Two ways you can upgrade your Windows 11 Home to Windows 11 Pro
Most new computers or laptops are issued with a Windows 11 or Windows 10 Home operating system. Although the Home edition is totally fine for most basic users, it will likely offer only limited functionality and features. But, if you are a professional or a business user, you might want to utilize the additional functionalities of the Windows 11 Pro edition such as Remote Desktop, Mobile Device Management, BitLocker Drive Encryption, and Group Policy, to the fullest.
The Windows 11 Pro edition gears more towards professional and enterprise-managed PCs. It will include all the functions and features of the Home edition, but with some unique additional functionalities.
Windows 11 has several editions, like Home, Professional, Enterprise, and Education. Each edition contains different features tailored to different users. However, you cannot upgrade Windows 11 Home to Windows 11 Enterprise edition – for this, you’ll need to make a clean installation of the Enterprise edition with an Enterprise product key. As of now, you can only upgrade the Windows 11 Home edition to Windows 11 Pro without reinstalling the OS.
In this tutorial, we’ll show you how you can upgrade from Windows 11 Home to Windows 11 Professional edition through the Windows Store or with the Pro product key.
Windows 11 Home vs Pro Edition
For the general public, it comes down to Windows 11 Home and Windows 11 Pro edition. These are the two editions you will find in most stores or pre-installed on new PCs. Both are meant for different kinds of consumers.
The Home edition is the basic variant meant for regular consumers at home. On the other hand, the Pro Edition is better suitable for business users or professionals, usually, for people using the device for work. In addition, Windows 11 Pro has a bunch of additional security and business-based features. Here’s a table listing all the major differences between Windows 11 Home and Pro.
|Feature||Windows 11 Home||Windows 11 Pro|
|Set up OS with a local account||No||Yes|
|Join Microsoft Azure Active Directory (AD)||No||Yes|
|Support for Active Directory||No||Yes|
|Microsoft Remote Desktop||Client only||Yes|
|BitLocker device encryption||No||Yes|
|Join a Domain||No||Yes|
|Mobile device management (MDM)||No||Yes|
|Firewall and network protection||Yes||Yes|
|Find my device||Yes||Yes|
|Windows Information Protection||No||Yes|
|Enterprise State Roaming with Azure||No||Yes|
|Windows Update for Business||No||Yes|
|Kiosk mode setup||No||Yes|
|Maximum supported RAM||128 GB||2TB|
|Maximum no. of CPUs||1||2|
|Maximum no. of CPU cores||64||128|
|Multiple Desktops and Snap||Yes||Yes|
|Upgradable to Enterprise Edition||No||Yes|
Both Home and Pro editions share the same basic and core functions. Only, the Home edition lacks some of the sophisticated security and connectivity features available in the Pro edition. If the Windows 11 Home edition doesn’t have the feature you want, then you will need to upgrade to Windows 10 Pro. Once you’ve made your mind to upgrade, this guide is yours.
If you’re unsure of your Windows version, right-click the Start menu and select ‘Settings’. Or hold Windows+I to launch the Window Settings app.
Click the ‘System’ tab in the Settings app. Scroll and select the ‘About’ setting.
You’ll see your Windows 11 edition on the About settings page, under the Windows specifications.
You will need a valid product key or a digital license to upgrade from Windows 11 Home to Windows 11 Pro. Or you will have to purchase an upgrade through the Microsoft store.
Upgrade Windows 11 Home to Pro via Microsoft Store
As of now, Windows 11 is not listed on the Microsoft Store, so you’ll need to start the upgrade from the Settings app. The license for upgrading from Home to Pro edition will cost you around ‘$100’. For this to work, you must have Windows 10 Home installed on your PC with a genuine license. If you don’t have Windows 10 Home, the new Pro edition will cost you around $199.99.
First open Windows Settings by right-clicking the Start Menu (Windows icon) and selecting the ‘Settings’ or by pressing Windows+I.
Then, select ‘System’ on the left panel, scroll down the System Settings on the right and select the ‘Activation’ option.
Alternatively, you can select the ‘About’ option at the bottom of the ‘System’ Settings.
On the About Settings page, select the ‘Product key and activation’ option under Related settings.
Either way, it will take you to the Windows 11 Activation settings page. Here, expand the ‘Upgrade your edition of Windows’ section. As you can see, you have two options to upgrade, either by changing the product key (which we will see in the next section) or purchasing the upgrade in the Microsoft Store app.
Now, click the ‘Open Store’ button next to buy an upgraded license in the Microsoft Store app.
Microsoft Store will show you feature differences between Home and Pro editions of Windows with the option to buy the upgrade. Click on the ‘Buy’ button to get the new pro license. The upgrade (Pro license) will cost around ‘$99’ for Windows 11 Home users. In the below screenshot, the cost is in Indian rupee, but it should cost around $99 and the price may change depending on the currency and region.
Then, enter your computer’s password or PIN in the Windows Security prompt box.
In the next window, click ‘Next’.
Then, fill in the billing details if you haven’t already.
Once the purchase is complete, applying the upgrade. Then, restart your PC to enable the new features of the Pro edition. Now, your PC is upgraded to Windows 11 Pro.
Upgrade Windows 11 Home to Pro with Product Key
You can also upgrade from Windows 11 Home to Windows 11 Pro using a product key of Windows 10 Pro for free. You can transfer Windows 8/8.1 Pro or Windows 7 Pro keys to install and activate Windows 11 Pro as well.
If you don’t have a product key for Windows 11 Pro, you can buy one from the Microsoft website or a reputable online retail store. If you have a Pro product key you must remove the license from the previous system and apply the same key on the new PC. Follow the steps to upgrade your Windows 11 Home to Pro for free:
First, open the Windows Settings app, and click the ‘System’ tab on the left panel. Then, select the ‘Activation’ option on the right.
Expand the ‘Upgrade your edition of Windows’ option on the Activation page and click the ‘Change’ button next to the ‘Change product key’.
You may require to provide administrator permission to run the Windows Activation tool. An ‘Enter a product key’ window will then appear. Here, enter your Windows 10 or older version Pro product key and click ‘Next’.
Next, click the ‘Start’ button to begin the upgradation process.
Once the upgradation is complete, your PC will automatically restart to update the changes. If not, restart your PC manually to apply all the Windows 11 Pro changes.
Upgrade Windows 11 Home to Pro using Command Prompt
You can also Upgrade Windows 11 Home to Pro using Command Prompt. This method also requires a product key of Windows 11 Pro or Windows 7, 8, 8.1, or 10 Pro.
First, open Command Prompt as Administrator. To do that, search for ‘Command Prompt’ or ‘cmd’ on Windows search. Then, select the ‘Run as administrator’ option from the right.
Find Windows 11 Product Key
First of all, it is essential to find your Windows 11 Product Key and save it somewhere. You can skip this part if you already have/know your product key. If your Windows OS was pre-installed on your computer, it will probably have a digital license.
It is always advisable to have a backup (physical note) of your product key before changing it. The motherboard of your computer usually stores the digital license. Another easy place to find the digital license/product key is the physical copy of your Windows. But chances are that you may have misplaced/thrown away the box Windows came in. There are many such negligent reasons to not have your product key at hand.
Nonetheless, there’s no need to panic if you don’t have a physical copy of your product key. You can easily unearth it on your computer. Here’s how – type the following command and hit ‘Enter‘ in an elevated Command prompt.
wmic path softwareLicensingService get OA3xOriginalProductKey
Changing Product Key to Upgrade Edition
Type the following commands, in the same order, after noting your existing product key. Press Enter after each.
This command will uninstall the current product key. Click ‘OK’ on the prompt.
This command will clear the product key from the registry. Click ‘OK’ on the prompt.
This command will clear the Key management service machine name. Now, the product key is out of your OS.
Now, type or copy and paste the following command and press Enter.
DISM /online /Get-TargetEditions
The list of editions your Windows can be upgraded to will appear on the screen.
You can only upgrade to Windows 10 Pro if you see ‘Target edition: Professional’ in the list.
Type the following command to upgrade the edition (replace the sample product key with your Pro product key)
sc config LicenseManager start= auto & net start LicenseManager sc config wuauserv start= auto & net start wuauserv changepk.exe /productkey RK8FG-HTPTM-9C7SM-9PMIT-3VS55 exit
Now, wait for the upgrade process to complete and then, restart your system.
If you wish to roll back to the Windows 11 Home Edition, remove the Pro key using the commands shown above and use your Home product key to downgrade to the Home Edition. However, your computer will automatically activate the Home edition after removing the Pro product key only if you have an OEM license (digital license).