Byte Me Article 274 – Forced Windows 10 Upgrade

Forced Windows 10 Upgrades

Today’s article is centred around the latest Windows 10 upgrade messages that are appearing at the bottom of users’ Windows 7 & Windows 8 screens.  If you are a regular reader you will know that we embrace Windows 10 on any new computer, however we have always said that upgrading to Windows 10 from a previous version can be tricky if not done professionally.  Today we are seeing Microsoft ‘trick’ people into this upgrade which we think is scandalous.

Windows 10 has now been in the marketplace for 10 months and has proved to be Microsoft’s best operating system yet.  It is fast, reliable, secure and it offers a host of useful features that are not available in previous versions.  We started installing Windows 10 on all new computers from the day it was released and have not had a single customer ask us to downgrade ANY of these installations to a previous version.  They have all been very happy with the way Windows 10 is performing.

The other side to Windows 10 is that of upgrading to it from a previous version of Windows.  If the end result here was exactly the same as getting Windows 10 on a new PC then all would be good.  However, this is often not the case as many are finding out.  We see many customers and hear all of the rumours about failed or botched upgrades to Windows 10 – and there are many.  This is not surprising when you look at the facts.


Windows 7 still has a huge customer base with 47% of the entire worldwide computer share and this includes all Apple computers.  All of these Windows 7 computers have been getting a “Free Upgrade to Windows 10” message popping up on the screen for many months now.  Why?  Because Microsoft knows that so many are happy with Windows 7 and they also know that if left unprovoked the majority of these users will stay with Windows 7 for another 3 to 5 years – until their current PC dies a natural death.

The time frame here is not good for Microsoft as they will need to keep offering support in the form of updates and patches to all of these users – and so far they have promised to do this until January 2020.  This not only costs money but it can also hinder development of future software such as upgrades to their web browsers.  It is hard to develop new software technologies while keeping compatibility with previous operating systems.  So Microsoft will want as many of these customers as possible to upgrade to Windows 10.

In most of its marketing Microsoft is spot on.  There was a good reason why they have offered the upgrade to 10 from Windows 7 & 8 for free for the first 12 months (ending on 29th July this year).  It creates an ‘exclusive’ air about the upgrade and tells people to hurry up or they will miss out.  We have now professionally completed 1000’s of these upgrades and have in some instances had to do lots of tweaking and fixing before all was good.  Sure this is no longer free for the customer however it is still free from any licensing costs.

This will all end on the 29th of July and licensing upgrade fees will then apply however Microsoft is desperate to get people to opt into this upgrade.  It has been slowly changing the pop up message to make it harder and harder for people to not accept the upgrade.  Now it has changed the popup message again so that it literally tricks the end user into the upgrade.  Yes – we now get dozens of phone calls each day from customers that didn’t want to upgrade but ‘mystically’ their PC is doing the upgrade anyway.

What is happening here is that for the last 6 months you had to ‘hit the red X’ in the right hand top corner of the popup to cancel the upgrade (and you would have done this at least 20 times). Now if you hit the same X you are in fact accepting the upgrade – scandalous – yes – absolutely underhand in fact!

Now you have to look for a tiny link in the popup message that says “Click here to change upgrade schedule or cancel scheduled upgrade” – which most people are not looking for.  Also if you leave your PC turned on and unattended then the upgrade can actually start by itself – without you clicking on anything.  This is truly shocking!  Microsoft has really stuffed up here and is acting like a global dictator.  It has a great operating system in Windows 10 however it should let people fairly decide whether they want it or not.

We are still recommending that the upgrade be professionally done as the end results will be pleasing and will help keep the computer in question healthy and up-to-date but we do not agree with this current turn of events. 

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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