Windows 11 will not be a forced upgrade

Windows 11 RTM

Thank the stars! Microsoft has already confirmed that Windows 11 will be a free upgrade for eligible Windows 10 devices, and now the company has laid the ground rules for how this will happen.

It will be a seeker-initiated update, meaning users will need to manually check for updates on their devices to start the Windows 11 deployment process. No more dark days of early Windows 10 when Microsoft pretty much forced the release on users.

The fear and loathing that Microsoft induced with its Get Windows 10 (GWX) campaign still sends shiver around the spine. And the criticism the company got for it was relentless.

Now, though, there is no requirement to upgrade to Windows 11. You can refuse the free upgrade when offered, and continue using your current operating system, if you want.

This is how the company talks about it:

“For consumers we will continue to provide choices for control and transparency related to device updates. This includes the ability to schedule a restart, pause an update, and have full control over which optional updates to install. The feature update process for Windows 10 to Windows 11 will be a user-initiated ‘seeker’ process to choose to update to Windows 11.”

Fair enough.

Redmond also confirmed that the seeking experience will not be available for users who have devices that are not eligible due to the strict hardware requirements of the new operating system:

“For users who are not eligible for Windows 11 due to the hardware requirements, the seeking experience will not be available. You can find more information on device and hardware requirements here. We will continue to document all our releases and updates with release notes (in 36 languages) and share information on releases via the Windows release health hub.”

Well, at least they are being upfront about it.

The big takeaway here is that if you want to stay on Windows 10, which will continue to be supported until October 2025, then your computer will get security updates and improvements for four more years.

You will not be forced to make the switch to Windows 11.