Microsoft's Windows 10 launches today: Here’s a checklist to follow before you upgrade

Given that it's the first time Microsoft is making a major release a free upgrade, it's quite interesting! There's a catch though. All genuine users of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 are eligible for the free upgrade to Windows 10 for up to a year.

Microsoft is revamping Windows. It's newest flavour of the Windows operating system launches today. 29 July is marked on many calendars across the globe. Given that it's the first time Microsoft is making a major release a free upgrade, it's quite interesting! There's a catch though. All genuine users of Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 are eligible for the free upgrade for up to a year.

Eligibility check

According to Microsoft, the Windows 10 operating system will be available as a free upgrade for qualified devices running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Yes, for free!

(Also read: All you need to know about Continuum in Windows 10)

You may be desperate to claim something that is available for 'free' on the first day itself. And you need to decide whether or not you want to. The launch day is tomorrow. But you might just want to wait it out.

Before you decide to upgrade it’s important to understand the real deal behind Windows 10.

Check your system specifications

If you decide to not wait it out and opt-in for the upgrade, you will need to ensure that you run the latest update of the operating system. If you run Windows 7, then you should have installed SP1. If you haven’t, you can download it here. Similarly, if you are on Windows 8, then the Windows 8.1 update is a must to be eligible for the upgrade to Windows 10.

The minimum hardware specifications to run Windows 10 are as follows:
Processor: 1 Gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor or SoC
RAM: 1 Gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit
Hard disk space: 16 GB for 32-bit OS or 20 GB for 64-bit OS
Graphics card: DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
Display: 1024x600

Points worth pondering over

Several users are complaining about device drivers not functioning properly. Given that Windows 10 is a completely new product, there would be instances of compatibility errors with your existing software suites. If any of these are commercial licences such as the Adobe Creative Suite, Tally, CAD or any specialised software suite which you are heavily dependent on for work, you might want to wait it out before you upgrade.

Also, users with Nvidia graphic cards have shared updates about how devices drivers seem to be buggy with Windows 10. It's advisable to wait it out before the usual bugs are ironed out in updates.

How do you upgrade?

Assuming you have weighed all factors that need to be considered, and have decided to upgrade to Windows, all you need to do is install the Get Windows 10 app.

Get Windows 10

You could click on the Windows icon on the Windows icon on the system tray (at the right end of the taskbar).

Reserve Windows 10 window

Once you click on the same, you can Reserve your free upgrade!

Windows 10 reserve confirmation

What if you don't upgrade?

You can still buy Windows 10. Windows 10 Home edition will cost you $119 (Rs 7,000 approximately). In comparison, Windows 10 Pro edition will cost you $199 (Rs 12,000 approximately). If you prefer upgrading from the Home edition to the Pro edition, you can opt for a Windows 10 Pro Pack at $99 (Rs 6,000 approximately).

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