Here’s yet another theory that could partially explain why Windows 11 doesn’t support anything below Intel 8th Gen: Something’s really borked in Skylake (Intel 6th Gen), and operating systems are eager to get away from it. And, when possible, the refresh (7th gen).
- Windows 11 doesn’t support Skylake, but does support a few Kaby Lake processors (i7-7820HQ, some Intel X-series).
- macOS 13 cut off support for every Mac that wasn’t Kaby Lake. Even though there were some Skylake models with the same design (the MacBook Pro 2016)…
- In 2016, Microsoft announced that Windows 7 and 8.1 would not support Skylake or Kaby Lake systems after 2017. “This enables us to focus on deep integration between Windows and the silicon, while maintaining maximum reliability and compatibility with previous generations of platform and silicon.”
There are good alternative motives for all of those events (Windows 11 wanting HVCI and MBEC, macOS trying to phase out Intel, Microsoft trying to heavily push Windows 10)… but when you add them all up, and factor in an ex-Intel engineer saying Skylake pushed Apple over the edge due to “abnormally bad” QA, it begins to look like Skylake is something everyone wants to drop as soon as possible. Or, at a minimum, claim they are not responsible for supporting.
Now, what is this bug? We know there’s a major hyperthreading bug, but it most likely is whatever requires the most invasive fixes… or maybe it’s just the sheer abundance of tiny little paper cuts (Apple allegedly finding more bugs than Intel themselves) that becomes the issue. This has been backed up by Microsoft commentators as potentially being the source of the particularly buggy-at-first Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 (aka “Surfacegate”).