What just happened? Microsoft rolled out the Windows 11 23H2 update earlier this year, bringing a myriad of new features and fixes. However, some users who installed the update are now complaining that it significantly reduced their PC's performance, even after performing a clean install.

An affected user, Anant Acharya, complained about the reduced performance on the official Microsoft forums. He says the problem cropped up on his 2020 HP Pavilion laptop, which was a high-performance device before the recent update and could clock high frame rates in most games. According to Acharya, the laptop could hit over 130 FPS in games like Valorant, CS:GO, and Grand Theft Auto 5 running at high-ultra settings, and about 80-90 FPS in AAA titles like Forza Horizon 5 running at high settings.

However, after the 23H2 update, he started noticing sudden stutters and drastic FPS drops in the same games. He added that the problems were not due to thermal throttling, as the device didn't register any change in operating temperatures following the update. Moreover, since the laptop is always used in an air-conditioned room and with a cooling pad, the issues are likely software-related.

Another affected user is Redditor u/BNSoul, who claims that the 23H2 clean install is between 5 and 8 percent slower than 22H2 in almost all benchmarks. In addition, games are also experiencing random stuttering and other performance-related issues. While the complainant initially thought that the only way to get back peak performance on his PC was to roll back to 22H2, Microsoft has since suggested a workaround that could fix the issues without having to uninstall the update.

According to the company, users should reset Microsoft Defender through a couple of PowerShell commands, reboot their PC, and then enable CPU Virtualization in BIOS. Next, they will need to open Windows Security and enable Memory Integrity under the Core Isolation settings. Once the computer is restarted after making the aforementioned changes, Hypervisor will be running and Virtualization Security will be enabled. This should resolve the performance-related issues reported by the users.

Thankfully, the fix seems to be working, as the Redditor claims that their PC is back to normal after making the suggested changes. GPU benchmarks are now 3 to 5 percent faster, while CPU benchmarks are back to 22H2 levels for the most part.