It’s official: Windows 11 will be released on October 5, 2021. Microsoft’s new operating system will be installed on new PCs from major brands and gradually offered as a free download for others.
This time, for sure: Windows 11 will arrive on October 5, 2021. Microsoft officially announced it on August 31 in a statement, thus putting an end to the suspense and the rumors – too bad for those who had bet on a release on the 11th. November, for the symbolism of 11/11… It must be recognized that this new operating system for PC has caused much ink to flow since its official presentation on June 24, raising questions but also concerns, in particular on its compatibility (see our Windows 11 article: new features, release date, TMP 2.0 compatibility, update, price… for more information). However, this announcement is a bit surprising since Windows 11 is still in the testing phase through the Windows Insider program. One would imagine that Microsoft is still advancing in its development before releasing it into the wild.
What is the official release date for Windows 11?
In practice, Windows 11 will be released on October 5 in two forms. On the one hand, Microsoft’s new operating system will be preinstalled at the factory on most new PCs from major brands, such as Dell, which has already confirmed it. On the other hand, Windows 11 will be offered for download for a free update from Windows 10, as planned from the start.
However, be careful. First, the switch to Windows 11 from Windows 10 can only be done on compatible computers. This is the subject that fueled the controversy and the grumbling all summer, because of the very strict requirements of Microsoft in the matter because only the PCs equipped with a recent processor with the TMP 2.0 security module are eligible (for to find out more on this point, see our practical sheets Checking the compatibility of a PC with Windows 11 and Choosing a new PC compatible with Windows 11). Then, the deployment of Windows 11 will be done very gradually, over several months. The free update won’t be available to everyone as of October 5, with Microsoft wanting to roll it out until mid-2022. It will therefore be necessary to be patient in certain cases … Finally, and above all, Windows 11 will not arrive in its full version on the day of its release. Without drawing up an exhaustive list, Microsoft has already announced that some promised functions such as compatibility with Android applications will be absent from the first version to be gradually integrated into subsequent updates, at dates still unknown. Absences which could generate some disappointment, but which will not detract from the more visible innovations of Windows 11, in particular its modernized interface, its improved ergonomics and its many rejuvenated system applications (Paint, Notepad, etc.).
How to get Windows 11?
To quickly take advantage of Windows 11, you will have to either buy a new PC from October 5, or install an update, when it is available – and provided you have a compatible computer, of course. But there are other ways to get a taste of Windows 11 now, including signing up for Microsoft’s famous Windows Insider testing program for free. Better still, it has recently been possible to recover an ISO image from a preview of Windows to install it more easily on a PC (Download an ISO of Windows 11).
Meanwhile, in the face of anger over its hardware requirements, Microsoft recently said it would be possible to install Windows 11 on incompatible PCs. The operation, which is already possible with a few hacks, will however be done without any guarantee and, above all, at the user’s own risk. Indeed, on old computers, Windows 11 will not be able to benefit from security updates, which could pose serious problems on a daily basis when we know the number and severity of critical vulnerabilities regularly discovered in current systems, in particular Windows 10 which still suffers from serious vulnerabilities. In short, a fragile solution, to be reserved for informed and experienced users.