How to Install Windows 11 on your computer/Laptop
Here is how to download Microsoft's latest OS, check system requirements and install windows 11 on your computer or laptop for free.
Despite the fact that Microsoft promised that Windows 10 would be its last Windows, on October 5, 2021, its successor arrived: Windows 11. This is the company’s new operating system, a modern system, updated and with a large number of new features and improvements with which to continue being the leader in desktop PCs. If you want to start using this new system, then we will explain everything you need to know.
What’s new in Windows 11
For most, Windows 11 is nothing more than Windows 10 with a facelift. And it’s true. Although Microsoft has included many internal changes and improvements, the new OS does not bring anything that could not have been implemented in Windows 10. Even some features, which were initially going to be exclusive to Windows 11, end up reaching its predecessor.
The main features that we are going to find in this new operating system are:
- New start menu. A much more minimalist menu that says goodbye to the “tiles” and where the important thing is the applications, the recent files and the search engine.
- New taskbar. This now has the icons centered by default (although we can move them to the left), and it is much more limited in functions, not being able to move it to another place or drag programs, files or folders to it.
- Round corners! : Windows 11 brings us rounded corners everywhere. We can see them in the menus, in the windows, in the buttons of many applications… the rectangles in Windows are over.
- New context menus: Now when we right-click anywhere in the system, the context menu is much simpler, it has the essential options, and of course round corners.
- New app store. The Microsoft Store is completely renewed. In addition to a new interface, it is open to all kinds of applications (universal, Win32, etc.) and will even allow you to install Android applications on Windows 10.
- New Windows Subsystem for Android. If we have a 10th generation Intel CPU, or later, we can install Android apps and games on Windows 11 and run them thanks to Hyper-V.
- New file explorer. Now they are much more modern, with new icons and new surprises.
- New icons. Likewise, the basic system icons have been changed, which now have a front view instead of being rotated.
- Renewed programs and new applications. We can find a new concentration assistant (with integration with Spotify), and many of the programs that come pre-installed in the OS have been renewed (Paint, Photos, Mail and Calendar, etc).
- New look for the settings menu. Configuring Windows is now much easier than ever thanks to the new menu that is much neater and more organized.
- New gaming features DirectStorage and Auto HDR. These features were exclusive to the new Xbox Series S/X, but they’re finally coming to Windows. The first allows us to take advantage of the speed of NVMe PCIe SSDs to improve performance and reduce game load times, while the second will make HDR better.
Although these changes could have also come to Windows 10, only those who install the new Microsoft OS will be able to enjoy them.
Requirements to install windows 11
One of the most controversial aspects of this new operating system is windows 11 minimum requirements. While Windows 10 maintained the same requirements as Windows 7, the arrival of 11 has marked a before and after, leaving millions of computers in the lurch, obsolete, and without the possibility of installing (at least officially) this new system.
In order to install this OS, our computer must comply with the following:
- CPU: processor with two or more cores, 64-bit, and with a frequency greater than 1 GHz.
- RAM: at least 4 GB of RAM.
- Hard drive or SSD: minimum space of 64 GB on the hard drive, SSD, or the partition where we are going to install the system.
- GPU – A graphics card that supports DirectX 12 technology and the WDDM 2.0 driver.
- Screen: at least 9 inches and HD resolution at 720p.
In addition, there are two other special requirements that are causing the most conflicts among users. On the one hand, this new system requires a UEFI system with Secure Boot to be able to install it on the computer. And, in addition, it is necessary that the motherboard has a TPM 2.0 chip.
Check TPM stats
The TPM 2.0 chip has been a requirement on new computers since 2016, but older computers may not have it. And, in that case, they will not be able to install Windows 11. We can check if our computer has this chip (and, therefore, is compatible with Windows 11) by executing the command “tpm.msc” and analyzing the results of the window that appears (specifically the section “Specification version”).
It may happen that our computer has this chip, but it is disabled in the computer’s UEFI. And the same can happen with Secure Boot. In that case, what we must do is enter the UEFI of the PC (without fear, we are not going to break anything if we do not touch where we should not) and look for both the “Secure Boot” section and the TPM section.
With this, we can apply the changes, restart the computer, and we will be ready to start installing Windows 11. Although first we will have to create an installation medium.
Download the ISO and prepare a USB
Before starting with the installation of the operating system, we are going to see how to create a Windows 11 installation medium. To do this, what we need is to download Windows 11 ISO and have a USB memory, of at least 8 GB, to be able to install the new system on it.
The first thing we are going to see is how to download the ISO of the new operating system. To do this, what we must do is enter the Windows 11 website, and from there download the disk image of the new operating system. It is no longer necessary to use the media creation tool to generate the image as we did with Windows 10.
If we prefer, the media creation wizard still works for this purpose. This tool will allow us, on the one hand, to update our PC directly to the new system (keeping our data) and, on the other hand, to download the ISO and save it on the PC or directly create an installation USB.
If we have selected the option to create an installation USB, then we will have nothing else to do. But if we have downloaded the windows 11 ISO, and we want to install it, we will have to create that USB ourselves. To do this, one of the best tools to burn ISO images to a USB is Rufus.
We download the program from the developer’s website and install it on the PC. We select the USB memory where we want to save the image, and load the ISO of the operating system into the program. Of course, before continuing we must pay attention to the partition system (use GPT) and the destination system (select UEFI). Otherwise, the Windows 11 setup wizard will not work.
Once we already have our USB memory, whatever the method, then we only have to restart the computer, select the new USB memory as a boot drive, and start installing Windows 11.
We remind you that if we have an original Windows 10 key, it will be automatically updated to be valid for Windows 11, so we will not have to buy a new license. If we don’t have an original license, we will be able to use the new OS for a few days for free, but later several functions will be limited, and we will have to introduce, yes or yes, the corresponding license.
how to install windows 11 from USB
We already have our Windows 11 installation USB ready. We connect it, boot the PC from it and the installation process will begin.
We wait a few seconds for Windows to prepare the wizard, and we will be able to see its first screen: the language selection screen.
The first steps of the installation are the same as those of Windows 8 and Windows 10, what mainly changes is the initial configuration wizard of the operating system. We click on “Install now” and we will enter the first part of the installation.
We must wait a few seconds again while the wizard performs a series of configurations and initial checks.
We come to the first step of the installation: the license. If we have a Windows Retail key, we must enter it here. Otherwise, we can click on “I don’t have a product key” to start the installation without the license (although we will have to activate it later). If this window does not appear, it is because we have an original Windows key saved in the UEFI of the PC.
In the next step, what we must do is accept the license terms of the operating system.
Select the edition of windows 11 you are looking for install.
We click on “next” and we will arrive at the point of choosing the type of installation that we want. We can choose to update the system, keep the files and settings, or customize the installation to erase everything and install Windows from scratch. We are going to see this second option.
In this section, what we must do is choose the unit, and the partition, where we want to install the system.
If we don’t want to complicate ourselves, it is best to delete all the partitions of the main disk or SSD, leave everything as “unpartitioned space”, and click on “next” so that Windows itself creates the necessary partitions (boot, recovery, etc.). the system, etc.).
The operating system installation wizard will now start. This wizard is divided into 5 steps:
- Copy the Windows files.
- Prepare the files for installation.
- Install features.
- Install updates.
We have to wait for the whole process to finish. This may take a few minutes, and the PC may reboot several times in the meantime.
Windows will reboot, and start preparing, and installing services, components, devices, etc. This process, again, may take several minutes and may cause the PC to reboot multiple times. Likewise, we continue to wait patiently.
We already have Windows 11 almost installed. But it’s time to set it up.
The first thing we are going to do is choose the country or region from which we are going to use the new Windows.
We choose “United state” (in our case), and in the next step, we will have to choose the keyboard layout that we want to use. Again, in our case, we chose english.
Windows will ask us if we want to add new keyboard layouts. Unless we need them, we skip this step to continue.
The Windows wizard will start to search for important updates automatically (as long as we have Internet).
Next, in the next step, we will have to assign a name to the PC. This name makes our computer unique on the network, and we can easily connect to it from other devices.
Again, the wizard will make some changes, apply the new settings, and then let us continue.
Now comes another of the points that I least like about the installation: create a new user.
Like its predecessors, Windows 11 allows users to use a Microsoft Account as the primary account on the computer, or an offline account, or local account, that isn’t linked to Microsoft. In the “Home” editions, we can only create the local account if we do not have an Internet connection. In the «Pro» we can easily do it from the wizard.
If we use a Microsoft Account, we must enter the username and password to log in. In an offline account, what we will do is choose the username, password, and additional security measures to protect the account.
Be that as it may, the next step will be to create a PIN that allows us to log in quickly and securely without relying on the password.
Once the session is started (in the event that we opt for this option), what we will see will be a simple wizard from which we can restore a backup copy of the PC from OneDrive, or configure it as a new computer.
And, next, we are going to configure everything related to the privacy of the system. First of all, the location.
Choose whether or not we want to use the function to find the lost device.
Select the types of data we want to send and share with Microsoft. We can choose to send only the essentials or optional information that helps in the development of the OS.
Choose if we want to improve handwritten entries and writing.
Do we want to get personalized experiences based on our tastes? We can choose yes or no from here.
Also if we want the applications to be able to access our advertising ID.
Once the previous configurations are complete, the next step will be to choose the personalized experience.
We can choose what we are going to use the PC for and thus Windows will place the most useful icons on the taskbar.
In the next step, we can choose if we want to use OneDrive to save our data, or only save the files locally on the PC.
Clever. We have now reached the end point of the installation. Now Windows will prepare our PC for us in a process that, again, can take a few minutes, but not much more. We wait patiently until the process is finished without restarting the computer.
When the wizard finishes we will see the desktop of the new Windows 11. We can now start using the new operating system, adapt it to our needs and discover, little by little, all its new features. Of course, it may still take a restart or two for all applications to appear at startup correctly.