It goes a long way back, Johnny! Microsoft caused quite a commotion when it mandated technologies like TPM and Secure Boot as base requirements for its modern operating system.
Back in June last year, when the company announced Windows 11 for the first time, eyeballs were focused on the minimum system requirements that the software titan had put in place for its shiny new operating system.
These strict requirements meant that even CPUs that were a couple of generations old were deemed unsupported for Windows 11.
Although the company revised its compatible processors list and added more Intel chips, requirements like Trusted Platform Module version 2.0 and Secure Boot remained unchanged. The company later explained how these technologies took security on the new OS to the next level.
And it went so far as to demonstrate a successful hacker attack on a system with these disabled.
If you are wondering when exactly did Redmond get the idea of adding these requirements to its platform, well we now have some insights.
Did you know that Cobalt build 21327 is the earliest public build to mention that a TPM module would block your system from installing "Sun Valley"? pic.twitter.com/loUqZvM78c
— Xeno (@XenoPanther) August 27, 2022
Microsoft first baked them in back in the Windows 10 days, with build 21327 being the first version where these hardware requirements were first sighted. The appraiserres.dll file contained these system checks and blocked you from installing Sun Valley if you did not pass them.
This was discovered by famed leaker Xeno, who went back in time to spot these requirements.
Of course, having a requirement in place is entirely another thing than enforcing them. That’s because the community quickly found bypasses to these checks, with even the company endorsing the TPM bypass to install Windows 11 on older machines.
While it has become clear that the main reason these restrictions are in place are for business customers, these technologies are also being used by game developers to prevent cheating.
At the end of the day, things quietly settled in place.
As they usually do.