How much of an issue is it to install W11P


Wild Bill

Active member
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W11Pro
Not exactly sure if this is the right place to ask, but here goes.

To be upfront, I've installed Windows OS from DOS to 10, but have yet to mess with 11 with a unit that comes without an OS.

My question is, If I buy a (Dell) laptop that says "has no OS”, how much of an issue is it to install W11P?.

I have read that the installation of 11 isn't like any of the other systems. Also, I would think that any laptop would have had some sort of OS installed at one point, and should be able to get the OS installed that originally came with the system. I was thinking if it had W10, I should be able to just reinstall 10 and do the update to 11 from that, as the original system should self activate.

I have a DELL 7740, now, the same model# that I'm looking at getting, although with somewhat different components, i.e., CPU, and a dedicated GPU as well as the usual intel 630. And wonder if I would be able to just recover that backup to the new system. The backup I use does have a recover to dissimilar. I don't think the BIOS version would be an issue.

Any reply is OK. Thanks
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    W11Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I5-9400H
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    32g
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel on board 630
    Sound Card
    on board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    laptop/Samsung 27" external
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1.5g (3 ea 512 g SSD)
    PSU
    Dell laptop 130 (I believe)
    Case
    Dell
    Cooling
    Dell laptop
    Keyboard
    Logitech K120 external USB
    Mouse
    Logitech N-211 external USB
    Internet Speed
    100mps
    Browser
    FF/Chrome/Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Bought off eBay, working OK, setting up 11 is a pain.
The installation of Windows 10 and 11 are nearly identical. In fact, a Windows 10 key is a Windows 11 key and a Windows 11 key is a Windows 10 key - there is absolutely no way to differentiate one from the other because there is no difference :-).

Put another way, if you have a BIOS that has a signature indicting that this system originally shipped with Win 10, you can also install the same edition (Home, Pro, etc.) of Windows 11 on that system.

From a practical standpoint, there are some tighter system requirements for Windows 11, for example, it requires a system that is at least capable of Secure Boot, it requires a TPM 2.0 module (or equivalent CPU firmware TPM), and an 8th gen Intel CPU or newer (don't know the AMD versions of the top of my head). However, even if you do not meet all of those requirements, there are workarounds.

The bottom line that you should almost certainly be able to install Win 11.

As for restoring an image from another similar system, I would advise against that, especially if you are expecting to network these machines together because they will both end up with the same SIDs. However, you can do this as a shortcut...

Note that I am assuming same hardware, or "mostly" the same for this process.

On your existing system, even if it is running Windows 10, export all your drivers like this:

Open a command prompt as admin and run...

MD C:\Drivers_Backup
pnputil /export-driver * C:\Drivers_Backup

This will make a backup copy of ALL drivers used by that system. Win 10 drivers can be used on Win 11. As a rule, they are generally the same. Copy those to an external HDD, thumb drive, etc.

Perform the clean install of Win 11 on the new system. After installation, attach the drive with the drivers. Open an elevated command and run the command below. Change the path to the location of your backed up drivers:

pnputil /add-driver D:\Drivers_Backup\*.inf /subdirs /install

When done, reboot. This installs all the drivers in one shot.

NOTE: During the driver installation, your screen may flash or go blank temporarily when the display driver is being installed. This is normal and expected behavior.

BTW, I was not sure of the model precisely. When I look up a Dell 7740 I am presented with a Dell Precision Workstation 7740 which appears to have a 9th gen Intel. Does that sound correct?
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    Intel i7-11700K
    Motherboard
    ASUS Prime Z590-A
    Memory
    128GB Crucial Ballistix 3200MHz DRAM
    Graphics Card(s)
    No GPU - CPU graphics only (for now)
    Sound Card
    Realtek (on motherboard)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP Envy 32
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    1 x 1TB NVMe Gen 4 x 4 SSD
    1 x 2TB NVMe Gen 3 x 4 SSD
    2 x 512GB 2.5" SSDs
    2 x 8TB HD
    PSU
    Corsair HX850i
    Case
    Corsair iCue 5000X RGB
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black cooler + 10 case fans
    Keyboard
    CODE backlit mechanical keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1 Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Additional options installed:
    WiFi 6E PCIe adapter
    ASUS ThunderboltEX 4 PCIe adapter
  • Operating System
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkBook 13x Gen 2
    CPU
    Intel i7-1255U
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Xe Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek® ALC3306-CG codec
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3-inch IPS Display
    Screen Resolution
    WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
    Hard Drives
    2 TB 4 x 4 NVMe SSD
    PSU
    USB-C / Thunderbolt 4 Power / Charging
    Mouse
    Buttonless Glass Precision Touchpad
    Keyboard
    Backlit, spill resistant keyboard
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    WiFi 6e / Bluetooth 5.1 / Facial Recognition / Fingerprint Sensor / ToF (Time of Flight) Human Presence Sensor
Follow-up: You had voiced concern over how different it might be to install Windows 11. Other than some different hardware requirements, I tried to point out that the procedure is nearly identical to Windows 10. There are a few minor differences, such as Microsoft really, really wanting you to use a Microsoft account, but again, that can be easily worked around.

However, you might just want to take a look at the tutorial linked to below which shows the entire clean install procedure for Windows 11. This way you will know exactly what to expect during installation.

 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    Intel i7-11700K
    Motherboard
    ASUS Prime Z590-A
    Memory
    128GB Crucial Ballistix 3200MHz DRAM
    Graphics Card(s)
    No GPU - CPU graphics only (for now)
    Sound Card
    Realtek (on motherboard)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP Envy 32
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    1 x 1TB NVMe Gen 4 x 4 SSD
    1 x 2TB NVMe Gen 3 x 4 SSD
    2 x 512GB 2.5" SSDs
    2 x 8TB HD
    PSU
    Corsair HX850i
    Case
    Corsair iCue 5000X RGB
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black cooler + 10 case fans
    Keyboard
    CODE backlit mechanical keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1 Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Additional options installed:
    WiFi 6E PCIe adapter
    ASUS ThunderboltEX 4 PCIe adapter
  • Operating System
    Win11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkBook 13x Gen 2
    CPU
    Intel i7-1255U
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Xe Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek® ALC3306-CG codec
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3-inch IPS Display
    Screen Resolution
    WQXGA (2560 x 1600)
    Hard Drives
    2 TB 4 x 4 NVMe SSD
    PSU
    USB-C / Thunderbolt 4 Power / Charging
    Mouse
    Buttonless Glass Precision Touchpad
    Keyboard
    Backlit, spill resistant keyboard
    Internet Speed
    1Gb Up / 1Gb Down
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    WiFi 6e / Bluetooth 5.1 / Facial Recognition / Fingerprint Sensor / ToF (Time of Flight) Human Presence Sensor
I have read that the installation of 11 isn't like any of the other systems.
The only difference is that Windows 11 is going to check for a specific CPU model or above for support and also check for a TPM module (either physical or on the CPU). If you don't have those things, it's going to say your hardware is non-compatible. There are workarounds if you want to proceed.

If your hardware is compatible, it's pretty much the same type of install it has been for many, many years.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Beelink SEI8
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-8279u
    Motherboard
    AZW SEI
    Memory
    32GB DDR4 2666Mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel Iris Plus 655
    Sound Card
    Intel SST
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Asus ProArt PA278QV
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    512GB NVMe
    PSU
    NA
    Case
    NA
    Cooling
    NA
    Keyboard
    NA
    Mouse
    NA
    Internet Speed
    500/50
    Browser
    Edge
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    Mini PC used for testing Windows 11.
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    Ryzen 9 5900x
    Motherboard
    Asus Rog Strix X570-E Gaming
    Memory
    64GB DDR4-3600
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA GeForce 3080 FT3 Ultra
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQ. ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27” WQHD
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    2TB WD SN850 PCI-E Gen 4 NVMe
    2TB Sandisk Ultra 2.5" SATA SSD
    PSU
    Seasonic Focus 850
    Case
    Fractal Meshify S2 in White
    Cooling
    Dark Rock Pro CPU cooler, 3 x 140mm case fans
    Mouse
    Logitech G9 Laser Mouse
    Keyboard
    Corsiar K65 RGB Lux
    Internet Speed
    500/50
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Defender.
My question is, If I buy a (Dell) laptop that says "has no OS”, how much of an issue is it to install W11P?.
Your 'W11P' is short for Windows 11 Pro?

As others have said, it's as straight forward as installing W10 Pro.

But to activate it you'll have to but a licence key. If you're buying a new laptop direct from Dell it would probably work out cheaper to include W11 Pro in the bundle. You could always wipe it and do your own clean install after you have set up the PC's pre-installed W11 and it has been activated with a digital licence.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Acer Aspire 3 A315-23
    CPU
    AMD Athlon Silver 3050U
    Memory
    8GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Radeon Graphics
    Monitor(s) Displays
    laptop screen
    Screen Resolution
    1366x768 native resolution, up to 2560x1440 with Radeon Virtual Super Resolution
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung EVO 870 SSD
    Internet Speed
    50 Mbps
    Browser
    Edge, Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    fully 'Windows 11 ready' laptop. Windows 10 C: partition migrated from my old unsupported 'main machine' then upgraded to 11. A test migration ran Insider builds for 2 months. When 11 was released on 5th October it was re-imaged back to 10 and was offered the upgrade in Windows Update on 20th October. Windows Update offered the 22H2 Feature Update on 20th September 2022. It got the 23H2 Feature Update on 4th November 2023 through Windows Update.

    My SYSTEM THREE is a Dell Latitude 5410, i7-10610U, 32GB RAM, 512GB NVMe ssd, supported device running Windows 11 Pro (and all my Hyper-V VMs).

    My SYSTEM FOUR is a 2-in-1 convertible Lenovo Yoga 11e 20DA, Celeron N2930, 8GB RAM, 256GB ssd. Unsupported device: currently running Win10 Pro, plus Win11 Pro RTM and Insider Beta as native boot vhdx.

    My SYSTEM FIVE is a Dell Latitude 3190 2-in-1, Pentium Silver N5030, 4GB RAM, 512GB NVMe ssd, supported device running Windows 11 Pro, plus the Insider Beta, Dev, and Canary builds as a native boot .vhdx.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Lattitude E4310
    CPU
    Intel® Core™ i5-520M
    Motherboard
    0T6M8G
    Memory
    8GB
    Graphics card(s)
    (integrated graphics) Intel HD Graphics
    Screen Resolution
    1366x768
    Hard Drives
    500GB Crucial MX500 SSD
    Browser
    Firefox, Edge
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    unsupported machine: Legacy bios, MBR, TPM 1.2, upgraded from W10 to W11 using W10/W11 hybrid install media workaround. In-place upgrade to 22H2 using ISO and a workaround. Feature Update to 23H2 by manually installing the Enablement Package. Also running Insider Beta, Dev, and Canary builds as a native boot .vhdx.

    My SYSTEM THREE is a Dell Latitude 5410, i7-10610U, 32GB RAM, 512GB NVMe ssd, supported device running Windows 11 Pro (and all my Hyper-V VMs).

    My SYSTEM FOUR is a 2-in-1 convertible Lenovo Yoga 11e 20DA, Celeron N2930, 8GB RAM, 256GB ssd. Unsupported device: currently running Win10 Pro, plus Win11 Pro RTM and Insider Beta as native boot vhdx.

    My SYSTEM FIVE is a Dell Latitude 3190 2-in-1, Pentium Silver N5030, 4GB RAM, 512GB NVMe ssd, supported device running Windows 11 Pro, plus the Insider Beta, Dev, and Canary builds as a native boot .vhdx.

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