In context: With the release of Windows 11 right around the corner, Microsoft continues its TPM requirement campaign, seemingly extending the need for the security module for any type of Windows installation. As the Redmond giant tries to clarify why we need TPM 2.0 enabled to run its latest operating system, the company states that it will also be necessary for virtual machines.
Since the announcement of Windows 11, Microsoft hasn’t been entirely upfront in terms of what users would need to run the new OS. Things like Secure Boot and TPM 2.0 weren’t mentioned during Microsoft’s presentation back in June, causing confusion when people wanted to know if they could have Windows 11 installed on their machines. Thankfully, this problem appears to be solved.
Recently, though, the company has tried to make things clear, stating that “we need to talk about TPM 2.0”:
Aside from mentioning that Windows 11 requires TPM for security-related features, the memo informs us that many recent PCs can actually run TPM 2.0, but the module comes disabled by default. Furthermore, there are instructions on how to enable the feature by accessing the UEFI BIOS setup and looking for labels such as “Security Device, Security Device Support, TPM State, AMD fTPM switch, AMD PSP fTPM, Intel PTT, or Intel Platform Trust Technology.”
The reason for mentioning Intel and AMD is that CPUs can have embedded TPMs. That means that you might be able to run Windows 11 even if your motherboard doesn’t feature the module.
Additionally, the requirement has been extended further. Virtual machines also need to have TPM 2.0 enabled, since the Windows 11 Insider Preview update to Build 22458.
The update notes also say that “previously created VMs running Insider Preview builds may not update to the latest preview builds,” and explain that the OS will still run normally in VMs created in virtualization products from the likes of VMware and Oracle, as long as hardware requirements are met.
With little more than two weeks before Windows 11 is released, it's clear Microsoft won’t back down with the controversial system requirement and perhaps that's for good reason (we will have to wait and see). If you intend to upgrade your OS and still want to learn more about TPM, take a look here.