Discussion

Reinstalling Windows 10 after upgrade

We understand that you may have some questions regarding what to do if you have to reinstall Windows 10 at some point after you take advantage of the free upgrade.  Here are some basic questions and answers regarding the free upgrade offer:

Q: After doing a free upgrade to Windows 10, how do I clean install Windows 10 subsequently?

A: Once your device upgrades to Windows 10 using the free upgrade offer and activates online automatically, you will be able to clean install (i.e. boot from media and install Windows 10) the same edition of Windows 10 that you upgraded to on the same device during and after the free upgrade offer. You will not be required to purchase Windows 10 or go back to your prior down-level version of Windows. 

Windows 10 FAQ covers which edition of Windows you'll get upgraded to depending on the edition of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 that you start from (Refer to the question "What edition of Windows will I get as part of this free upgrade?"). More information on Windows 10 editions was published last month.

To enable clean installation of Windows 10 on devices that upgraded and activated online using the free upgrade offer

  1. You will be able to download and create installation media on a USB drive or DVD for the appropriate Windows 10 Edition 
  2. You will be able to skip entering the product key during Windows 10 Setup. Windows 10 will activate online automatically on such devices. The skip option is only available when booting from media and launching setup

The automatic online activation will occur seamlessly after clean installing Windows 10 if the device had previously upgraded and activated online the same Edition of Windows 10. No product keys are required.

 

Q: What happens if I change the hardware configuration of my Windows 10 device?

A: If the hardware configuration of your Windows 10 device changes significantly (e.g. motherboard change) Windows may require re-activation on the device. This is the same experience as prior versions of Windows (e.g. Windows 7 and Windows 8.1).   The free upgrade offer will not apply to activation of Windows 10 in such scenarios where hardware changes reset Activation.



* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

Thanks for further confirmation and clarification Uttam Yadav

Could you confirm the licensing status of Windows 10 when you upgrade from a retail or OEM version of Windows 7 or Windows 8/8.1? What are the transfer rights if you upgrade from a retail version of Windows and want to move the Windows 10 license to another machine a year or 2 years later?

Best,
Andre
Windows Insider MVP
MVP-Windows and Devices for IT
twitter/adacosta
groovypost.com

Wow!  Thanks Uttam!

No product key required for a clean install!  How is that possible?  Has the "Windows Activation Technology" been modified?

Obviously there is some new mechanism for generating Installation IDs.  Will the Installation ID change after each new clean install!

Fascinating information, thanks.

So... if some hardware change is made and you need to do a clean install... like perhaps a new hard drive... obviously the Installation ID would change... then that would require a phone call to Microsoft?

This idea of not using Windows product keys is interesting.


Different Blogs have said different things about what happens after July 29, 2016 as far as a possible subscription service to keep Windows 10 running correctly or at all. I have been in the Computer Repair Business for 27 yrs and I haven't seen Microsoft give away anything. After all Windows operating systems are the life blood as far as income for Microsoft is concerned and if you give away 1 Billion systems even at a paltry $100.00 per copy that's $100 Billion Microsoft loses. What assurances can I give my customers that if they upgrade their won't be the other shoe dropping after July 29th, 2016.

Also if someone Upgrades? to Windows 10 from Win 7 and doesn't like Windows 10. Can they reinstall Win 7 and will Microsoft Activate it for free?

Dennis Edelbrock

Computer Guy


Also if someone Upgrades? to Windows 10 from Win 7 and doesn't like Windows 10. Can they reinstall Win 7 and will Microsoft Activate it for free?

Presumably you'll be able to demonstrate 10 to your clients so they'll be able to decide whether to upgrade or not?  I think the Recovery option "Return to previous Windows" has been removed from current preview build.  I'm sure if you wanted to go back to 7 you could - but you'd have to talk to MS...


Different Blogs have said different things about what happens after July 29, 2016 as far as a possible subscription service to keep Windows 10 running correctly or at all. I have been in the Computer Repair Business for 27 yrs and I haven't seen Microsoft give away anything. After all Windows operating systems are the life blood as far as income for Microsoft is concerned and if you give away 1 Billion systems even at a paltry $100.00 per copy that's $100 Billion Microsoft loses. What assurances can I give my customers that if they upgrade their won't be the other shoe dropping after July 29th, 2016.

Also if someone Upgrades? to Windows 10 from Win 7 and doesn't like Windows 10. Can they reinstall Win 7 and will Microsoft Activate it for free?

Dennis Edelbrock

Computer Guy

The free upgrade offer to Windows 10 gives you full Windows 10 for the lifetime of the device - you will not be required to purchase Windows 10 to continue using full Windows 10 after the free upgrade offer has expired. Please see the question answered in detail at Free upgrade to Windows 10    

Sidd

It is always a good idea to run the Windows 10 Insider Preview and examine all the options

before making assumptions or surmising what may be added or removed from the final release of Windows 10.

All the Previews have the option to 'Go back' to the operating system that you upgraded

to Windows 10 Preview - including the latest B10130. The one difference with this build being

that the 'going back' is now provided in the Action Center's Recovery options.

I have tested the 'Roll Back' on ALL the Technical Previews as well as the new Insider Preview

and it did it successfully each time on at least 3 PC's and a laptop running Windows 8.1.

It took about 15 minutes. These tests were also run again after all the updates for each build were installed.

Some upgrades were done with the DATA preserved and without carrying the applications across.

A few upgrade tests were also done without keeping any applications or data.

If your Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1 receives all it's updates, it should get one that puts the extra windows icon in the Task Tray next to the clock in an eligible and compatible system.

ALL the relative information regarding upgrading and 'Reserving' an upgrade, is available

in the menus displayed by LEFT clicking and RIGHT clicking on that icon.

It also includes the rules regarding upgrading and Rolling Back.

Keep in mind that the option to 'Roll Back' must be done within the month after upgrading.


...The free upgrade offer will not apply to activation of Windows 10 in such scenarios where hardware changes reset Activation.

Translation, please?

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

Q: What happens if I change the hardware configuration of my Windows 10 device?

A: If the hardware configuration of your Windows 10 device changes significantly (e.g. motherboard change) Windows may require re-activation on the device. This is the same experience as prior versions of Windows (e.g. Windows 7 and Windows 8.1).   The free upgrade offer will not apply to activation of Windows 10 in such scenarios where hardware changes reset Activation.

so if users upgrade from win7/8.1 retail to win10 free upgrade, will the license still be retail or not ? can it be transferrable still and how will that work?

i only want to know this, and a lot of other people would like to know


Q: What happens if I change the hardware configuration of my Windows 10 device?

A: If the hardware configuration of your Windows 10 device changes significantly (e.g. motherboard change) Windows may require re-activation on the device. This is the same experience as prior versions of Windows (e.g. Windows 7 and Windows 8.1).   The free upgrade offer will not apply to activation of Windows 10 in such scenarios where hardware changes reset Activation.

so if users upgrade from win7/8.1 retail to win10 free upgrade, will the license still be retail or not ? can it be transferrable still and how will that work?

i only want to know this, and a lot of other people would like to know

I agree, this is of great concern. There are those of us who regularly change items like motherboards in PC's and use Retail versions to activate. Just saying it covers the 'life of the device' needs clarification. If I change the handle on my broom, then the brush wears out and I change that, is it still the same broom?


Different Blogs have said different things about what happens after July 29, 2016 as far as a possible subscription service to keep Windows 10 running correctly or at all. I have been in the Computer Repair Business for 27 yrs and I haven't seen Microsoft give away anything. After all Windows operating systems are the life blood as far as income for Microsoft is concerned and if you give away 1 Billion systems even at a paltry $100.00 per copy that's $100 Billion Microsoft loses. What assurances can I give my customers that if they upgrade their won't be the other shoe dropping after July 29th, 2016.

Also if someone Upgrades? to Windows 10 from Win 7 and doesn't like Windows 10. Can they reinstall Win 7 and will Microsoft Activate it for free?

Dennis Edelbrock

Computer Guy

The free upgrade offer to Windows 10 gives you full Windows 10 for the lifetime of the device - you will not be required to purchase Windows 10 to continue using full Windows 10 after the free upgrade offer has expired. Please see the question answered in detail at Free upgrade to Windows 10    

I was wondering where the hook was...

I have a 4 month old HP Laptop running Win 8.1.

So I upgrade to Win 10 4 months down the road my MB blows I have to send it back into HP to be replaced.

They send it back with 8.1.

I no longer have the right to use my Free Upgrade just because my MB blew has been replaced by HP.

It's the same device same situation as someone who built their own.

They get to continue to use theirs! But I can no longer use mine?????

Seems like another shiv from MS, to the people who have a legit copy of their OS.

Makes me wonder if I shouldn't cancel my reserved copy.

And stay with what I have.... At least it works!!!!


* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

 
Discussion Info

Views: 680,958 Last updated: July 14, 2018 Applies to: