Intel i5-6500 is not compatible with the Windows 11 operating system as of December 2021. Intel i5-6500 is one of the latest processors from the i5 family of processors. It is available for order through online merchant websites as of now. Surprisingly, computers running on the Intel i5-6500 processors cannot run Windows 11 operating system. For a processor that is under active sale activity, the inability to run Windows 11 on the computer is a disappointment.
Why is Intel i5-6500 processor not compatible with Windows 11?
Microsoft released a list of processors that are compatible with Windows 11. You may check the list for your ready reference on this link. As of December 2021, the Intel i5-6500 processors are not a part of the list of Intel processors that are compatible with running Windows 11. Microsoft has had a look at the processor compatibility list on a couple of occasions. More most practical considerations, you may consider the current list of Intel processors that are compatible with Windows 11 as a final list. We do not expect that an i5-6500 based processor will turn compatible in the future.
For the record, Microsoft’s Windows 11 operating system is compatible with Intel 8th generation and higher processors. Intel i5-6500 is a sixth generation processor. Hence, it is incompatible with Windows 11.
In terms of public posturing, there has been no official cause or elaboration about Intel i5-6500’s incompatibility with running Windows 11. The guess is that the incompatibility could be on account of security reasons. Or, the incompatibility could be explained in terms of performance reasons. Microsoft has tested Windows 11 across a diverse set of processors. During the Windows 11 testing, some processors would have reported a hardware crash rate higher than the baseline hardware crash rates on computers. Such processors have been marked incompatible by Microsoft. It all boils down to the security, performance, and user experience of Windows 11 users. Microsoft is clear in providing a consistent and efficient experience to Windows 11 users.
What does it mean that Intel i5-6500 is incompatible with Windows 11?
Intel i5-6500 is incompatible with Windows 11. This means that you will not get Windows 11 through the Windows Update program on your Windows 10 computer. The normal and organic path towards updating your computer to Windows 11 is through the Windows Update program on the computer. Incompatible systems are blocked from the Windows Update program. So, i5-6500 based computers cannot participate in the Windows Update program to update from Windows 10 to Windows 11.
Can I install Windows 11 on Intel i5-6500 computers?
Yes, you can install Windows 11 on Intel i5-6500 based computers. Infact, you can install Windows 11 on any incompatible personal computer. For this, we suggest clean installing the Windows 11 on an unsupported or incompatible computer. To clean install Windows 11 on an Intel i5-6500 based computer, you may follow one of the following alternate approaches suggested by Microsoft:
You can download Windows 11 from the Microsoft website – https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows11.
There are 3 different methods that have been suggested to download Windows 11 from the Microsoft website:
- Download an ISO image of the Windows 11 install file and take it from there.
- Use an installation assistant program that acts like a virtual assistant to guide you through the process of installing Windows 11.
- Create a bootable installation media that could be a disk or a USB pendrive. Microsoft allows access to the Media creation tool to create such an installation media. Boot through the USB or disk to go through the process of installing Windows 11 on unsupported computer.
In all these methods, you will install a new Windows 11 operating system on the computer. Your computer, will however, continue to remain unsupported by Microsoft for Windows 11 install.
Unsupported computer implies that your computer and unsupported install of Windows 11 will be blocked from the Windows Update program. Your installation will not be eligible to receive monthly rollup updates, security updates and feature updates. Practically speaking, your clean install of Windows 11 will act in silo without any updates of any kind.
Alternate options for Intel i5-6500 based computers for Windows 11?
There are, unfortunately, not many options available to get Windows 11 to work with an unsupported processor. However, you could use either of the following options to try and work through the entire thing:
Buy a new processor
since Intel i5-6500 is unsupported, it may be worth checking if your computer’s motherboard could support one of the supported processors from the Intel family. In that case, you could buy a new processor that is compatible with Windows 11 and which can work with the existing motherboard. You will be back in business at almost 40 percent cost of the new computer.
Continue with Windows 10
Windows 10 was launched in 2015. It will continue to be supported by Microsoft until October, 2025. At that point, Windows 10 will become an end of life operating system. Until October 2025, you will get access to monthly rollup updates, security updates and any feature updates on a Windows 10 based computer. If you have i5-6500 based computer that is running Windows 10, you may want to rest easy as Windows 10 will be a steady operating system product until October 2025. There is no immediate trigger for you to invest on a new personal computer.
Buy a new computer
Interestingly, many folks like me wish to work on the newest operating system. If you are like me, and wish to work only on a Windows 11 computer, then you may just need to invest on a new computer. Yes, buy a new computer with Windows 11. That would be one investment that will last well for the next 10 years, or until Windows 11 yields space to another version of the Microsoft operating system. Or, buy another computer that comes with an Intel processor of eighth or higher generation of processors.
Intel i5-6500 based computers are incompatible with Windows 11. You may still install Windows 11 as a fresh install on such unsupported computers. But, such installations will remain unsupported by Microsoft. Or, you may continue with Windows 10. For the tech-friendly people, you may just get a new system with a supported processor. That would take you to Windows 11 sooner than many others.
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Rajesh Dhawan is a technology professional who loves to blog about smart wearables, Cloud computing and Microsoft technologies. He loves to break complex problems into manageable chunks of meaningful information.