Windows 10 older CPU cut-off: what you need to know

Microsoft's newest way of working with Windows – Windows 10 specifically – limits the hardware a person can use if they want updates. This might not seem crazy to the average PC user – it might even make a lot of sense in a very basic way. You want new software, you need new hardware, right? Not quite so fast there, buckaroo.

Why would anyone be displeased about this?

Some users used to the old ways of hardware and software on Intel and AMD chips and cards are not pleased. This is the beginning of the age of Windows as a Service – not the same as Windows as a piece of software. It's no longer as simple as all that. These folks aren't happy because they want to be able to run whatever hardware they wish without Microsoft having a say in what their performance needs to be.

Microsoft's statement this week included the following regarding their Windows as a Service model. "A combination of hardware, driver and firmware support is required to have a good Windows 10 experience." As such, hardware is no longer good enough for Windows 10 – some experiences, that is.

What chips are out?

Windows 10 CU update excludes these PCs

Microsoft suggests that Intel Clover Trail Atom Processors require "additional hardware support to provide the best possible experience when updating to the latest Windows 10 feature update, the Windows 10 Creators Update." These piece of hardware are at their "End of Interactive Support", and as Microsoft suggests, "they may be incapable of moving to the Windows 10 Creators Update without a potential performance impact."

Of course, Intel never supported Windows 10 on Clover Trail. Then Bay Trail was first on the list of Intel Atom systems on chips to get Windows 10 support after that.

Those Intel Clover Trail systems that are not qualified for the Creators Update will get their own update. That'll be equivalent to the Windows 10 Anniversary Update – and it'll be JUST fine for them.

Security Updates

"To keep our customers secure, we will provide security updates to these specific devices running the Windows 10 Anniversary Update until January of 2023, which aligns with the original Windows 8.1 extended support period," said Microsoft. This means that while new features won't be appearing for these users, they'll still remain secure. Gotta keep those computers locked up tight, even if they can't have all the features the newest machines can.