Skip to main content

Microsoft just made it easier to officially download Windows 11

Microsoft just made it easier to download Windows 11. You can now clean install beta versions of the new operating system, or update Windows 10 to Windows 11, on any compatible PC by using an official ISO file.

To get the official Windows 11 ISO file, you’ll need to sign up to be a Windows insider via Microsoft’s website. Once your account is linked, you can visit the Windows Insider Preview Downloads page and choose either a Dev Channel or Beta Channel build to download.

Laptop sitting on a desk showing Windows 11's built-in Microsoft Teams experience.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

When choosing, keep in mind that the Dev Channel gets updated more frequently, but the Beta channel is more stable but won’t come with the latest feature. You can then create installation media either on a USB flash drive or CD, as we describe in our handy guide.

Microsoft is currently offering the ISO files for the Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22000.160 as a download. This means that you can use the files to “clean install” the operating system on any compatible PC, without having to go through the long process of joining the Windows Insider program in Windows 10.

Of course, you’ll need a valid Windows 10 license to activate Windows 11 if you opt to use this ISO. You also can double-click the ISO file once it’s downloaded to open it up and launch an updater to easily move your existing machine to Windows 11.

If you’re using the ISO file to upgrade or clean install a Windows 11 PC, this build should get you all the major Windows 11 features so far. That includes the newly redesigned Start Menu and Taskbar, as well as the new chat app and Microsoft Teams integration.

Those coming from Windows 10 will also get more ways to multitask. And, if you opt for the Windows Insider Dev Channel, you’ll get some new app updates, such as the new Alarms experience. This comes with “Focus Sessions,” which is designed to help you to focus at work using timers, as well as a Spotify integration.

Microsoft also teased a new Paint app for Windows 11, which should be coming soon to Windows Insiders. So, downloading this ISO file and using it to install the new operating system is the best way to ensure that you’re getting the latest and greatest from Microsoft.

Editors' Recommendations

Arif Bacchus
Arif Bacchus is a native New Yorker and a fan of all things technology. Arif works as a freelance writer at Digital Trends…
Windows 11 vs. Windows 10: finally time to upgrade?
The screen of the Surface Pro 9.

Windows 11 is the newest version of Windows, and it's one of the best Windows versions released. At launch, the operating system was very similar to Windows 10, but it has morphed a lot over the past several years. Now, Windows 11 has several key differences compared to Windows 10.

If you've been holding out on upgrading, we have everything you need to know about Windows 11 and how it's different than Windows 10 in this article. We'll detail the differences, as well as show you the areas where Windows 11 is growing faster than Windows 10.
Windows 11 vs. Windows 10: what's new

Read more
I hope Microsoft adds this rumored AI feature to Windows 11
A Windows 11 device sits on a table.

From smart speakers to ChatGPT and Bing Chat, AI has slowly crept into our lives, but not all instances of AI are as prominent as those three examples. Sometimes, the effect is subtle, but still pretty nice. It appears that Microsoft is working on one such instance of AI-enhanced tech that could make using Windows 11 just a little more pleasant. We're talking about AI-powered live wallpapers, and they might be coming soon.

First spotted by Windows Latest, Microsoft is readying an AI-powered desktop that could make the whole user experience feel a lot more interactive. The idea is to adjust depth perception and make some backgrounds appear more "alive" when moving your cursor or the entire device. The wallpaper might move or shift, depending on what you're doing on the desktop.

Read more
I review PCs for a living — here are the apps I install on every device
A bird's eye view of a person working on a laptop.

Since I started reviewing laptops here at Digital Trends, I've worked on over 240 devices. That means I always have a device or two to use, but the machines themselves aren't so important. It's what I can do with them that counts. That's why I install a core group of applications on every laptop I set up.

Going through the process of setting up a new laptop several times a month means I have a list of applications I reach for. If you're setting up a new PC for the first time, here's what you should download.
The basics

Read more