Q: I have a lot of custom software on my “Windows 10 Home” PC that may not work on Windows 11. As a result, I don’t want to upgrade to Windows 11 until I can no longer get security updates for Windows 10. But it seems to prevent Windows 11 is difficult. What do you suggest?
David Hintz, Blaine
TO: There are several ways to avoid installing Windows 11 on your PC. And it’s a perfectly reasonable strategy if you prefer to keep using the Home or Pro versions of Windows 10 until Microsoft stops providing you with security updates in October 2025.
Here are the methods, ranging from sensible to impractical to risky:
- If your PC lacks a certain computer chip, it can’t handle Windows 11 and you can forget about updating. The chip, called “Trusted Platform Module” version 2.0 (see tinyurl.com/2p8urcun), is located on the main circuit board and handles various security-related tasks such as data encryption. If your PC lacks this chip, Microsoft will not allow you to download Windows 11 onto your PC. (To find out if your PC has the chip, see tinyurl.com/26v2ejd6).
- If you download and install Windows 11 on your PC, you have 10 days to get back to Windows 10 without losing any personal data. To do that, go to Windows 11 Settings, click “system”, then click “recovery.” Select “back”. Follow the instructions and your PC will revert to Windows 10. After 10 days, this process does not work. (See tinyurl.com/nytzp4x8.)
- Windows 11 is installed using Windows 10’s “Windows Update” feature, which can be paused for seven days. If you’re willing to keep pausing updates every seven days, you’ll never get Windows 11. However, you won’t get any other updates, including security updates, so this method isn’t practical for anything other than a temporary delay. in obtaining the new operating system. (For details on this and the following methods to block Windows 11 download, see tinyurl.com/2p8ph86y.)
- You can disable Windows 10 “update services”, which means that Windows will never update unless you tell it to. Like pausing the Windows update, this is not practical in the long run.
- If you use Windows 10 Home, you can edit your PC’s registry, a database of settings, to prevent Windows 11 from downloading to your PC. However, I advise against making changes to a PC’s registry because if you make a mistake, the PC may not work.
- Readers using Windows 10 Pro can make changes to the “Local Group Policy Editor” that will prevent Windows 11 from being downloaded. Experts find using the Local Group Policy Editor a safer way to make changes to the PC to use the registry.
Q: I want to install a video doorbell and some external cameras, but I don’t know enough about home security systems. Are there beginner’s guides to video home safety?
Anthony Adamczyk, Manchester, Connecticut.
TO: Consumer Reports last January contains a home security camera buying guide (tinyurl.com/4u4w7x7x). Discuss the pros and cons of using wireless video doorbells and security cameras, and how to decide what you need. Tom’s Guide online for September (tinyurl.com/rjcnx7s8) compares DIY home security systems, most of which have the option of connecting to external professional monitoring services.
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