Windows 11 upgrades for previously blocked PCs

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Microsoft has finally resolved a longstanding issue that prevented certain PCs from upgrading to Windows 11. The compatibility hold, which was due to a bug involving Intel Smart Sound Technology on 11th Gen Intel Core processors, has been lifted after over two years.

Initially identified shortly after the launch of Windows 11 in 2021, the bug affected systems equipped with Intel SST. Microsoft’s compatibility hold was meant to prevent these systems from encountering further issues. With new drivers now available that resolve these compatibility issues, Microsoft has allowed these previously blocked PCs to upgrade to Windows 11.

Owners of the affected PCs can now update their systems to Windows 11, provided they first update their Intel Smart Sound Technology drivers. Microsoft advises a waiting period of up to 48 hours after the driver update before the Windows 11 upgrade option appears, recommending against using manual update tools until then.

As Windows 10 approaches its end of support in October 2025, Microsoft is urging users to transition to Windows 11. However, strict system requirements for Windows 11 continue to pose a barrier for some users. With security updates for Windows 10 set to become a paid service post-support, transitioning to Windows 11 becomes more pressing.

The cost for continuing security updates for Windows 10 is set to increase annually, putting financial pressure on commercial users to upgrade or maintain support. This policy highlights the economic implications of software lifecycle management and the push towards newer technologies.

In a move to encourage upgrades, Microsoft has begun displaying full-screen ads on Windows 10 PCs, advising users of the impending end of support and suggesting a transition to Windows 11. This strategy, while informative, also highlights the challenges some users may face if their hardware does not meet the new OS requirements.

With the compatibility issue resolved, users of affected PCs can now look forward to experiencing Windows 11, with its advanced features and improved security. This development comes as part of Microsoft’s broader strategy to phase out Windows 10 and move users to a more modern and secure operating system.



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