Windows 10 is the latest from family of Microsoft operating systems. It was launched in late July, 2015. And within a month of time span, it garnered more than 75 million installs unsurprisingly. Partly because this is Windows we’re talking about, mostly because Windows 10 Home and Professional editions are completely free of cost. If you’re using a genuine Windows 7 or 8.1, well, then, you’re qualified for free Windows 10 offer. The edition of Windows 10 which you will get depends upon the edition of Windows 7 or 8.1 you were using before.
For purposes of clarification, we are upgrading to Windows 10, not clean-installing it. Upgrade basically means that all of your installed programs, their configured settings and your files/folders will remain there, only operating system will change. Unlike in case of clean installing, where everything in operating system’s partition is wiped out, all programs are deleted and so their settings as well, and you’re left with a clean install.
The OS has received plenty of positive feedback and users all over the globe are looking to upgrade their PCs. However not all users are tech-savvy and require step-by-step instructions for upgrading.
Method 1: Already Reserved?
Before the official Windows 10 was released, users of Windows 7 and 8.1 with genuine product keys had the option of reserving their free upgrade. These users are/were supposed to be notified when the Windows would be released. So if you’re among users who reserved their free upgrade, instructions are different.
Whether you can upgrade or not depends upon whether your free upgrade has been delivered. Although Windows 10 has launched, but since this is the largest free upgrade event in Internet history, it is being released in waves to keep the experience smooth. So how do you check if your upgrade is delivered yet or not? Well, you can click Get Windows 10 app, click “Hamburger” icon (3 lines) and click “Check confirmation“. If you can’t wait till you get your free upgrade, then skip to Method 2 of this post for instructions on installing Windows 10 via Media Creation Tool.
Step 1 – If you’ve reserved your free upgrade via Get Windows 10 app (shown in the screenshot), then you will be notified when all installation files are downloaded in background. The installation files occupy 3GB in case data usage is your concern. If Windows 10 has been released to you, it will be downloaded in background automatically.
Step 2 – You should receive a notification when Windows would have downloaded, then you can install it.
Reserving & Upgrading
Microsoft has made the process of upgrading to Windows 10 easier for Windows 7 and 8/8.1 users through an app called “Get Windows 10” (update KB3035583). It is a little app that checks your hardware compatibility and makes the upgrade process smooth as silk. It is via this application that you can reserve your free upgrade as well as upgrade.
Step 1 – Click Windows-like icon located at the lower right besides tray (see screenshot). Get Windows 10 app will start.
Side note: If you don’t find this icon in your computer, it may be because your Windows Update is disabled, solution being enabling Windows Update, in most cases.
Step 2 – Click “Reserve your free upgrade” and your free upgrade will be reserved. Once you do this, Windows 10 installation files will start downloading in background automatically, provided it gets its free upgrade.
Step 3 – You will be notified via a desktop notification when Windows 10 files are downloaded. Thereafter you can upgrade the OS right away or schedule a time good for you. You can even tell the app your email address if you want an email notification.
If you can’t wait till you get your upgrade, you can cancel the reservation and go with Method 2.
Method 2: Do it Manually w/ Media Creation Tool
Upgrading via Media Creation Tool does not require you to reserve your Windows 10, so it may be a great way for upgrading for many of you who can’t find Get Windows 10 app icon. Media Creation Tool can be used for downloading ISO file, which can be used for clean-installing via USB.
Step 1 – First off, download Media Creation Tool. If your current OS is 32-bit, then go with 32-bit creation tool otherwise go with 64-bit’s.
Step 2 – Once the tool is downloaded, open it.
Step 3 – Choose “Upgrade this PC” option, then click Next. Don’t worry, you are not going to be required a product key. Because the upgrade is free of cost. Once done that, media creation tool will begin downloading the installation files. Since these are worth 3GB, it will take 2-3 hours, depending entirely upon downloading speed. That should not be a problem though, since it’s downloading the files and not installing them. Which means you can use your computer at the same time.
Step 4 – Once all files are downloaded, your computer will upgrade, which will take about 30-40 minutes. Meanwhile the process, your computer will restart several times. Voila! And your computer will then be on Windows 10, joining millions of others W10 users.
Get Windows 10 app is an optional way & in no way the compulsory way to upgrade to Windows 10. It bears resemblance to Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant and Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. If you got any questions, please do comment 🙂