Windows 11 system requirements: recommended and additional PC requirements to install Windows 11 for free

Windows 11 download will be available to all Windows 10 users, so long as their computer is compatible.

Windows 11 system requirements: Microsoft Windows 11 has officially been launched as the first major update to Windows since the launch of Windows 10 back in 2015. Apart from several visual changes, Windows 11 also comes with a slew of interesting features like Android app support and customised widgets support. You can read more about Windows 11 features here. The Windows 11 download will be available to all Windows 10 users, so long as their PC is compatible. Here’s a quick look at Windows 11 system requirements – recommended as well as additional – to install the newly-launched OS for free.

Read more: How to download Windows 11 on PC before the official rollout begins

Windows 11 system requirements: recommended

Windows 11 is said to be compatible with a vast majority of laptops and PCs out there. That said your PC/ laptop needs to meet these specific requirements:

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 64GB or larger storage device
  • System firmware: UEFI, Secure Boot capable
  • TPM: Trusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0
  • Graphics card: Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver
  • Display: HD (720p) display greater than 9 inches diagonally, 8 bits per colour channel
  • Internet connection and Microsoft account: For Windows 11 Home edition: internet connectivity; Microsoft account to complete device setup on first use For all Windows 11 editions: internet access to perform updates and to download and use some features; Microsoft account for some features

These are the basic requirements for installing Windows 11 on a PC. If your system doesn’t meet these recommended requirements, you’ll probably need to replace your PC or laptop by 2025 as Microsoft has plans to phase out Windows 10 support by then. Additionally, the company has also released feature-specific system requirements for Windows 11. Check out these additional Windows 11 system requirements below

Windows 11 system requirements: additional

  • 5G capable modem for 5G
  • HDR monitor for Auto HDR
  • BitLocker to Go requires a USB flash drive (available in Windows Pro and above editions)
  • Client Hyper-V requires a processor with second-level address translation (SLAT) capabilities (available in Windows Pro and above editions).
  • Cortana requires a microphone and speaker and is currently available on Windows 11 for Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, United Kingdom, and the United States.
  • DirectStorage requires an NVMe SSD to store and run games that use the “Standard NVM Express Controller” driver and a DirectX12 GPU with Shader Model 6.0 support.
  • DirectX 12 Ultimate is available with supported games and graphics chips.
  • Presence requires a sensor that can detect human distance from the device or intent to interact with the device.
  • Intelligent Video Conferencing requires a video camera, microphone, and speaker (audio output).
  • Multiple Voice Assistant (MVA) requires a microphone and speaker.
  • Snap three-column layouts require a screen that is 1920 effective pixels or greater in width.
  • Mute/Unmute from Taskbar requires a video camera, microphone, and speaker (audio output). The app must be compatible with the feature to enable global mute/unmute.
  • Spatial Sound requires supporting hardware and software.
  • Teams require a video camera, microphone, and speaker (audio output).
  • Touch requires a screen or monitor that supports multi-touch.
  • Two-factor authentication requires the use of a PIN, biometric (fingerprint reader or illuminated infrared camera), or a phone with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capabilities.
  • Voice Typing requires a PC with a microphone.
  • Wake on Voice requires a Modern Standby power model and microphone.
  • Wi-Fi 6E requires new WLAN IHV hardware and driver and a Wi-Fi 6E capable AP/router.
  • Windows Hello requires a camera configured for near-infrared (IR) imaging or a fingerprint reader for biometric authentication. Devices without biometric sensors can use Windows Hello with a PIN or a portable Microsoft compatible security key.
  • Windows Projection requires a display adapter that supports Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) 2.0 and a Wi-Fi adapter that supports Wi-Fi Direct.
  • Xbox (app) requires an Xbox Live account, which is not available in all regions. See Xbox Live Countries and Regions for the most up-to-date information on availability. Some features in the Xbox app will require an active Xbox Game Pass subscription.

Lastly, to keep Windows 11 up-to-date make sure that you have enough free storage space to install updates and your hardware is still supported by your Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM).

How to check if your laptop can run Windows 11

If you are unsure whether your PC meets these requirements, you can use Microsoft’s PC health check. It’ll scan your system to check whether or not your computer meets Windows 11 recommended system requirements.

Windows 11 system requirements
  • To do so, download Microsoft’s Health Check on your PC
  • Open the file, agree to the terms and conditions, and choose install
  • Check the box next to ‘Open PC Health Check’ and hit Finish
  • After this, select the ‘Check now’ button next to Introducing Windows 11 on the home page of the app that says PC health at a glance
  • This will scan your computer

If your machine is not compatible, you’ll get a message that says, “This PC will not run Windows 11.” The app will also provide you with detailed information on what Windows 11 system requirements were not met. The free upgrade will begin to roll out to eligible Windows 10 PCs this holiday and continuing into 2022.