Windows 11 compatibility: How to find out if your PC can handle Microsoft’s upgrade

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Microsoft will phase out Windows 10 support over the next few years, so it’s important to make sure your device supports Windows 11.

Sarah Tew/CNET

 dropped this week (here’s our full ) and it came with significant compatibility questions. The question of compatibility has been on a lot of PC users’ minds since Microsoft unveiled its  in six years this summer. Fortunately, Windows 11 should work with most PCs, . However, though has finally arrived, even compatible devices won’t necessarily get the upgrade yet — Microsoft says you might have to wait until mid-2022 to .

Annoyingly, Microsoft’s own tool for determining device compatibility — the  — wasn’t up to par when Microsoft first announced Windows 11 earlier this year (there were reports it didn’t give people enough information about why their devices weren’t compatible), so the company temporarily removed the app. But Microsoft’s PC Health Check is now back online and in working order. The app will tell you if your computer meets the requirements to run Windows 11 —  and provide links for more support.

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But that’s not the only way to check if your device will work with the free Windows 11 update. Read on for all of your options for checking Windows 11 device compatibility. With the finally here (remember, however, that it’ll be a ), it’s a good idea to check your own computer. If your device doesn’t meet eligibility requirements, you may need to as over the next several years. 

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Option 1: Use Microsoft’s PC Health Check app to see if your computer can run Windows 11

Follow these steps to test whether your PC meets the system requirements for Windows 11. 

1. . Open the file, agree to the terms of service and click Install. Make sure the box is checked that says Open PC Health Check, and click Finish. 

Here’s what you’ll see after running the updated Microsoft PC Health Check app, if your device is not compatible with Windows 11.


2. The app home page that pops up says, “PC health at a glance.” At the top, a box reads, “Introducing Windows 11.” Click Check now. 

If your machine isn’t compatible, you’ll get a message that says, “,” with more information below. 

If your machine is compatible, you can . The official , but Microsoft is planning a staggered rollout, and many devices will not see the upgrade until 2022.

Option 2: Try the WhyNotWin11 app to check Windows 11 compatibility

An open-source app called is a good alternative to the PC Health Check app. The Github app, created by a developer not affiliated with Microsoft, has a less friendly interface, but it should give you more information and go into more detail about various potential compatibility issues. to determine your own device compatibility with Windows 11.

Option 3: Check Microsoft’s list of system specifications for Windows 11

To determine if your current PC will be able to run Windows 11, you can on Microsoft’s website, or in the chart below. If your machine is compatible, you can when it becomes available.

What are the system requirements to run Windows 11?

Here’s the , including at least 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage and a 720p display larger than 9 inches diagonally.

Windows 11 requirements




1GHz or faster with 2 or Zig et Sharko more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or system on a chip




64GB or larger storage device

System firmware

UEFI, Secure Boot capable


Trusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0

Graphics card

Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver


HD (720p) display greater than 9 inches diagonally, 8 bits per color 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

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