Windows 10 is available free to all Windows 7 and Windows 8 users. While it would be imprudent to tell you what to do regarding this much anticipated Windows update, there are some factors to consider which we don’t mind passing on – you provide the grain of salt! The methodology here was a simple search on our subject and then a careful combing through the data received to provide you with these golden nuggets of valuable opinion.
Now doesn’t it make sense to start with the source? What does Microsoft have to say for its new operating system (OS)?
- From the first step of reserving your free upgrade to seeing “What’s New,” this is very clearly the place to get informed.
- One interesting new feature is the biometric password.
- “Any device can carry your content, but only Windows gives you a truly personal experience. With Windows Hello, your device authenticates and recognizes you based on your presence, providing extra security, convenience, and even a friendly hello.”
- After telling us that the Windows Hello feature “will be available on select new devices coming soon,” we are footnoted to an important caveat – “Windows Hello requires specialized hardware, including fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor or other biometric sensors.” Right. There is that.
- The featured review on the Microsoft Windows 10 site (above) is this very thorough article from CNN.com. Doesn’t Microsoft own CNN.com?
- The article offers a view of screen shots from the new system as well as tips on how to get started. Definitely a great starting point if you’re convinced this is the way to go.
- Not convinced? The other reviews below offer a “pro vs. con” evaluation that basically comes down to, “For most people, it’s a great upgrade.”
- Feature-wise, Windows 10 is the new Windows 7. It’s robust, pleasant to use and free.
- Start menu is functionally excellent; Windows 8.1 users will miss some features.
- Windows 10 is free to Windows 7 or Windows 8 updates, around $100 to purchase the Home ver. and $200 for the Pro version.
- Windows 10 bridges the gap between PCs and tablets without alienating anyone. The new OS combines the best bits of old and new Windows features into a cohesive package, while correcting nearly all of the missteps of Windows 8.
- The upgrade process is mostly painless, and free for most Windows 7 and 8 users.
- Many of the new features will be lost on those who don’t care about touch.
- Cortana’s features are better suited for smartphones.
- New OS full of fresh features:
- Fast Internet Explorer replacement called Edge;
- Cortana – Microsoft’s Siri-like voice-controlled virtual assistant;
- Ability to stream real-time games to your desktop from an Xbox One in another room, a great business application.
- “Windows 10 is the end of cloud-free computing.” The Verge seems to have in mind the fact that Windows 10 has a two-way channel open for user information data being sent back to Microsoft servers. “[Windows 10] is always phoning home.”
- Reached by Ars Technica, Microsoft was quick to defend itself, saying, “No query or search usage data is sent to Microsoft, in accordance with the customer’s chosen privacy settings.” Most of the data is anonymized usage logging, not inherently a privacy concern.
- The Start Menu is back and it’s better than ever.
- A significant upgrade over Windows 7 and 8.
- Mail and Calendar apps not available without Microsoft account.
- Cortana is powerful and useful
- If you’ve already upgraded, some helpful tips to try out
- How to change the security settings to stop Feedback.
- To turn them off, first head to Settings > Privacy.
- Toggle all the settings here to off.
- Next, select Feedback & diagnostics from the menu on the left.
- Under Feedback Frequency, select ‘Never’.
- “We may as well refer to Windows 10 as a date, or an hour, as much as an operating system. It’s a moment in time. A month from now, it will have changed, evolved, improved. But right now? Microsoft has shipped an operating system that was meticulously planned and executed with panache, but whose coat of fresh paint hides some sticks and baling wire.”
- Cortana, the digital assistant of the future, but Edge browser isn’t fully baked. [Apparently, there are a lot of new apps we could all exist without.]
- Free Windows 10 makes expensive software changes
- The eagle eyes over at tech blog Alphr have spotted a remarkable permission in the Windows 10’s services agreement: the operating system has the right to scan all software and hardware on your computer and disable anything it believes is illegal.
- Section 7b reads: “We may automatically check your version of the software and download software updates or configuration changes, including those that prevent you from accessing the [Windows] Services, playing counterfeit games, or using unauthorized hardware peripheral devices.”
- If you’re running Windows 10 and don’t like this, too late. Users have to agree to all terms in the Windows 10 services agreement before it will install.
- Windows 10 Warning: Latest Updates Are Crashing PCs
- ‘KB 3081438′ was pushed to Windows 10 users on Friday and the ever alert InfoWorld has spotted reports popping up around the web of users who find the update will only partially install, get stuck, then force their computers to reboot. After rebooting Windows 10 automatically begins reinstalling KB 3081438 again and the endless cycle has begun.
- [This warning was given early in the release cycle and is doubtless resolved.]
- Two important considerations:
- You don’t have to upgrade. Register for the free Windows 10 upgrade and then choose when you actually install the operating system. How to upgrade to Windows 10
- You can always roll back to your previous version of Windows. When you perform an in-place upgrade, Microsoft saves the old version of your Windows on your hard disk. Try the new system and then, if you don’t like it or experience problems, you can revert to your prior problems.
Be careful not to delete the files Microsoft saved. Whenever making changes of this kind, it is best to perform a back-up first, just in case.
- Most people will find an upgrade to Windows 10 beneficial. Current impression is that it’s more stable than Windows 7, gets rid of all of the annoying interface mistakes that Microsoft made with Windows 8, and it’s the future of the Windows platform.
[Are there special reasons why you may not want to upgrade? Follow the further discussion provided in the rest of the review.]
If you jumped here to the conclusion, not wanting to wade through all those reviews, here’s the bottom line: Go ahead and upgrade to Windows 10. Why?
- It is an improvement over Windows 7 and 8
- It is free,
- It can be rolled back,
- It has Cortana, Microsoft’s personal assistant improvement over Siri, which all agree is indeed a powerful improvement.