Windows 11 Hardware Requirements Fiasco

Grab your popcorn, this is getting good! Microsoft has updated the PC Health Checker tool, because it’s giving out incorrect results, removed conflicting pages on Windows 11 hardware requirements (soft and hard floors) and it appears Windows 11 doesn’t enforce ANY hardware requirements when running from a virtual machine. I finally found the source about Windows 11 not checking hardware requirements for virtual machines as given by the tweet below.

It appears that Microsoft is artificially imposing hardware limits for Windows 11. There could be two things happening here. Either Microsoft is drawing a line in the sand and doesn’t want to support any computers made before August 2017 or they are pushing OEMs to enable TPM 2.0 and UEFI/Secureboot out-of-the-box and then will relax these restrictions sometime in 2022 when Windows 11 adoption numbers fall below expectations.

You have to be thinking that IT departments aren’t very happy right now, being told that Windows 10 was the “last Windows ever” and being able to deploy new versions of Windows 10 via feature upgrades and now possibly they have to wipe and reload everything again to move to Windows 11 because their computers weren’t setup properly for Secureboot/TPM 2.0.

Well, that was quick. Some german guy named Deskmodder found these registry keys to skip the TPM and SecureBoot requirements for Windows 11:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\Setup\LabConfig]
"BypassTPMCheck"=dword:00000001
"BypassSecureBootCheck"=dword:00000001

Whether these keys stick around in 2022 is yet to be seen.

  • Soli Deo Gloria

Windows 11 Confirmed

I watched the Windows 11 live stream from Microsoft today. There was a few interesting tidbits, such as it will be free upgrade for Windows 10 users (not unexpected), will only come in a 64-bit version (32-bit version is gone) and requires UEFI/Secureboot/TPM 2.0. A lot of people are hyperventilating over the TPM 2.0 requirement, but we are roughly 6 months away from the release of Windows 11 and I have no doubt that this requirement will either be relaxed or a workaround will be found.

Installing the leaked Windows 11 dev build was blocked by Microsoft from installing on bare metal and within days, people figured out how to copy all of the files from the Windows 10 sources folder from the install media and then just overwrite the Windows 10 WIM file with the Windows 11 WIM file and viola, all restrictions were removed. The TPM 2.0 requirement was already bypassed for this build by replacing appraiserres.dll with one from Windows 10. Heck, WinNTSetup will probably have a tick box to just remove the requirement.

The 32-bit version should have been removed a long time ago. If you have something that requires Windows 32-bit (for the 16-bit subsystem support), you should probably be running an emulator for that program or leave it on an older OS. The last time I had to install Windows 32-bit was back in June 2014 for a company we bought from Baldor Generators. There was 1 guy that had to run a MS-DOS program and MS-DOS programs only work on Windows 32-bit (without emulation), so we had to revert his Windows 64-bit back to Windows 32-bit.

However, if I had to do it over again, I would just run winevdm or DOSBOX to run his MS-DOS program and leave him on Windows 64-bit. There’s even more options such as VMWare Workstation, I think it’s finally time to drop MS-DOS support for programs that were created 40 years ago.

  • Soli Deo Gloria