I have a couple systems with Intel 6th Gen CPUs where we bypassed the CPU checks to run Windows 11 22H2. They are built into specialty hardware, so replacing them was not really feasible. These systems do use SecureBoot and they do have TPM chips; it's just the CPU is a little too old. I also have a regular old laptop in a similar situation I use as a test/lab environment for these two systems. It also has SecureBoot and a TPM.

I want to update the laptop from 22H2 to 23H2 as a test, ahead of the specialty machines. I do not want to re-install from an ISO, as setting up the specialty machines is somewhat awkward; just getting to boot via USB is a pain, and then we need to also boot into a special mode afterward to add special unsigned drivers. I want the test to match the other systems as closely as possible, so I'm hoping to find a way to update this laptop in-place.

I understand I will probably not be able to use Windows Update to get the new release, but I was hoping I could use the Windows 11 Upgrade Assistant and bypass the CPU test in the PC Health Check app via one of the registry hacks. However, so far none of them works, and I am not able to complete the update:

PC Health Check and Windows Upgrade Assistant Results

Based on other things I found in various places, I set all the following registry dword values to 1, just to be sure, even though some of them seem to apply to conditions I already meet:


How can I update this machine to 23H2 without doing a re-install?

  • “How can I update this machine to 23H2 without doing a re-install?” - Use one of the many projects that download and reconfigures the Windows 11 ISO to bypass the compatibility checks. Once you have the ISO just launch the setup.exe from within Windows. You can also use Rufus to achieve the exact same thing
    – Ramhound
    Commented Nov 10, 2023 at 15:35
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    Have you though about a long-term solution? Consider the case in which a future version of Windows 11 simply will not work with the older CPU. Would paying for continued support (LTSC) for an existing version (e.g., 22H2) be feasible? Could another OS be used? Commented Nov 10, 2023 at 16:40
  • @Ramhound That's still doing a re-install, and the installed OS still won't update to the next version on its own; my understanding is it's only the ISO installer that is bypassed. Commented Nov 10, 2023 at 17:02
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    @JoelCoehoorn - No, it’s not. If you run Setup.exe from within Windows you are given the option to “keep everything” and upgrade to 23H2 that process is identical to the process that happens with Windows Update. The only difference is there isn’t a prompt. You can also use the Upgrade Assistant. I tested my solution on a VM that didn’t have a TPM, if I didn’t modify the ISO, I wasn’t able to upgrade the VM from Windows 10 to Windows 11. By modifying the ISO I was, till I did that, I had to enable the virtual TPM within the hypervisor.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Nov 10, 2023 at 17:08
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    To be clear I am suggesting the upgrade process, by mounting the ISO within Windows, is identical to the process used by the Upgrade Assistant and Windows Update
    – Ramhound
    Commented Nov 10, 2023 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


("I want to update the laptop from 22H2 to 23H2" ... "I understand I will probably not be able to use Windows Update to get the new release" [Why not?] ... "How can I update this machine to 23H2 without doing a re-install?")

Windows 11, versions 22H2 and 23H2 share a common core operating system with an identical set of system files. The new features are in dormant and will remain dormant until they are turned on through the “enablement package[KB5027397: Feature update to Windows 11, version 23H2 enablement package], a small, quick-to-install “master switch” that activates the Windows 11, version 23H2 features.

To make a long story short:

  1. The baseline is: "22H2" with the "2023-10 Cumulative Update Preview" or a later cumulative update.

  2. KB5027397 is not available in the "Microsoft Update Catalog" but you can find it (windows11.0-kb5027397-x64.msu) here:

enter image description here

  1. Restart your device after you apply this update.

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