Whether you’re using the Home or Pro editions, Windows 11 asks you to sign in with your Microsoft account.
Enter your Microsoft email, phone number, or Skype ID in the Sign in field, and click or tap Next.
If you’re using two-step verification for your Microsoft account, you might have to confirm that you are the one who tries to sign in by entering a code received on your smartphone or an alternative email account. Otherwise, you are just asked to type the password of your Microsoft account. Once you do, press Sign in.
If you have previously used Windows 10 or Windows 11 with the same Microsoft account, you’ll see a Welcome back! message similar to the one below.
You are also asked whether you want to restore your folders, apps, settings, and credentials from another computer of yours. If you want that, click or tap the Restore from this PC button. Otherwise, if you want to use another Windows Backup or if you don’t want to restore anything, click or tap on More options.
If you’ve clicked (tapped) More options, you can either choose a different Windows Backup to restore, or you can Set up as a new PC if you don’t want to restore anything.
Next, Windows 11 asks you to create a PIN for quick sign-ins. Click or tap on Create PIN.
Enter the PIN code you want, confirm it, and press OK.
For the next step, Windows 11 lets you customize “[...] privacy settings for your device.” You can enable or disable any available features: Location, Find my device, Diagnostic data, Inking & typing, Tailored experiences, and Advertising ID. Before making choices, make sure that you scroll down and read about what each of these features is all about. Then, set the switches to Yes or No, and press Accept.
Now, Windows 11 asks you how you intend to use your PC. For example, will you use it mainly for Development, Entertainment, Gaming, School, Creativity, Business, or Family? Windows 11 will deliver personalized tips, ads, and recommendations depending on your choice. It may also adjust the list of preinstalled apps or Windows 11 bloatware.
Note that you can also select nothing and Skip this step altogether! If you selected any of the options, press Accept when done.
Next, Windows 11 recommends using your Android phone from your PC. If you want to be able to use the Phone Link app on your PC, follow the instructions on the screen and scan the QR code with your smartphone. However, you can do this later, regardless of whether you’re using an Android phone or an iPhone. If you want to finish the installation faster, it’s better to click or tap on Skip.
Next, Microsoft will try to sway you into buying some of its services. For example, you may receive a recommendation to try and then purchase a Microsoft 365 Family subscription. If it sounds good, you can press Unlock now to get the offer. Otherwise, you can Decline.
What Microsoft chooses to advertise varies. After the Microsoft 365 Family trial, the Windows 11 install wizard offered me another subscription to the company’s Microsoft 365 Basic plan that includes 100 GB of cloud storage in OneDrive.
You can Decline the offer if you don’t want it.
Then, I got invited to join Microsoft’s PC Game Pass subscription. Same as the earlier offers, you can Skip for now to move ahead with the installation.
Finally, Windows 11 does another update check. If it finds any available updates, you have to wait for them to be downloaded and installed.
Windows 11 automatically logs you in, telling you to wait for a couple of moments while getting things ready for you.
Finally, it displays the desktop and the Start Menu, and you can start using Windows 11.
If you want to check the version of Windows 11 you’ve installed, open the Settings app and head to its About page. There, your Windows 11 version is displayed under Windows Specifications. For example, in the following screenshot, you can see that after taking all the earlier steps, I installed Windows 11 23H2 on my computer.
Congratulations, you’ve installed Windows 11!
In the initial version of Windows 11, you could install the Pro edition without a Microsoft account. However, since Windows 11 version 22H2 launched in September 2022, you can’t do that anymore. That also applies when installing Windows 11 23H2. Both the Home and Pro editions require you to use a Microsoft account during the setup process. Luckily, there is a workaround you can use, which is detailed in this article: How to install and use Windows 11 with a local account.
Now you know how to install Windows 11 on a new PC, as well as an older one. As you’ve seen, installing Windows 11 can be quite a lengthy process in terms of steps and customizations. However, you can do it yourself without hiring extra help or calling a geeky friend. 🙂 What are your impressions of Windows 11? Do you like it? Let me know what you think in the comments section below.