How to get Windows 11 for free now, without waiting for October 5th

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Catherine Le Nevez

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Microsoft is expected to begin the slow release of Windows 11 on October 5th. However, since the new version has already been finalized, you can download it in advance using the Program Windows Insider.

The Windows Insider Program is a test program designed to allow developers to discover new operating system features to prepare their own compatible apps. But it's also open to anyone who wants to provide feedback and help build the final version of the new operating system.

The program is available in three different tiers (dev, beta and channel preview versions of Windows). Since the final version has to go through all channels, you can now use the third channel for upgrade a compatible computer before Windows 11 is generally available.

In this guide we will show you the steps to download the final version of the new operating system before the official release on October 5th.

How to install Windows 11 before October 5th

First you need to register your Microsoft account with the Windows Insider Program by visiting this page and make sure you have enabled the Optional diagnostic data option in Settings> Privacy> Feedback and diagnostics.

Then go to the Settings of your Windows 10 computer:

  • Go to the Start menu and press the gear icon, or search for "Settings";
  • Once the Settings are open, go to Update & Security> Windows Insider Program;
  • Click on "Start";

Here Microsoft will ask you to link an account in order to continue, press the + sign to connect the Microsoft account with which you registered with the Windows Insider Program. Now you will have to choose the channel through which to receive the Preview version: you have to choose the Windows preview versions channel. Now all that remains is to confirm that you accept the security terms and restart the device to complete the setup.

After rebooting:

  • Go to Settings;
  • Select Update & Security> Windows Update and check for updates to be able to download and install Windows 11.
  • A message will appear "The upgrade to Windows 11 is ready, and it's free" and you will have to press on "Download and install";
  • After that you will be asked to reboot the device to ensure that the update is installed.

Once these steps have been completed, Windows 11 will be installed on your computer.

In case the Windows 11 update doesn't appear in Windows Update, you can try switching to Beta channel to be able to download the update. However, if you receive a message in the settings that your computer will not be able to run Windows 11, you will not be able to use these methods to perform the update.

To change the Windows Insider Program settings, open Settings and go to Update & Security> Windows Insider Program. In the section "choose Insider settings" select the Beta Channel. After rebooting, go to Windows Update and install Windows 11.

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