How to Upgrade windows 7 to Windows 11 for FREE (Without Data loss)

In this article, we’ll cover the required specifications and how to upgrade windows 7 computers and install Windows 11 without losing data.


If you’re still using Windows 7, it’s time to upgrade to the latest Windows 11 because Microsoft ended support for Windows 7. That means your device not getting the security updates that Microsoft regularly releases to secure Windows and fix recent bugs. So you may have a question on your mind, Can Windows 7 upgrade to Windows 11 for free? And the answer is yes but first, you have to upgrade to Windows 10 and then opt for Windows 11. Because Microsoft make it available Windows 11 upgrade for compatible Windows 10 devices only. Here this post explains how to update or upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 11 without losing data.

System Requirements for Windows 11

Let’s first check if your device is compatible and meet the minimum system requirements for Windows 11. Microsoft officials recommend the following system requirements to upgrade to Windows 11 for free.

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Here are the minimum system requirements needed to install and run Windows 11:

  • Processor: 1GHz, 2 Cores, 64-bit
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 64GB
  • Firmware: UEFI with Secure Boot
  • TPM: Version 2.0

Secure boot is a security feature that only allows your PC to boot if it can verify the signature of your operating system.

TPM (Trusted Platform Module) a small chip on your motherboard used for Windows Hello identity protection and BitLocker encryption

UEFI firmware drivers and EFI applications prevent malicious software from taking over the boot sequence of your computer.

You can upgrade to Windows 10 without any problem but for Windows 11 Secure Boot and TPM 2.0 are required. These are two features that weren’t necessarily required in previous operating systems, but Microsoft has decided to enforce them with the new Windows 11 to help better protect users and their data.

Note – You can download and run the official PC HEALTH CHECK tool from Microsoft to check whether your PC is compatible with the Windows 11 free upgrade or not.

PC Health Check

Backup Important Data and product key

Before making any big changes, it’s always recommended to back up your important data. And you can use the Windows 7 product key to activate Windows 10 and upgrade to Windows 11 for free as well.

So first Backup your important data and files to an external device or cloud storage. And note down the Windows 7 product key, you can use a third-party app like produKey or ShowKeyPlus to retrieve or Find your Windows product key.

check Windows 10 Product Key

Upgrade windows 7 to windows 10

When you are ready, let’s follow the steps below to first upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10.

Download media creation tool windows 7

  • This will download the Windows 10 media creation tool, Once the file’s downloaded, open it and agree to the various terms and conditions that are required.

Media creation tool terms and conditions

  • Next Select Upgrade this PC now when given the choice

Upgrade this PC windows 7

This will start downloading Windows 10 files from the Microsoft server and upgrade your PC. During the upgrade process, You will be given the choice as to whether you want to keep your files and programs or start afresh with none of your programs and files.

Also, refer to this video to upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 for FREE.

How to Install Windows 11 Without Data Loss

Once you upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10, and your device meets minimum system requirements then you can easily and quickly upgrade to Windows 11 for free.

Note – After upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 if your device is not activated automatically we recommend use the Windows 7 product key to activate your device.

change product key on windows 10

Upgrade from Windows 10 to Windows 11 23H2

The official way Microsoft recommends to upgrade from Windows 10 to Windows 11 is to check for Windows updates and install the Windows 11 update if available for your device. This is probably the easiest and most popular way of installing Windows 11.

  • Press the Windows key + X and select settings,
  • Go to Windows Update then hit the check for updates button,
  • If Windows updates are pending there, allow them to install on your device
  • In addition, if you notice a notification, upgrade to Windows 11 is ready – and it’s Free! Then hit the Download and Install button.

Windows 11, version 23H2 is ready

  • This will download Windows 11 files from the Microsoft server and install them on your device to upgrade to Windows 11, The process may take some time depending on your Internet speed.
  • Once done you need to reboot your PC to apply the changes and you will get the brand new Windows 11 installed on your PC.

Upgrade windows 11

Windows 11 Installation Assistant

Well if the Windows 11 update isn’t available through the Windows update then Microsoft allows you to upgrade using the Windows 11 Installation Assistant. The tool will download the updated operating system and install it for you.

  • First, open the Windows 11 download page from this link, and click on Download now
  • This will download Windows 11 Installation Assistant on your device,

Download windows 11 installation assistant

  • Locate the downloaded file, and double-click on it, If prompted by UAC to allow permission, click Yes.

Windows 11 installation assistant UAC

  • You must Read and accept the license terms before proceeding,

Windows 11 installation assistant license terms

  • This will start download Windows 11 files from the Microsoft server and prepare for installation, click Restart now.

windows 11 installation assistant restart nowWindows 11 will install in the background, your computer may restart a few times during this process. Eventually, you’ll be met with a login screen where you can log in to your new Windows 11 desktop.

Download the Windows 11 23H2 ISO

ISO files are disk images that are used to install operating systems. You can download the Windows 11 ISO from the Microsoft website and use it to perform an in-place upgrade. To do so, you’re going to need a USB to create a bootable USB installation drive. Alternatively, if you don’t have a usable USB, you can virtually mount the ISO using a tool like DAEMON Tools Lite.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is it possible to upgrade directly from Windows 7 to Windows 11?

  • No, direct upgrades from Windows 7 to Windows 11 are not supported. You’ll need to perform a clean installation of Windows 11.

What are the system requirements for Windows 11?

  • Windows 11 has specific hardware requirements. These include a compatible 64-bit processor, 4 GB of RAM or more, and UEFI firmware with Secure Boot capability, among others.

Do I need to back up my data before upgrading?

  • Yes, it’s highly recommended to back up all your important files and documents before performing any major OS upgrade to avoid potential data loss.

Can I upgrade to Windows 11 for free if I’m using Windows 7?

  • If your system meets the hardware requirements, you may be eligible for a free upgrade to Windows 11 if you have a valid Windows 7 license. Check official Microsoft channels for any special upgrade offers.

How do I perform a clean installation of Windows 11?

  • To perform a clean installation, create a bootable USB drive with the Windows 11 installation media, boot from it, and follow the on-screen instructions to install the new OS, ensuring you select the option to format the drive during installation.

Will my applications and files be preserved during the upgrade?

  • No, a clean installation means all applications and files on the system drive will be wiped. Be sure to back up your data and have installation files for your applications ready.

Can I revert to Windows 7 after upgrading to Windows 11?

  • If you performed a clean installation, reverting to Windows 7 will require a full reinstallation of the older OS. It’s recommended to only upgrade if you’re prepared for this irreversible change.

Are there alternative options for those unable to upgrade to Windows 11?

  • Yes, you can choose to stick with Windows 7, though be aware that it’s no longer receiving security updates. Alternatively, consider upgrading to a supported OS like Windows 10.

Also read:

Steve Ballmer
Steve Ballmer
With over 7 years of experience in the IT industry, I have experience in IT support, helpdesk, sysadmin, network admin, and cloud computing. Certified in Microsoft Technologies (MCTS and MCSA) and also Cisco Certified Professional in Routing and Switching.

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