Microsoft has announced the availability of Windows 10 for existing Windows 7 and Windows 8 computers starting July 29th 2015. The upgrade will be provided as a download through Windows Update. Options for downloading as a .ISO media will also be available. Windows 10 is quite large though and for persons such as myself who reside in rural locations, obtaining the software will be quite difficult. Windows 10 is a 3.5 GB download, most metered connections do not support downloading such a large program. So what are you supposed to do if you want to take advantage of the free upgrade? We look at the options available.
Important Notice for persons requesting backup media:
Microsoft says: "We’ll have options available for users who can’t download through Windows Update." These options have yet to be announced.
If you recieved the notification to reserve the Windows 10 upgrade, you will notice the following disclaimer in the app.
Yes, free. This limited time upgrade offer is for a full version of Windows 10, not a trial. 3GB download required, internet services frees may apply.
Even if you are able to download on a metered connection, overage charges can be significant cost. If you have the option of doing this, make sure you monitor your connection by ensuring it is set to Metered.
Understanding overage charges and data allotment:
If you are on a metered connection or monthly data plan, because of the size of the download which is about 2.7 to 3.5 GBs, you might incurr additional data charges if you go over your limit.
- For instance, suppose your data allotment per month is 2 GBs from your Internet Service Provider.
- The Windows 10 download is 3 GBs.
- You download Windows 10 on your 2 GB plan, if you go over the 2 GB allotment, the ISP might charge you for the extra MBs used, which is 1 GB.
The ISP might charge extra premium for the additional data you used. For instance, my ISP charges 25 cents per MB for every MB outside of my data alotment of 1 GBs. This means I have to carefully manage my data and ensure it does not go over 1 GB or I will be charged for it.
So what are some of the options you have for downloading Windows 10 affordably?
Do I have the option of delaying the download?
You can configure Windows Update the day before July 29th 2015 to check for updates but let you decide when to install them to avoid having the upgrade download automatically.
If you set your Internet connected as metered, Windows Update will not download the upgrade.
In Windows 8/8.1, click the View Available Network icon in the system tray, then right click your Internet Connection and select the option to Set as metered connection.
Once this is enabled, then Windows Update will download the Upgrade on such a connection.
For Windows 7 users:
If you don't want updates to be installed automatically, you can choose to be notified when updates apply to your computer instead. Then, you can download and install them yourself, or you can set Windows to automatically download updates, and then notify you so you can install them yourself. Here's how to change how Windows installs or notifies you about updates:
Open Windows Update by clicking the Start button . In the search box, type Update, and then, in the list of results, click Windows Update.
In the left pane, click Change settings.
Under Important updates, select the following:
Install updates automatically (recommended)
Download updates but let me choose whether to install them
Check for updates but let me choose whether to download and install them
Never check for updates (not recommended)
To schedule your automatic updates, next to Install new updates, select the day and time you want updates to occur.
If you are located near a library, you can check if they have Internet services which are normally free. Time might be a factor since you are alloted a certain amount of time for such services. The download for Windows 10 can take anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes. So if possible, you could request this in advance. Speak with the Librarian or Network Administrator. They might have restrictions on what type of content can be downloaded. Also choose an appropriate time to go and perform the download. If its after school hours, students might be using the Library computers to complete home work and other school projects. So don't do this during busy hours since this can slow the download or you might reduce network speeds.
If you have a good friend with a fast Internet connection, you could ask them if it would be possible for you to download the software on their computer or using your computer. This is especially great if they have Wi-Fi setup, they could let you connect to their network and download it for you.
This option incurrs a charge, so be prepared. Check your local Internet Cafe in town to find out about their rates per hour. Some Internet cafes will charge extra or less if you use your personal system to perform the download. This is how I perform my large downloads when I need to. Considering this will be a free upgrade, the small fee shouldn't be considered too much as a loss. A local Internet Cafe in my town charges US 1.30 cents per hour when I use my computer.
Electronics Store or PC Services Company
Some computer shops offer upgrade services. This might be the most expensive option, since Internet Services might be charged as a premium in addition to manual labour services.
Tips: Create backup media for future needs.
Microsoft recently noted the following options available:
With Windows 10, you can create your own recovery media and back up the pristine state of the operating system and preinstalled software. If things go wrong and you are unable to refresh or reset your device successfully, you can boot the device using recovery media and reset to the prior pristine state.
Also, you can retrieve the .ESD file from the root of the drive in the C:\Recovery Image folder and create your own bootable copy which you can use for reinstallation purposes.
Download ESD Decrypter 4.7 (esd-decrypter-wimlib-4.7z)
(use 7zip to extract the compressed file)
You can use NTLite as an alternative to convert the .ESD file into a .ISO:
Extract esd-decrypter-wimlib-4.7z to a folder.
Put the appropriate .ESD file you downloaded into that same folder.
Right click decrypt file in the same folder and click Run as administrator
Select option 1
When complete, burn to a blank DVD or create a bootable copy on a USB thumbdrive.
See article for instructions how to do that.
Preparing the .ISO file for installation.
See instructions for burning .ISO files in Windows 7 or later:
You can also use the Microsoft USB/DVD Tool, which is recommended for Windows XP users.
After obtaining the .iso file you use the Microsoft .iso to USB/DVD tool to create a bootable DVD or USB (requires a blank DVD or USB flash stick of at least 4 GB).
For UEFI based systems
If your computer is UEFI based, these are normally systems that come pre-loaded with Windows 8 or later, you will need to prepare the ISO file for such a configuration or you will receive an error message during setup. The thumbdrive needs to be formatted as FAT32 and use the GPT partitioning scheme. To do this, you need to use Rufus, a small tool you can download for free.
Rufus - credit: Pete Batard/Akeo
After you have installed Rufus:
- Launch it
- Select ISO Image
- Point to the Windows 10 ISO file
- Check off Create a bootable disk using
- Select GPT partitioning for EUFI firmware as the Partition scheme
- Choose FAT32 NOT NTFS as the File system
- Make sure your USB thumbdrive in the Device list box
- Click Start
- Close when complete