Trying out Windows 11 ahead of release just got a bit easier

Windows 11 logo in front of the new wallpaper
(Image credit: Microsoft)

The upcoming Windows 11 may just have become a whole lot more accessible for Windows Insiders. Microsoft has released the ISO image files for Windows 11, available to download for users enrolled in the Windows Insider program's developer and beta channels.

Before Windows 11 ISO images were made available, users enrolled in the Insider program would have needed to update from Windows 10 build 21354. But with the officially released ISO images, users can perform a fresh install of Windows 11 on a test PC or virtual machine, as reported by Neowin.

This simple change should encourage more Insiders to try out Windows 11, as they'll no longer need to upgrade from Windows 10 in order to try out the new operating system ahead of its launch later this year. 

Interested in trying out Windows 11 for yourself? You'll first need to sign up to the Windows Insider program to access the download page. But once you're through, you can download the official ISO images to perform a clean install using a test PC or a virtual machine.

Analysis: is Windows 11 on the right track?

Having the official Windows 11 ISO images ready to download instantly makes the OS more accessible to Insiders, and should alleviate the headaches (and potential unseen issues) of having to upgrade from the more stable Windows 10.

And if more users are available to try out Windows 11 for themselves, that's only a good thing for Microsoft, as the operating system has already seen its fair share of issues. 

Such issues include the OS being far more adamant that you use the Microsoft Edge browser, or outright requiring an internet connection to even install the operating system. But hey, at least Microsoft Paint is getting an overhaul.

That's not to say Windows 11 is getting everything wrong, though. On the contrary, the promising OS looks like it could avoid most of the mistakes set by its predecessors. 

For example, the Start menu is more customizable than ever. Microsoft Teams is getting a much-needed overhaul, too. Not to mention that Windows 11 is going all out for gaming, with Nvidia already preparing GPU drivers for the unreleased OS. 

In addition, Microsoft has said that Windows 11's design shouldn't have an impact on performance. If true, that's more processing power that can go towards productivity or gaming activities.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.