Tip: Upgrade to Windows 11 Version 22H2 Today

Posted on May 26, 2022 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 11 with 18 Comments

Microsoft quietly finalized Windows 11 version 22H2 this week, but you don’t need to wait until September or October to upgrade. Here’s how.

I’ve identified two simple ways to upgrade today (assuming you’re on Windows 11 version 21H2, which is the original shipping version of the product), and I’ve tried both. They are:

Upgrade through the Windows Insider Program

Open Settings (WINKEY + I), navigate to Windows Update, and check for and install any pending updates, rebooting as needed. Then, navigate to Settings > Windows Update > Windows Insider Program to enroll your PC temporarily in the Windows Insider Program. Select “Get Started,” link your Microsoft account as prompted, and then choose “Beta Channel (Recommended)” and select “Continue” twice. Then, select “Reboot now” to reboot.

When the PC reboots, sign in, open Settings, and navigate to Windows Update. If it doesn’t do so automatically, check for updates and let it download “Windows 11 Insider Preview 22621.1 (ni_release).”

That could take a while, but once it prompts you to reboot, do so, and it will upgrade the PC to Windows 11 22H2. When it’s done, sign in normally.

Upgrade with the ISO

After making sure your PC is up-to-date via Windows Update (as above), use your web browser to navigate to the Windows Insider Preview Downloads website. Sign in with the Microsoft account you use for the Windows Insider Program, refresh the page if needed, and then scroll down to the “Select edition” section. From the “Select edition” drop-down menu, select “Windows 11 Insider Preview (Beta Channel) – Build 22621,” click “Confirm,” and then download the ISO (“Windows11_InsiderPreview_Client_x64_en-us_22621.iso”) to your computer. This is the final build of Windows 11 22H2.

When that’s done, find the ISO, double-click it to mount it in your file system and open a File Explorer window, and then double-click Setup.exe to get Setup started.

Step through the Windows 11 Setup application as prompted, noting that once it hits this full-screen blue interface, it could reboot at any time.

It should take 20-30 minutes to complete. When it’s done, sign in normally.

And don’t forget to…

Using either method, you will want to open Settings and navigate to Windows Update > Windows Insider Program after the update is complete. There, you will find an option called “Unenroll this device when the next version of Windows releases” under the “Stop getting builds” section. Be sure to check (enable) this option. That way, you will be back on stable once 22H2 ships officially and will simply get updates each month normally going forward.

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Comments (18)

18 responses to “Tip: Upgrade to Windows 11 Version 22H2 Today”

  1. will

    So I am confused as to what the point of the "Beta" ring is if the build of Windows is final. I guess to test some updates before they show up? I would have expected, and would like to have seen, more work on Windows 11 for the next month or two. Finishing it up in late June.

    This whole idea that the next version needs to be on PC's before school starts is not really a thing IMO as you can just get updates monthly like every other version of Windows. But maybe it is a way to say "this is the best selling version of Windows" or some other statement.

    • Bart

      AFAIK 22H2 doesn't ship until some time in October. You getting on to 22H2 basically still puts you on a beta build as this version will be updated until that time. It will be 'finalised' when rolling out to the broad public.

      The term 'finalised' is used a bit loose by a lot of news outlets IMHO. Because although, the build number remains the same, it definitely doesn't mean 22H2 is done.

      • lwetzel

        But my experience in the past is that updates do occur just as they would on your present build. This method just gets you there as a CHASER. In the end you will have the new version as the new version comes out to the masses.

    • ralfred

      Beta is “ahead” of stable. When nearing a new release of stable, beta will be kept “closer” to stable, so bugs can be ironed out. As others have pointed out, the term “Final” is not true - bugs will still be squashed and provide a better stable build when it is officially released. When stable has been released, beta will jump ahead again.

  2. nuwanda

    Paul, you wrote at the article's end:

    And don’t forget to… Using either method, you will want to open Settings and navigate to Windows Update > Windows Insider Program after the update is complete. There, you will find an option called “Unenroll this device when the next version of Windows releases” under the “Stop getting builds” section. Be sure to check (enable) this option.

    If you updated using the .ISO file, you don't have to be enrolled to the Insider Program, so there is no 'stop getting builds' section. So this 'don't forget to' is not for 'Using either method' but just for the Insiders. Right?

  3. maflynn

    Just to state the obvious - you're installing a beta version of the OS.

  4. benhaube

    Thanks, Paul! I am updating now. I wanted to try it on my ThinkPad X1 but I wanted to be able to get back off the insider builds after. Now that I know that I can I am going for it. Interestingly enough, once I entered the Insider Beta Channel the update would not show up for me, so I ended up installing off the ISO anyway. I guess maybe there is a delay before the update comes?

  5. spewak

    As long as they fixed the "Fixed an issue which could result in Smart App Control unexpectedly blocking correctly signed applications." issue which I was experiencing.

  6. bostonsteve

    Isn't the whole need to tie up the release before the end June thing have to due with the Azure engineering team grabbing the Windows "Core" release then. I remember them syncing those schedules a few years back.

    Still there's another month before that deadline. I guess June is a vacation month now.

  7. jwpear

    What's the reason for getting on this version early? I haven't really seen much that seems compelling. Are the sanity improvements to Start and the taskbar? Am I missing something?

    • CocoTheMii

      The Start menu and taskbar have been improved in 22H2, yes. Start now supports app folders and allows you to reduce the number of recommendations for more icon space. The taskbar also now supports drag-and-drop exactly as it worked in Windows 10.

      • benhaube

        I love the start menu improvements, but there are still a few things they could do to make it better. The first thing I did when I updated was put all my start menu apps into folders.

  8. dftf

    Tip: or you can stay on Windows 10, which will continue to get security-updates until October 2025, and I'm not aware of any software yet which explicitly require 11?

    (If you some who is still on Windows 7 though: no more Chrome or Edge browser-updates after January, and Windows Defender and Microsoft Security Essentials definition-updates will cease too. So ideally update to 10, or at-least look-into the 0patch company and install Firefox LTS, which will likely offer an extra year-or-two of security-updates. Windows 8.1 also ends support in January... but I can't imagine there are many still using it!)

  9. bob25

    Tried to download the ISO, but always get "ERROR. Try again later."

  10. me

    thanks for dip. worth it just to have folder previews/thumbnails back.