Microsoft have announced that Windows 10 will be available as a free update on 29th July.
What can I expect from Windows 10?
Following complaints from users of Windows 8 and 8.1, this release will return users to a more familiar Windows 7 environment. Some of the more popular elements of Windows 8.1 will be retained.
The Start Menu is back, and there are improvements to the way you can multitask. The metro apps that run in full-screen on Windows 8.1 can now be opened as windows, so you can resize them and use them alongside other apps. The voice assistant Cortana, as seen on Windows Phone, will also be built into Windows 10.
Is it worth waiting before upgrading?
No. Windows 10 is the first version that has been through a period of beta testing. 4 million users have been trying out Windows 10 since October, and Microsoft have been fine-tuning the software based on feedback from its testers. When Windows 10 arrives with the general public next month, it should have far fewer problems than previous versions.
Is it really free?
Yes. For the first 12 months, Windows 10 will be offered as a completely free update, provided you are currently using Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 8.1. Most computers bought since 2009 fit into this bracket.
If you are still using an older system like Windows XP or Vista, you will be able to purchase Windows 10. Microsoft are expected to run promotions for a short period after launch, so updating won’t be expensive.
Does Windows 10 expire?
No. You have 12 months in which you can get hold of it for free, but once you have Windows 10 you own it for life.
How do I get hold of Windows 10?
As long as you currently have a computer with Windows 7 or newer, you will receive Windows 10 as a download on 29th July. This will arrive in the same way that you computer currently gets Windows Updates.
Starting from today (1st June), you should see a new Windows 10 icon in your system tray:
If you click on the new icon, you can reserve your Windows 10 upgrade. This means that Windows 10 will be downloaded onto your computer, as soon as it’s available. On 29th July your computer will then prompt you to install the update.
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