force the upgrade of version 23H2 on devices running an older version of Windows 11 or Windows 10.

To upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 with the Installation Assistant tool, use these steps:

  1. Open Microsoft Support website.

  2. Under the “Windows 11 Installation Assistant” section, click the Download Now button.

  3. Double-click the Windows11InstallationAssistant.exe file to launch the tool.

    Windows 11 Update Assistant

  4. Click the “Accept and install” button to begin the upgrade to Windows 11 23H2.

After you complete the steps, the setup will continue with the upgrade to the latest operating system release, in this case, Windows 11 23H2.

Upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 from Insider Program

It’s important to note that after October 31, 2023, you should update through the Windows Update settings, Media Creation Tool, or Installation Assistant. In the case that those methods don’t work, then you can try using the Insider Program with the Release Preview Channel. 

To upgrade to Windows 11 23H2 early from version 22H2, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on Windows Update.

  3. Click the Windows Insider Program tab.

    Windows Insider Program

  4. Click the Get started button.

    Windows 11 Insider start enroll

  5. Click the “Link an account” button.

    Microsoft account enroll Insider program

  6. Sign in with a Microsoft account.

  7. Click the Continue button.

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

    Windows 11 23H2 preview

  9. Click the Continue button.

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

  11. Click the Restart button.

  12. Open Settings after the reboot.

  13. Click on Windows Update.

  14. Click the “Check for updates” button to download the latest preview of Windows 11 23H2.

  15. Click the Restart button.

Once you complete the steps, Windows Update will download and upgrade the device to Windows 11 23H2.

After the upgrade, you can gracefully remove the computer from the program from the “Windows Insider Program” settings page to prevent upgrading to the next version by turning on the “Stop getting preview builds” toggle switch.

On October 10, Microsoft released the update KB5031354 through the “Windows Update” settings for version 22H2, which includes most of the features for version 23H2, meaning that after installing this update, even though your device will still read as version 22H2, you will have access to most of the new features and changes. However, you can still enroll your device in the Release Preview Channel to download version 23H2, which includes everything from the update KB5031354, plus additional improvements.

Update September 25, 2023: The update available on September 26, 2023, only enables some of the features for version 23H2 (including Copilot, Windows Backup, redesigned File Explorer, updated Settings, Dynamic Lighting, and others). However, the system will continue to show version 22H2 on the About settings page. Once Microsoft completes this rollout, at a later time, before the end of 2023, another update will become available to finish deploying the rest of the feature update and switch the system from version 22H2 to 23H2. After this point, the company is expected to update the Media Creation Tool, Installation Assistant, and ISO file. Also, devices with older releases of the operating system may be able to update directly to version 23H2 from Windows Update.

Update October 17, 2023: The update available on September 26 was an optional non-security update for version 22H2. The same update then became KB5031354 as a mandatory installation on October 10. The features included with this package were previously expected to be part of version 23H2 (2023 Update), but the company decided to make it part of version 22H2. However, the Windows 11 2023 Update will also install all the new features from the October update, plus additional improvements. Also, the update will change the version number and mark the support cycle for the new version, which is 24 months for Windows 11 Home and Pro and 36 months for Enterprise and Education.

Update October 31, 2023: This guide has been updated to reflect that version 23H2 has been released, and it’s ready for installation.

Update November 2, 2023: This guide now adds a video tutorial with installation process of the update.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me.