Wiki Article
Applies to 316668 views

How to reserve your free upgrade to Windows 10

Technical Level : Basic

Summary

Microsoft will release Windows 10 its next generation operating system PC's, Tablets and Mobile devices this July 29th 2015. Windows 10 will be free for the first year to all Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Phone 8.1 users. In this article, we take a look at how Windows 10 will be distributed and how you can reserve your copy today.

Details

Windows 10 will be free for the first year to all Windows 7, Windows 8.1 and Phone 8.1 users.

Wow, thats cool, but does that mean, I will have to pay for Windows 10 after the first year?

No. Its a promotion to get as many users to upgrade their existing Windows 7 PCs and Windows 8.1 devices to Windows 10. Once you upgrade, its yours forever at no additional cost. As Microsoft Program Manager for Windows Terry Myerson described it:

This is more than a one-time upgrade: once a Windows device is upgraded to Windows 10, we will continue to keep it current for the supported lifetime of the device at no additional charge.

Source: http://blogs.windows.com/bloggingwindows/2015/01/21/the-next-generation-of-windows-windows-10/

The first thing you will need to ensure is you have the latest Windows Updates installed.

Windows 7 users should ensure they have Service Pack 1 or later installed.

Windows 8 users should ensure they have Windows 8.1 with Update 1 installed or later.

For Windows 8.1, see the following article:

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/install-latest-update-windows-8-1

For Windows 7, see the following article:

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/learn-how-to-install-windows-7-service-pack-1-sp1

Backup your computer:
When making significant changes to your computer such as updating the operating system, you should always backup. See links to resources about backing up by clicking the link for the respective version of Windows you are running: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1

Also review:

How to manually backup and restore your files

How to: 10 Tips before installing the latest Windows 10 build

How to: 10 things to do if Windows 10 Setup fails.

How to: Determine if an application or hardware device is compatible with Windows 10

Once you have installed these important updates and followed the prerequisite instructions, you should be ready to receive your free update to Windows 10 this summer.

How will I know when Windows 10 is available?
Between now and launch, the following KB update (https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3035583)  should be installed on your Windows 7/8.1 computer. Volume License customers will not receive this update because of IT requirements in managed environments. If its not already installed, open Windows Update and check for Updates.

To check if the updates already installed:

Click Start (or press Windows key + S for Windows 8.1 users)

Type: view installed updates

Hit Enter on your keyboard

Look through the list for the KB3035583 update.

Once that is installed, you should see the following pop up in the Notification area of the Taskbar.

Double click the Windows icon to learn more.

The Get Windows 10 app will provide with a tutorial of how the reservation works. Click the Reserve your free upgrade.

  • Reserve FREE upgrade to Windows 10 now. It will download* once available, and you can cancel your reservation at any time.
  • You'll get a notification after Windows 10 is downloaded to your device. Install it right away or pick a time that's good for you.
  • After it's installed, Windows 10 is all yours.

Learn more: How to install the latest Windows 10 build from within Windows 8.1 or Windows 7

You can go through the slideshow to learn more about the new features offered in Windows 10:

Windows 10 reintroduces the Start menu, with improved support for mouse, keyboard and touch.

Windows 10 includes improved performance, better productivity tools, better software and hardware compatibility.

Cortana, a new feature in WIndows 10 makes it easy to find files on your PC, Network and information on the web. The digital assistant can help you track a package, check flight information, find the name of a song or find out movie times. You can even ask Cortana questions.

Windows 10 includes a much improved Store where you can find not only apps and games, but also media such as Music, Movies and TV shows.

 

When you are ready, just click the Reserve your free upgrade and Windows 10 will be yours this summer.

What are the official upgrade paths to Windows 10?

Microsoft revealed in a Channel 9 Video the official upgrade paths to Windows 10:

Windows XP and Windows Vista users will have to do a clean install from a .ISO, so will Windows 8.0 users.

Source: http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/WinHEC/2015/OWD100

  • Users of older versions of Windows such as Windows XP and Windows Vista will have to purchase a full retail upgrade and perform a custom install.
  • Windows 8.0 customers will have to download the Windows 10 .ISO file and perform a local in place upgrade. How to: upgrade from previous versions of Windows using Windows 10 ISO file
  • The edition of Windows 10 installed will be based on the logical edition of Windows installed, ie. Windows 8 Core (Single Language) will be upgraded to Windows 10 Home, Windows 7 Professional will be upgraded to Windows 10 Pro.
  • The free upgrade does not have the option to switch architectures, so the architecture will remain the same. If you want to switch architectures, you will have to download the Window 10 .ISO file in the appropriate architecture (32 or 64 bit) and do a custom install.

How to: Switch from 32 bit versions of Windows to Windows 10 64 bit

How to: Do a custom installation of Windows

  • Volume License customers running Windows 7 Enterprise or Windows 8/8.1 Enterprise or volume license editions of Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8/8.1 Pro do not qualify for this offer.

Will I be able to upgrade from the Windows 10 Insider Preview to the final release?

How to upgrade from the Windows 10 Insider Preview to Windows 10 RTM build

Can I do a clean install using the Free upgrade?

No, it will require that you are running a previous qualifying version and start the upgrade from within the qualifying version. You can initiate a clean install after completing the Upgrade.

Please be aware that you cannot use the free upgrade offer to perform a clean install on first attempt. You must first upgrade from the qualifying version of Windows 7 or Windows 8/8.1 (whether you do it through Windows Update or using the .ISO file). Ensure the upgrade is completed successfully and then ensure that it is activated. You can then proceed to do a clean install by using recovery media or using the Reset function in Start > Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Reset this PC (Get Started).

See: 

How to: Perform a clean install using Reset this PC in Windows 10

How to: Create a Recovery Drive for reinstalling Windows 10

Can I choose a different language during the upgrade?

Cross language upgrades are not supported, the free upgrade will be installed in your local language. In fact, you should uninstall any language packs before upgrading.

For example, if the default language your copy of Windows 7 Ultimate was installed in is French and you added a English Language Pack; you will need install a language pack for English after setup is complete if you are upgraded to Windows 10 Pro. If you have Windows 10 Home installed you will need to install the Windows 10 Pro Pack ($99) using Add Features (Windows key + X > Control Panel) then download the English Language Pack.

Which languages will Windows 10 be available in?

Arabic (Saudi Arabia), Bulgarian (Bulgaria), Chinese (Simplified, China), Chinese (Hong Kong), Chinese (Traditional, Taiwan), Croatian (Croatia), Czech (Czech Republic), Danish (Denmark), Dutch (Netherlands), English (United Kingdom), English (United States), Estonian (Estonia), Finnish (Finland), French (France), French (Canada), German (Germany), Greek (Greece), Hebrew (Israel), Hungarian (Hungary), Italian (Italy), Japanese (Japan), Korean (Korea), Latvian (Latvia), Lithuanian (Lithuania), Norwegian, Bokmål (Norway), Polish (Poland), Portuguese (Brazil), Portuguese (Portugal), Romanian (Romania), Russian (Russia), Serbian (Latin, Serbia), Slovak (Slovakia), Slovenian (Slovenia), Spanish (Spain, International Sort), Spanish (Mexico), Swedish (Sweden), Thai (Thailand), Turkish (Turkey), Ukrainian (Ukraine)

Additional languages available as Language Interface Packs

http://www.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/windows-10-specifications

I am on a slow connection, what options do I have?

How to: Upgrade to Windows 10 if you are on a slow or metered Internet connection?

Do unused Windows licenses qualify for the free upgrade to Windows 10?

No. In order to qualify for the free upgrade, Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 with Update 1 must be installed and running. Unused licenses do not qualify. 

Will I have the option of choose a different drive or partition where I want the upgrade installed?

No, it will require that you are running a previous qualifying version and start the upgrade from within the qualifying version.

I am dual booting with another edition of Windows, will upgrading affect the other installation?

No, it will not affect the other operating system, only the version of Windows from which the upgrade is initiated will be replaced.

Will upgrading to Windows 10 affect other drives or partitions in my computer?

No, only the drive where the upgrade is initiated from will be affected.

Can I switch to a different edition using the Reservation app?

The edition of Windows 10 installed will be based on the logical edition of Windows installed, ie. Windows 8 Core (Single Language) will be upgraded to Windows 10 Home, Windows 7 Professional will be upgraded to Windows 10 Pro.

Learn more: What are the editions of Windows 10 available?

If you want to switch from ie. Windows 7 Home to Windows 10 Pro, you will have to purchase a Pro Pack for $99 using the Add Features wizard in Control Panel. You won't have to install it from scratched, the Add Features wizard will unlock the edition.

I want to dual boot instead of replace my current version of Windows.

If you need to install Windows 10 on a separate hard disk or partition, you will need to purchase a full license.

Retail pricing information:

Edition Pricing
Windows 10 Home US $119
Windows 10 Pro US $199
Windows 10 Pro Pack US $99

Source: https://www.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/windows-10-faq

Do I have the option of delaying the download?

You can configure Windows Update to check for updates but let you decide when to install them to avoid having the upgrade download automatically.

Do I have the option of choosing when to install the Windows 10 upgrade?

  • Reserve your FREE upgrade to Windows 10 now. It will download* once available, and you can cancel your reservation at any time.
  • You'll get a notification after Windows 10 is downloaded to your device. Install it right away or pick a time that's good for you.
  • After it's installed, Windows 10 is all yours.
  • Learn more about how the update works: How to install the latest Windows 10 build from within Windows 8.1 or Windows 7

Troubleshooting

If the Reservation application (Windows 10 app) has a blank screen or does not work or is not available:

Please be aware even if you do not get the Windows 10 app, you can still download Windows 10 as a .ISO file, create a bootable copy and upgrade your system.

How to: upgrade from previous versions of Windows using Windows 10 ISO file

  1. Check Windows Update for an updated version of KB2952664 (Windows 7 SP1) or KB2976978 (Windows 8.x)
  2. After installing the Windows Update, re-run the Compatibility Appraiser. This will happen automatically within a day or it can be run manually from an admin command prompt:
    • schtasks.exe /Run /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\Application Experience\Microsoft Compatibility Appraiser"

Once started, it may take 10 minutes or so for the appraiser to complete. Once complete, re-open the Get Windows 10 app and it will have the updated compatibility information. Restart your computer and try again.  Dan Charlton - Windows DirectX Graphics team

If the above does not work, try uninstalling both updates:

Press Windows key + X (for Windows 7 click Start, type: cmd then right click cmd and click Run as administrator)

Click Command Prompt (Admin)

At the command prompt, enter the following commands:

wusa /uninstall /kb:3035583

wusa /uninstall /kb:2952664

 

Exit the command prompt, restart and run Windows Update again.

If the problem persist, see the following:

I want to reserve my free copy of Windows 10, but I don’t see the icon on the taskbar

Can I reserve even if I didn’t get a notification?

Yes. You can reserve your upgrade at any time on any compatible PC by clicking on the Get Windows 10 app or the Windows Update control panel.

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10-faq

This update is not required to get Windows 10, you can still get it even though you don't get the notification. Just download it on July 29th 2015 when it becomes available. You will have one year to do so. The Reserve app is just a reminder/notification for its availability.

How can I cancel my reservation? I don't want to upgrade to Windows 10 at all.

Open the Reservation app in the notification area (double click it)

Click the Hamburger menu in the upper left corner, then select View Confirmation. 

In the lower left, click Cancel reservation and then confirm (twice). 

Can I change the email address used to reserve the free upgrade?

You have to cancel the reservation and reserve Windows 10 again if you want it to use a different email address.

To cancel reservation follow the below steps:
Click/tap on the Get Windows 10 app icon on the taskbar notification area.
Click/tap on the "hamburger" style menu button at the top left corner in the Get Windows 10 app.
Click/tap on View confirmation under Getting the upgrade.
Click/tap on the Cancel reservation link.
Click/tap on Cancel reservation to confirm.
Click/tap on Close.

This will cancel the reservation, now go ahead and reserve it with the new email.

Can I uninstall the Reservation completely from my computer?

Click Start (or press Windows key + S for Windows 8.1 users)

Type: view installed updates

Hit Enter on your keyboard

Look through the list for the KB3035583 and KB2976978 update.

Right click each update and click Uninstall.

Other reasons why you might not be seeing it:

Why don’t I have the Get Windows 10 app?

If you don’t see the Get Windows 10  app on your PC, it might be because:

  1. Your device isn’t up-to-date with at least Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1 Update.
  2. Windows Update is turned off or is not set to received updates automatically.
  3. You’ve blocked or uninstalled the necessary Windows Update functionality.
  4. Your device is not running genuine Windows.
  5. Your computer is part of a Windows Domain
  6. Microsoft has not determined your device capable of running Windows 10 even though it meets the minimum system requirements.
  7. You are running a volume license client: Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Enterprise, Windows 8.1 Pro, Windows 8.1 Enterprise (only retail store bought or preinstalled OEM licenses) get the upgrade offer.

Running Windows Update and installing any available updates will fix the first three issues. Need more help? Go to our Windows Community Forum.

PCs that we determine cannot run Windows 10 will not see the Get Windows 10  app before July 29, 2015. After July 29, 2015, we’ll enable the icon in the system tray. This is to help ensure that you can easily check your PC’s compatibility if you choose.

If your device is managed as part of a school or business network, please check with your IT administrator about upgrading to Windows 10.

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10-faq

How can I check my status?

You can check your upgrade status by right clicking this icon:

Source: http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/preparing-for-windows-10/

Enter your email and click Send confirmation.

Also, you can open Windows Update and check there.

Resources:

What are the editions of Windows 10 available?

Frequently Asked Questions: Windows 10

What are the editions of Windows 10 available?

How to: Do a custom installation of Windows

How to: Do a clean install of Windows 10

How to: upgrade from previous versions of Windows using Windows 10 ISO file

Comments (20)

progress