Bottom line: Following the release of the first Windows 11 Insider Build, Microsoft has unveiled the guiding principles that it says were used to develop the minimum system requirements for Windows 11. While most of the highlights are not unexpected, there are good news for older PCs, specifically those running Intel Kaby Lake or AMD Zen 1 chips. Oh, and Microsoft’s official PC health check tool that seemed unfinished and caused even more confusion? That will temporarily disappear until a better version comes out alongside the general release of Windows 11 this fall.
Windows 11 has a lot at stake on the software side: native Android support with side download, a revamped store, better multitasking, new Start button and menus. However, Microsoft’s rather strict hardware requirements for its next-gen operating system were arguably more surprising (and confusing), as it left a large number of users on Windows 10 and earlier, mostly thanks to TPM.
With the first preview of Windows 11 released for Insiders, it now looks like Microsoft could expand the list of Officially supported CPU for Windows 11 adding another (older) generation of Intel and AMD chips. Currently, that baseline is Intel’s 8th Gen Coffee Lake chips and AMD’s Zen 2 chips.
in a blog post Outlining the security, reliability and compatibility principles that led to the Windows 11 minimum PC requirements, Microsoft notes that it will “test to identify devices running on Intel 7th Gen and AMD Zen 1” with Insiders and OEMs. If these CPUs perform acceptably during the testing phase, expect them to appear on the officially supported hardware list.
Microsoft plans to share the results of its tests over time. In addition, the company says it is retiring the PC Health Check application after acknowledging that the tool was “not fully prepared to share the level of detail or precision” that Windows 10 users expected. Hopefully, it will have something on par with WhyNotWindows11 by the time a revised version of the official app is released alongside Windows 11 later this year.