- Microsoft is expected to completely remove the SMB1 protocol from Windows 11.
- The insecure protocol will be removed in future releases.
- SMB1 client is now disabled by default on Windows 11 Home.
Microsoft now disables the SMB version 1 (or SMB1) networking feature on Windows 11 22H2, and it plans to remove the file-sharing protocol completely in future updates to improve security.
Server Message Block (SMB) is an old networking file-sharing protocol that allows applications to access files in the network over the TCP/IP protocol.
The company stopped installing SMB1 (server) by default on Windows 10 and Windows Server back in 2017. However, it continued making available the SMB1 (client) service in most editions of the OS to allow users to keep accessing Network Attached Storage (NAS) that still depend on it.
Since it’s not secure and new versions are available (SMB2 and SMB3), Microsoft stopped installing the feature in Pro editions of Windows 10 and Windows 11, and now, the company will stop shipping SMB1 on Windows 11 Home.
If you install the latest preview build of Windows 11 Pro in the Dev Channel, the SMB1 can no longer be installed.
“This means there is no edition of Windows 11 Insider that has any part of SMB1 enabled by default anymore,” the company explains. “This doesn’t affect in-place upgrades of machines where you were already using SMB1. SMB1 is not gone here. An admin can still intentionally reinstall it,” Microsoft continues.
Furthermore, the company plans to remove all the Server Message Block version 1 binaries in future releases of Windows 11. If the cast that the protocol is still needed to access legacy devices in the network after the binaries are removed, you will need to install “an out-of-band unsupported install package” manually.
Microsoft also explains that it has left the “Home” edition for last because it’ll be an issue for users that are still using old devices that require this protocol since they’re “least likely to understand why their new Windows 11 laptop can’t connect to their old networked hard drive.”