What is the TPM chip needed for a successful Windows 11 install?

By now, we all know that Windows 11 is coming. However, from the look of things, it won’t be coming to just any PC. Microsoft has put a TPM chip requirement for a computer to run the next generation of Windows.

To be specific, the new operating system requires the use of a system with Trusted Platform Module 2.0. Sounds like a new term, right? From the little we know, the new term helps to add to the security of Windows PCs. But what more is there to know? Let’s dive deep into it.

What is a TPM and what is it used for?

The Trusted Platform Modules (TPM) is a chip that is either integrated into your PC’s motherboard or added separately into the CPU. It has been a requirement for previous windows versions but did not get so much attention as of today.

The chip has been used as a dedicated microcontroller chip integrated on some PC motherboards but in recent years processor manufacturers like Intel and AMD have started adding this functionality to their CPUs in the form of firmware-based chips.

So, if you’re curious about what exactly Windows wants from the chip, it actually uses both software and hardware to store and protect important passwords and/or encryption keys. Plus, if the TPM chip detects something wrong in your system, it can run a quarantine mode to try and fix the problem.

“The purpose of TPM is to protect encryption keys, user credentials, and other sensitive data behind a hardware barrier so that malware and attackers can’t access or tamper with that data. In other words, it is a hardware security feature that stores secrets in a special space that’s better protected against external software attacks.”

In Windows, the chip has been used to augment features like Windows Hello passwordless authentication, Windows Defender Application Control, BitLocker (used for full-disk encryption), as well as ensuring hypervisor code integrity. This makes it much harder for hackers to perform remote attacks on important systems, especially when this isn’t the only layer of security that stands in their way.

So, how do you know if your PC has support for the chip? There are two ways to do this. Let’s check these out!

How to find out if your PC has TPM 2.0 for Windows 11

The faster way to just find out if your PC has a TPM chip is through the “RUN” box where you can type commands.

Click Windows + R, then type in ‘tpm.msc‘ and click OK or hit Enter. Look for confirmation or a “Compatible TPM cannot be found” error. If you get the error message, you may still have the chip, but it may need to be enabled. You will need to turn it on in the BIOS.

If you want a more complete check to see whether your PC does support the new Windows 11, there is a utility for that. That takes us to the second, though much longer, way.

First, download, open, and install the PC Health Check app. Make sure the “Open Windows PC Health Check” box is checked and click Finish. Click Check now under Windows 11. The app will confirm or deny your support. Still here, there’s a chance you may still have a TPM chip, but it just needs to be enabled. You will need to turn it on in the BIOS.

Once you confirm that the chip is missing, you can opt to purchase it from an available distributor or your device manufacturer. Alternatively, to save yourself the hassle of having to open up the device to place it in there, you can choose to purchase a brand new PC with the updated TPM chip.

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