One of the new “features” in the Windows 11 22H2 update is a Microsoft account requirement for all new installations, whether you’re using the Home or Pro version of the operating system. And that’s a shame, because the 22H2 update fixes a few of Windows 11’s original shortcomings while adding some nice quality-of-life improvements.
A simple workaround for this requirement is the Rufus USB Format Tool, which can create USB installation media for Windows and all sorts of other operating systems. Rufus has already offered some flags to remove the Windows 11 system requirements checks from the installer, removing the need for clumsy Windows Registry edits and other workarounds. But the 3.19 beta will also remove the Microsoft account requirement for new installs, making it easier to set up a new Windows PC with a traditional local account.
When setting up Windows 11, be sure not to connect your PC to the Internet before creating your user account. This trick worked to bypass the Microsoft account requirement in Windows 11 Pro and some later versions of Windows 10, but it is removed entirely from Windows 11 22H2. The Rufus tool simply returns to the status quo before 22H2.
If you use Rufus to avoid Windows 11 system requirements, your system will still be “unsupported” once Windows 11 is up and running. This means accepting periodic reminder messages about unsupported hardware and the vague threat that Microsoft may eventually stop providing updates and security patches for unsupported systems. On the other hand, Rufus does not prevent the Windows 11 TPM and security features from working once the OS is installed, so if you want to create a single USB installer that will cover both hardware supported and unsupported, Rufus makes it possible.
Microsoft provides its own media creation tools for people who want to create USB install drives for Windows 10 or Windows 11, but it obviously doesn’t offer the same workarounds for enterprise needs.
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