Windows 11 is launching during the second half of 2021, but not all devices already running Windows 10 or older versions will be compatible to upgrade since the processor requirements are changing.
Microsoft has confirmed that it’s increasing the minimum hardware requirements, including the processors. According to the documentation, Windows 11 will only support Intel Core 8th Gen and higher processors, in addition to some Pentium, Atom, Celeron, and Xeon CPUs.
Windows 11 will also support AMD Ryzen second-generation (including Threadripper) and newer processors, alongside some EPYC and Athlon CPUs. As for ARM support, the new version of Windows will support Qualcomm Snapdragon 850, 7c, 8c, 8cx first and second-generations, and the Microsoft SQ1 and SQ2.
Windows 11 Intel supported processors
- 8th Gen – Coffee Lake.
- 9th Gen – Coffee Lake Refresh.
- 10th Gen – Comet Lake and Ice Lake.
- 11th Gen – Rocket Lake and Tiger Lake.
- Pentium – Gold, and Silver.
- Xeon – Skylake-SP, Cascade Lake-SP, Cooper Lake-SP, Ice Lake-SP
- Supported Intel processors.
Windows 11 AMD supported processors
- Ryzen – 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000.
- Ryzen – Threadripper 2000, 3000, Pro 3000.
- EPYC – 2nd Gen and 3rd Gen.
- Athlon – Gold, Silver, 3xxx, 300x.
- Supported AMD processors.
Windows 11 Qualcomm supported processors
- Snapdragon 850.
- Snapdragon 7c.
- Snapdragon 8c.
- Snapdragon 8cx.
- Snapdragon 8cx (Gen2).
- Microsoft SQ1.
- Microsoft SQ2.
- Supported Qualcomm processors.
Although Microsoft is changing the processor requirements, it does not mean that you won’t be able to upgrade to Windows 11. In some older hardware configurations that are not officially supported, you will receive a warning that installing Windows 11 isn’t recommended, but the operating system should continue to install.
If you are not sure whether your computer will be compatible with Windows 11, the easiest way to find out is using the PC Health Check app.
Alternatively, you can also confirm the processor on your device and check it against the official list to find out if it’s compatible. You can quickly check the processor make and model on Settings > System > About, under the “Device specifications” section.
In addition to the processor, Windows 11 now also requires a TPM 2.0 chip to improve security. As a result, if this hardware isn’t available, the OS won’t install, even if the rest of the hardware is compatible.
You should note that these requirements are not final. Microsoft is expected to keep updating the requirements, which means that in the future we may see more older processors in the compatibility list.