Like Windows 11 Home edition, the Windows 11 Pro edition will require an internet connection and a Microsoft account during initial device setup, Microsoft says.
The news came in a blog announcing features and fixes in Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22557 posted on Dev Channel. The requirement will likely be required as part of the out-of-the-box experience (OOBE) in future releases, the company says.
“Similar to Windows 11 Home Edition, Windows 11 Professional Edition now requires internet connectivity only during initial device setup (OOBE),” the company says. “If you choose to configure the device for personal use, MSA will also be required for configuration. You can expect Microsoft account to be required on future WIP flights.
This means that new installations of Windows 11 Pro will require both a Microsoft account and an internet connection during installation.
Windows 11 Home users since its launch last fall have already been required to connect to the internet and create a Microsoft account, and Windows 11 Pro is now no longer the option for users who wanted to bypass this requirement. and create a local account.
This will make it difficult to provision Windows 11 Pro devices in areas where the internet connection is unreliable.
Unless Microsoft changes course, this change will likely roll out to all users later this year.
Microsoft, like most other big tech companies, is moving aggressively towards the cloud, and this decision only reaffirms that.
Now, users who only want to create a local account will need to create a dummy Microsoft account and switch it to a local account.
Unsurprisingly, IT pros aren’t thrilled with Microsoft’s move, and it doesn’t do much to convince r/sysadmin subreddit to move their organizations to Windows 11. However, they won’t have much choice in a few years, as Windows 10 Home and Pro are scheduled to retire in October 2025.
Meanwhile, Enterprise LTSC 2021 versions will retire in January 2027 and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise LTSC in January 2032.