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9 things to do before updating to Windows 11

Windows 11 brings great new features. However, although Microsoft has made it easier to upgrade to the new operating system, it is essential to do some checks to make sure the clean install goes well.

In this guide, TheWindowsFan.com will look at nine things you need to do before upgrading to Windows 11. The goal is to make sure your PC meets Microsoft’s requirements and that you have a full backup in case everything goes wrong.

1. Guaranteed compatibility

Start by checking if your PC can run Windows 11 properly. Microsoft’s new operating system has the following minimum system requirements:

CPU 1Ghz or higher on a System on a Chip or compatible 64-bit processor
GPU DirectX 12 compatible with the WDDM 2.0 driver
RAM 4GB or higher
Storage 64GB or higher
Firmware UEFI, capable of Secure Boot
TPM Version 1.2 or 2.0
Monitor HD display (720p) larger than 9″, 8 bits per color channel
Internet Stable connection for Windows 11 Home edition

You can check your system specs from Settings > System > About. However, you should use Microsoft’s new PC Health Check application to see if your PC is compatible. Once installed, click the blue Check Now button, and this will give you a full report:

PC display test application does not meet the requirements of Windows 11
PC display test application does not meet the requirements of Windows 11

The application will notify you that you should not upgrade if TPM 2.0 and UEFI Secure Boot are disabled. So let’s see how you can enable these elements.

2. Enable Trusted Platform Module (TPM)

The Trusted Platform Module, or TPM, is a chip installed on the motherboard to store sensitive security data. To enable the Trusted Platform Module, refer to the article “How to enable TPM 2.0 to fix the “This PC Can’t Run Windows 11″ error” for more details.

3. Enable Secure Boot

Similar to TPM, Secure Boot is also a security feature. It ensures that the system only boots a trusted operating system. To enable Secure Boot, do the following:

Step 1: Restart the system via Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced Startup.

Step 2: Go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > UEFI Firmware Settings > Restart > Boot.

Step 3: Change Secure Boot status to Enabled.

However, if you are using a computer with BIOS, your system may not be able to boot after enabling this security feature. To prevent this from happening, convert MBR to GPT and switch BIOS to UEFI.

4. Data backup

The first versions of new software like Windows 11 often have a lot of bugs. These put you at risk of disrupting your workflow and even losing all your data. The best precaution is to back up your data.

You can use quick backup options in the cloud or on an external hard drive (SSD or HDD). Remember, backups are essential even if you are installing Windows 11 as a secondary system.

5. Memory Optimization

Another important thing is to make space for the new Windows. Microsoft requires 64GB or more of free space on your system for the new operating system. You can try one of the following to free up space on your drive:

Free up space for the new operating system
Free up space for the new operating system

Use Disk Cleanup

Disk Cleanup is a built-in, quick fix solution for cluttered drives. You can use the maintenance utility to delete temporary and unnecessary files on the primary partition that will host the new operating system.

While Disk Cleanup will do most of the work, you can also use a combination of other Windows junk removal methods.

Using external storage

By far, the best way to free up space is to move large, unnecessary, or rarely used files to an external hard drive, such as photo albums or software setups.

6. Remember Microsoft account

The Windows 11 update requires you to sign in to your Microsoft account. If you’ve synced your data with the account (for example, Skype and Email accounts), make sure you remember the credentials for the account.

You may lose access to multiple accounts if they are all synced to the primary Microsoft account. Recording your login details, or resetting if necessary, will help you keep your contacts and calendar intact, thereby helping to keep your workflow uninterrupted.

7. Ensure a stable Internet connection

A major reason why many Windows 11 operating system updates fail is because of an unstable Internet connection. Windows 11 is an update to Microsoft’s servers. For this reason, you must stay connected to the Web during the installation process.

The use of unstable mobile data hotspots, public WiFi, and/or private connections may cause errors. Avoid accessing hotspots and public connections, and make sure your WLAN is at least stable enough to support a half- to an hour-long Windows 11 installation.

8. Make sure the power supply is not interrupted

If you’re using a laptop, make sure it’s plugged in to prevent the battery from running out. Likewise, if you’re updating on a PC, make sure the power isn’t interrupted. An accidental power failure can cause data loss and reset the installation progress.

9. Some other safety measures

The article specifically recommends making sure the workflow is smooth and backing up the system before updating, in case things don’t go smoothly.

Check the app

A smart move is to confirm that all your professional tools and applications are also available on Windows 11. It is possible that some specific applications that you use regularly are not yet available for the new operating system by Microsoft.

Create a recovery drive

Creating a system restore point on an external drive means creating a copy of Windows as it is. If something doesn’t work well after an update, a recovery drive will help you restore the system to a point in time before the update.

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