Windows 10 is the next best thing coming from Microsoft. Here’s a few things to keep in mind when you’re considering the switch.
Windows 10 is free for most people – but if you’re running
Windows 7 or
Windows 8.1. Don’t worry, you have one year, until July 29th, 2016 to make the jump. If you miss out on the free upgrade for whatever reason, it’ll cost $119. To upgrade your existing installation, look for the windows icon in your notification bar – and enroll
Once the update is available for your system, it’ll prompt you to install. If you need to, you can put it off until you’re ready to make the switch. It can take a few days as Windows 10 is rolled out to all users, so don’t despair if it doesn’t appear immediately for you. If you’ve been regularly updating windows and the icon doesn’t appear for you, simple, just visit this link to do it manually.
During the reservation process, Windows will let you know if you have any incompatible hardware – make sure to install any updates for your devices beforehand so that you can use them with windows 10.
Windows 10 can be installed without you having to lose any files or settings! Some things will change and require reconfiguration, but if you’re coming from Windows 8.1 or Windows 7, everything should remain as you had it beforehand. After the upgrade, if you want to do a complete reinstall you’ll have the option for that as well. Just make sure you have your Windows Serial Key handy (if you lost it, use this script or Ultimate PID Checker to grab it from your system) and create a bootable DVD or USB.
Windows 10 brings a number of performance tweaks and other optimizations. If you’re using a graphics card, you’ll be compatible with DX12 if you have a recent graphics card from Nvidia or AMD.
Defragment your hard drive before upgrading – defragging will optimize fragmented files and disk usage. You’ll be modifying a lot of files on your hard drive when performing the upgrade. For Windows 7, you can start
Disk Defragmenter. On Windows 8.1, if you right click your hard drive in My Computer and go into Properties, you’ll have the option to run Disk Defragmenter as well.
You’ll also want to run “Disk Cleanup” and “Clean System Files,” which will remove all the crud that’s been building up in your computer and free up some space.
Security and Anti Virus/Malware
Windows 10 will come with its own anti-malware software, Windows Defender (originally Security Essentials). If you want to use your own, make sure to check for updates and other maintenance before starting the upgrade to make sure they’ll work in Windows 10.
Those are just a few overall changes to Windows 10 as an operating system from previous iterations. Go upgrade now!