The wait is finally over, folks! Windows 11 has been finaly released to the public and you can now upgrade your PC for free from Windows 10 with a valid licence. The new OS brings along numerous changes like the ability to install Android apps, frosted glass UI, new Start menu, and a lot more.
If you’re looking to upgrade your PC manually, then here’s how you can get the latest ISO on your system.
How to download Windows 11 ISO and install Windows 11 using the ISO
Microsoft has made the Windows 11 ISO files available for download for anyone who wants to install Windows 11 that way. Well, not just anyone. There are certain requirements that you (and your PC) must meet first.
Windows 11 Requirements
- Ensure that you are on Windows 10 v2004 or higher.
- Ensure that you meet the basic requirements for installing Windows 11 on your system.
- Ensure that you have at least 9GB of free disk space on your system so that you can download Windows 11 on your local storage using the Assistant.
- Ensure that you run the Installation Assistant as an administrator.
- Processor: 1GHz or faster with 2 or more cores.
- RAM: 4GB or higher
- Graphics: DX12 compatible with WDDM 2.0 driver
- Disk Space: 64GB free space on the drive you want to install Windows 11 on
- System: UEFI, with Secure Boot
- TPM: 2.0 or higher
- Display: 720p @ 8bits or higher
Step 1: Download the official Windows 11 ISO
To download the official Windows 11 ISO file, click on the link given below.
- Download: Windows 11 Official Release ISO
On the page, scroll down to the bottom and click on ‘Select Download’ to reveal the available download options.
Select ‘Windows 11’.
Click on Download now.
Then select the product language from the drop-down menu, and click Confirm.
On the next page, you will have the final link. Click on it to start the download.
Step 2: Install the official Windows 11 ISO (3 methods)
Now that we have all the bases covered, it’s time to get started with the installation. There are a couple of ways of going about it.
Method #1: Install on the same PC with setup.exe
This method describes the process of installing Windows 11 from the ISO straight away to the machine that it is downloaded on. To start it off, double-click the ISO file to mount it.
Once it’s mounted, double-click the setup.exe file within it.
This will begin installation immediately.
Follow the on-screen prompts to continue to install Windows 11.
During the installation, you will come upon the ‘Ready to install’ window. Click on Change what to keep to decide what you want to keep.
If you want to do a clean installation, select ‘Nothing’. If not, choose from the other two, whichever is more appropriate to your needs, and continue on.
The Setup may look for new updates before actually beginning to install Windows 11.
Keep following the on-screen prompts to continue to complete the setup.
Your PC will restart a few times when installing Windows 11.
Method #2: Install via a USB device (Create Installation Media)
You can also use the ISO to create installation media for Windows 11 and use it to install on any compatible PC. Here’s how to go about it.
2.1: Create a bootable Windows 11 USB drive
First up, plug in a USB device, then open File Explorer (
Windows + E). Right-click on your USB and select Format.
With the default settings applied, click on Start.
Now that your USB device is formatted, you will have to create an installation media on it with the ISO. For this, we’re going to use the Rufus tool.
Download Rufus and open it up. It should automatically detect your USB device and show it under the Device menu.
Now, click on Select to choose your ISO file.
Now, select the downloaded ISO file and click on Open.
The ISO file will be selected in Rufus now.
Once the ISO file is selected, Rufus will update all the formatting options and configure the options for you. All you need to do is to hit Start.
When prompted, just click OK.
Rufus will now format the USB and copy the official Windows 11 to create a portable bootable USB device. Once the process is complete, you will see ‘Ready’ as shown below.
Now, it’s time to get the installation process underway.
2.2: Install Windows 11 using the bootable USB drive
Plug this USB into the computer on which you want to install Windows 11, and restart the PC into boot mode.
For this process, first up, shut down your PC. Then, turn it back on and press F8 to restart the PC into boot mode.
Once you’re in Boot mode, click on Use a device.
Then select your USB Drive.
The Windows 11 setup should start. Click Next to proceed.
Click on Install now. Enter your product key. If you don’t have one, click on I don’t have a product key at the bottom.
Select the version of Windows that you want to install and click Next. Accept the terms and agreements and click Next.
Here’s that choice again – to upgrade or to start afresh. The choice is yours, but we’re going to go for a clean installation and are thus selecting the Custom: Install Windows only.
Select your partition and click Next.
Now, this is where you’ll get the new out-of-box setup experience. Select your country and click Yes.
Choose the input method and click Yes.
For a first, Windows now lets you name your PC from the setup itself. Enter a name and click on Next.
Link your Microsoft account and click Next.
As such, go through all the on-screen instructions until you come to the final installation process. You’ll see the steps remaining and the percentage markers at the bottom.
Once the process is complete, your computer will restart and you’ll have Windows 11 running on your PC.
Method #3: Install on a Virtual Machine
Even if you’re someone who’s going to wait until the final, stable version of Windows 11 is out, whenever that is, you can still think about using it on a virtual machine to try it out. Now, there are various virtual machine programs out there. But for this guide, we’re using Oracle VM VirtualBox.
Download: Oracle VM VirtualBox
Download and install the VirtualBox and open it. Click on New.
Type in a name for the operating system. Then click on the Version drop-down menu.
Select Windows 10 (64-bit).
Adjust the slider to allocate the amount of RAM for this virtual machine. Then click Next.
Choose Fixed size and click Next.
Enter the size of your virtual hard disk and click Create.
VirtualBox will take a while to create the virtual hard disk. Once the disk is created, click on Settings.
Click on Storage in the left panel. Then, next to Controller: SATA, click on the first CD-ROM icon.
Select the downloaded Win 11 ISO and click Choose.
Click on the Empty slot below.
Then click on the CD/ROM icon next to ‘Optical Drive’, and choose your recently created virtual drive.
Now click on Start.
Your Windows 11 setup will now begin on your virtual machine.
Go through the steps as shown in the previous method and start using your Windows 11.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs):
Here we address a few common queries that people have had ever since the release of the official Windows 11 ISO.
Is the official Windows 11 ISO the latest Windows 11 build?
Yes, this is the latest available version of Windows 11 for end users. The link above will be updated with newer versions as they are released.
Do you still need TPM 2.0 and Secure Boot?
Yes, the infamous system requirements have persisted and you will have to have TPM 2.0 and Secure boot enabled.
When will Windows 11 release?
Windows 11 is already available. You can download the Installation Assistant tool at this link.
We hope you were able to download the official Windows 11 ISO from the Windows Insider channels and install it easily. There are lots of things yet to go live on Windows 11 so stay tuned for all the latest news.
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