Live11, Windows 11 Live Disk That Runs in RAM, Available for Download
Some remember the days when all operating systems booted from floppy disks. However, for decades, almost every computer stores his OS on internal drives such as hard drives or his SSD. But what if you just want to try Windows 11 on your computer without actually installing it? Enter Live11, which has just been made available for download, and you’ll be running Windows 11 Pro without writing a single file to disk.
Live11 is a new lightweight Windows 11 live disc from NTDEV, the developers behind Tiny11.rear image download (opens in new tab) You can burn NTDEV’s Internet Archive submissions to a USB flash drive, microSD card, or DVD-R if you still have an optical drive. In fact, NTDEV intentionally reduced the disc image to 4.4GB, which fits in his 4.7GB capacity on DVD.
Live discs (also known as live DVDs or live CDs) have been common in the Linux world for some time and have been used to allow users to try out flavors of Linux before deciding whether to install them. . However, running a Windows 11 live disc is more interesting than useful.
You can use Live11 to see the Windows 11 UI on a PC you’re considering upgrading from Windows 10, but it’s not a very realistic simulation of what it would be like to actually run the OS. It’s a stripped-down version of Windows 11, so it uses fewer resources than a real installation. Also, it doesn’t actually write to disk, so you can’t save settings or install apps permanently. If you want a permanent version of Windows that you can save to a USB flash drive, see our tutorial on how to create a portable Windows 11 disk.
Let’s use Live11
To see what Live11 is like, I downloaded the ISO and booted it into a virtual machine using VMWare Workstation 16. NTDEV says Live11 can run in a variety of virtual machines, or boot entire computers from it, but it runs in Oracle VirtualBox. Doesn’t require any disk space, but at least 8GB of RAM. Windows 11 system requirements, a TPM or a Microsoft account, are generally not required.
The first thing I noticed is that Live11 uses the Grub4DOS boot manager.
Then launch Live11 and it will run a shortened version of the Windows 11 installation process. First you will be asked which country you are in, which keyboard you want and then which privacy settings you want to turn on. Then check for updates and let it wait a minute or two to “install”. NTDEV says he intentionally made the installation question part of his boot process so users know this is an unmodified version of Windows 11.
Live11 is a read-only experience, even on a rewritable USB flash drive. It actually installs on a 3.99GB RAM disk with 319MB free for data during the session, but it can fill up with temporary files. After “installing”, the default desktop of Windows 11 Pro showed the familiar blue flower wallpaper. You were automatically logged in with a local account with username Administrator. The Windows 11 Pro build on the ISO is currently 22621.1555.
There are only a handful of preloaded apps such as Notepad, Paint, Snipping Tool and Terminal. Microsoft Edge is not installed, but you can run a portable version of Mozilla Firefox by opening it from the live disk. It’s a shame that the browser isn’t preloaded because it’s a pain to go to disk to find the Firefox executable, and every time you open Firefox, you’re prompted with installation questions like pin it to the taskbar, etc. is. You can ignore these prompts and start browsing.
With no programs running, the OS used only 1.89 GB of RAM (in addition to the 4 GB reserved by the RAM disk). It ran smoothly on a VM with 16 GB of RAM and 4 CPU cores. I was able to access the local 60 GB SSD I assigned to the VM, but I had to mount and format it first. This is considered local storage, so anything you save there will remain for future sessions.
Given that my C drive only has about 300MB of free space, if I want to download anything, I have to download it to another drive. Even without downloading any files, I just ran portable Firefox and found that my C drive was almost full (maybe using virtual memory and cache space). I asked NTDEV if it would be possible to make the RAM disk larger than 4GB and he said it would be possible if I extracted the relevant VHM file of him from the Live11 ISO, unpacked it and recreated the ISO. .
NTDEV also told me that the VM drivers are pre-installed. So I started with a resolution of 1024 x 768, but could change up to 3840 x 2160 or higher if I wanted. If you’re using a real PC instead of a VM, your resolution selection may be different.
Overall, I was impressed with the speed of the Live11 and how quickly and easily I could open some apps. If you want to try Download latest ISO (opens in new tab) And try. Please note, however, that this is not an officially supported Windows image and is not guaranteed or supported.