You can upgrade... but Windows Update may not workApparently, Microsoft will only stop you from installing Windows 11 on older PCs if you try to upgrade through Windows Update. Systems with a CPU that don't meet the minimum requirements can be upgraded to Windows 11 if you download the ISO file from Microsoft's website and install it manually.
However, there is a major caveat. Microsoft warns that users who install Windows 11 on unsupported systems may not get further updates. The software giant says it can't guarantee that support, even security updates, if you use this loophole to install Windows 11.
Microsoft announced its Windows 11 minimum hardware requirements in June, and made it clear that only Intel 8th Gen and beyond CPUs were officially supported. Microsoft now tells us that this install workaround is designed primarily for businesses to evaluate Windows 11, and that people can upgrade at their own risk as the company can’t guarantee driver compatibility and overall system reliability. Microsoft won’t be recommending or advertising this method of installing Windows 11 to consumers. In fact, after we published this post, Microsoft reached out to tell us about one potentially gigantic catch it didn’t mention during our briefing: systems that are upgraded this way may not be entitled to get Windows Updates, even security ones. We’re asking Microsoft for clarification.On a related note, Microsoft has also updated the minimum requirements to include more CPUs. Engadget writes Intel’s Core X-series and Xeon W-series will now be officially supported, as well as Intel’s Core 7820HQ chip that’s inside the Surface Studio 2. AMD's first-generation Zen processors are still a no go. Microsoft says it tested the first Ryzen series but the software giant deems this series as "not good enough" for a good and safe Windows 11 experience.