Microsoft initially restricted Windows 11 to the PCs with TPM 2.0, supported CPU and Secure Boot. However, company now allows you to upgrade to Windows 11 with unsupported CPU and TPM 1.2. But Secure Boot restriction is still there. So, to bypass these limitations, you can use Rufus to create bootable Windows 11 USB and clean install Windows 11 on both supported and unsupported hardware/PCs.
Yes, you read it right. Rufus, a famous bootable USB making utility, has extended support for Windows 11 with version 3.16 and newer. So, now you can make bootable USB for Windows 11 to install it on your PC with or without supported hardware. You can even install Windows 11 on legacy BIOS (without UEFI) using Rufus.
Make Bootable USB for Windows 11 – Supported and Unsupported Hardware, UEFI or Legacy BIOS
So, in this tutorial, we will describe the method to create bootable Windows 11 USB disk for both supported and unsupported hardware. Besides that, you can also create Windows 11 USB for Legacy BIOS. This allows you to install Windows 11 on a PC without UEFI. However, Microsoft may restrict Windows updates on unsupported PCs in future. So, it’s your call to go for it or stay with Windows 10.
NOTE: Before proceeding further, make sure to arrange a USB of 8 GB or greater size. You will also need Windows 11 ISO file but don’t worry if you don’t have it. You can download it using Rufus also.
Step 1: Insert USB and Lauch Rufus Utility
First of all, download latest version of Rufus utility from official website. After that, run the downloaded file. Rufus is click-to-run type utility, so, you won’t need to install it on your PC. It will launch automatically as soon as you double-click the downloaded file.
After that, plug-in the USB into your PC. Rufus should automatically detect it. If you have more than one USBs attached to your PC, make sure to select the correct one. Or you can disconnect other USBs to avoid confusion.
Step 2: Download or Select Windows 11 ISO File
Now, in the Boot selection drop-down select “Disk or ISO image (Please select)“. Now, you can browse or download Windows 11 ISO for creating bootable USB. First, we will explain how to download Windows 11 ISO using Rufus.
A) Download Windows 11 ISO using Rufus
NOTE: You can skip this step if you already have downloaded Windows 11 ISO file.
For downloading Windows 11 ISO using Rufus, click on down-arrow within SELECT button and choose DOWNLOAD. It will change the SELECT button to DOWNLOAD button.
Now, click the DOWNLOAD button and you will see a pop-up for downloading Windows 11 ISO. Besides Windows 11, you can also download other versions of Windows. But this tutorial is for Windows 11, so, we have selected Windows 11. After that click Continue.
Next, you will see options for selecting version, edition, language and architecture of Windows 11. After selecting appropriate options, click Download button. We will use this ISO to create bootable Windows 11 USB.
Now, select the destination for Windows 11 ISO file. Browse to your desired destination folder, type a name for Windows 11 ISO and click Save.
Windows 11 ISO size is around 5-6 GB, so, it might take some time to download depending upon your internet speed.
B) Browse and Select Windows 11 ISO File
After downloading the ISO file, change DOWNLOAD button to SELECT button using the down-arrow next to it. Now, click SELECT button and browse to the folder where you have donwloaded Windows 11 ISO file. After that, select Windows 11 ISO file to make bootable USB and click Open.
Step 3: Select Windows 11 Installation Type for Supported or Unsupported Hardware
Now, it’s time to select the type of bootable USB of Windows 11 you want to create. Rufus provides two options based on the hardware you have. You can use PC Health Check app to see if your PC is supported or unsupported. After that, select appropriate option from Image option drop-down.
- For supported hardware (TPM 2.0 + Supported CPU + Secure Boot-UEFI), select “Standard Windows 11 Installation (TPM 2.0 + Secure Boot)“.
- For unsupported hardware (no TPM, unsupported CPU, no Secure Boot – Legacy BIOS), select “Extended Windows 11 Installation (no TPM / no Secure Boot)“.
After that, select the partition scheme you would like to use.
- If you are creating Windows 11 bootable USB for Legacy BIOS (i.e. no UEFI), select MBR from Partition scheme drop-down.
- If your PC supports UEFI (Secure or non-Secure boot), select GPT from the dropdown.
Finally, you are ready with your desired options. Here is a quick look at the options in Rufus for supported and unsupported hardware.
Rufus Options for Supported Hardware:
If you PC has supported hardware for Windows 11, select following options and click START to create bootable Windows 11 USB.
Rufus Options for Unsupported Hardware:
Now, if your PC has unsupported hardware like no TPM, unsupported CPU and no Secure Boot, you can select following options. After that click START button to continue.
Step 4: Create Bootable Windows 11 USB using ISO
As soon as you click START button in previous step, you will see a warning message saying that all the data stored on USB will be wiped. Make sure that you don’t have any important data on USB and click OK.
Rufus will start making bootable USB for Windows 11 based on the selected configuration. It might take 5-10 mins depending upon the performance of your PC.
After the process is complete, you can click CLOSE to exit Rufus utility.
Create Windows 11 Bootable USB using Rufus and Install Windows 11 on Any PC
As you have seen above, Rufus allows you to make bootable Windows 11 USB for both supported and unsupported hardware PCs. So, if you are sure about installing Windows 11 on unsupported PC, you can do so. Just create Windows 11 installation USB using above method and install Windows 11 using it.
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