Byte Me Article 225 – Countdown to Windows 10 release

Countdown to Windows 10 Release

Windows 10 will be released in less than 2 months on the 29th July – what will it do you?  Many readers have written in to ask the how’s and why’s associated with this new operating system so in this Byte Me issue we look closer into this next information technology milestone.

Nothing in IT stands still for long, and if it does it quickly becomes ineffective or not compatible.  This certainly holds true for operating systems.  Microsoft has repeatedly ‘hit the nail on the head’ with the release of many great operating systems such as Windows XP and Windows 7.  This again looks to be the case with Windows 10.

Windows 8 & 8.1 never received the universal acceptance of XP & 7 as Microsoft saw fit to dramatically change the way it looked and drove.  Windows 8 was never ‘bad’ and we actively promoted and sold it in droves to our customers – however in around 90% of cases we bundled it with a ‘skin’ that made it look, feel and drive exactly the same as Windows XP or Windows 7.

2015-06-13 Byte Me Artilce 225 - Windows 10 Main Points

This gave our customers the best of both worlds including all of the extra speed, stability, security and convenience features of Windows 8.  Now Microsoft is skipping the Windows 9 name/number and releasing Windows 10 with a similar look/feel to our ‘skinned Windows 8 installations’ – but with extra features yet again.

For most Windows 7 & Windows 8 / 8.1 users there will be a new white “Get Windows 10” icon on the bottom right of their screens.  This icon simply allows them to reserve a free upgrade copy of Windows 10 against their email address for when it becomes available.  This allows Microsoft to download the Windows 10 installation files over a period of time so they are already in the background in preparation to the upgrade.

This free upgrade will only be available for 12 months from the 29th of July and is only for existing Windows 7 /8 /8.1 users.  If you have an older operating system such as XP or Vista there is no free lunch and your PC’s are another step closer to the dinosaur age (sorry , but its true)!  There is also little point in trying to run ANY modern operating system on hardware that is over 6 years old – so a new PC is the only viable alternative here.

Our own trials of the upgrade process show a reasonably seamless transition for most Windows 8 / 8.1 users, however current Windows 7 may strike some compatibility issues.  Also if you are running specialised software such as accounting software, family tree software, machine control software, CAD software, sewing machine software, machine interface software (cattle scales etc.), machine diagnostic software or even have a business network then you need to approach the upgrade with extreme caution.

Some of our customers – even those with a standard PC will be interested in getting us to complete this upgrade for them and in many cases we should be able to do this for as little as $60.  For these simple upgrades all existing software and data will remain perfectly intact.  However again it must be stressed that we will no doubt see a few catastrophes where people have tried to do this upgrade themselves on a non-standard Windows installation.

Once you are running a PC with Windows 10, Microsoft has promised that it will then keep your operating system up-to-date with both security features and convenience features for the entire life of the machine – a very bold but enticing promise!  Microsoft also expects to have Windows 10 running on around a billion devices within the next 3 years.

To hear about some of the exact benefits and features of the new Windows 10 please look for next weeks’ edition of this article. 

Until then, future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 49 222 400.

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