How to find and install the TPM 2.0 module on a Windows PC

Microsoft recently introduced Windows 11 to the world that comes with some cool new features. While the stable version of Windows 11 will drop in late fall, it does come with a set of prerequisites that must be met for a free upgrade from Windows 10 to Windows 11.

A key requirement for Windows 11 is to have a TPM 2.0 chip installed and Secure Boot enabled. Several existing Windows users were left with questions like what is TPM 2.0? Do I have a TPM 2.0 chip? Do I need a TPM module for Windows 11? How to install TPM 2.0 on Windows? Well, we answer all your questions.

What is TPM 2.0?

TPM stands for Trusted Platform Module. It is a hardware module that is used for safe boot and to verify the integrity of the system. It is also used by the Windows operating system for file and disk encryption along with BitLocker.

TPM 2.0 was released in 2019. It is the latest version and an update over TPM 1.2 that was released in 2011. Most of the latest premium and enterprise-grade laptops / PCs released after 2016 have TPM 2.0 installed. In case you are not sure about the TPM version, here is an easy way to check in Windows 10 and Windows 7.

Check / change TPM version and status

To check if you have a TPM module, press Win + R to activate the Run prompt and writes tpm.msc. Then hit Enter.

tpm.msc in the run menu

On the TPM management page, you will see your TPM status. In my case, the status is “The TPM is ready to use.” You can even see the TPM version at the bottom under TPM Manufacturer Information.

tpm management menu windows 10

If the status of your TPM module is disabled, you must enable it in the UEFI firmware configuration menu. The menu options are different for each laptop depending on the manufacturer. Generally, you can find the TPM option under Security or Advanced Settings. The TPM module is called PTT for Intel processors and fTPM for AMD processors.

Does my motherboard have a TPM header?

Now if your PC doesn’t have a TPM chip, don’t worry. Most motherboards have a TPM header and you can install a TPM module manually. If you’re not sure, you can check your motherboard manufacturer’s site. You just need to Google your motherboard model number and check the tech specs on the ‘manufacturer’s site’.

For example, let’s pick the ROG Strix-B450F motherboard. On the Asus site, if you check the technical specs, you will see the TPM header under the I / O ports. This means that the Asus B450F motherboard has an option to install the TPM module.

internal I / O ports for b450f

If you can’t find the information on the manufacturer’s site, you can also physically inspect your motherboard. It’s usually around the RGB header or COM ports. For reference, on the ROG Strix B450F, the TPM header is next to the COM port.

tpm header on asus b450f

How to install the TPM 2.0 module

If your PC has a TPM header, you can easily get a TPM 2.0 module for your motherboard. This will make your PC compatible with Windows 11 if it meets other requirements.

However, finding the correct TPM 2.0 module is the difficult part. You need to get the exact pin number and pin layout from your motherboard’s TPM header. For example, let’s take the B450F motherboard mentioned above again. The manual says it has a PIN 14-1 header with the following PIN layout. So I have to buy a 14-1 PIN TPM 2.0 module.

You need to make sure that the TPM module you buy has the same PIN layout as its TPM header. More importantly, it has the same PIN lock. In my case, the TPM module must have a lock PIN in the fifth row. For reference, below is the image of my TPM header layout.

tpm 14-1 pin header layout

It is recommended to buy a TPM module from the same company as your motherboard maker. Furthermore, due to growing demand, the prices of TPM modules have peaked. They are also hard to find on Amazon, BestBuy, or Walmart. Here is a TPM module that I found at B&H with a fair price.

If in doubt, it is best to contact the motherboard manufacturer’s customer service. Better guide you to the correct TPM module

Once you buy your TPM module, install it on the motherboard. You must enable the TPM module from the UEFI firmware menu. Most TPM modules, if supported, work out of the box without any installation. However, they require a system reboot.

Final words: install TPM 2.0 on a Windows PC

As noted above, most computers should already have TPM 2.0 installed on their motherboard. For many users, it is disabled by default. We have written a detailed guide on how to enable TPM and Secure Boot from the UEFI boot menu. In case your Windows computer came without a TPM chip, it’s easy to buy one online. You can install it manually or take your computer to a repair shop. It shouldn’t take long. You only need a compatible motherboard.

Read also: Top 11 Windows 11 Features You Should Know About

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