Upgrade to Windows 10 for Free… Still

There are probably some of you out there that are still running Windows 7. Not sure why, but you still are nonetheless. Or, maybe someone you know (mostly older people) don’t feel they need to because Windows 7 works fine. Well, you will need to inform them that as of yesterday, Windows is no longer supporting that operating system.

Maybe they lagged and didn’t upgrade their OS before the July 29, 2016 cutoff. While you don’t see the banners or the prompts to get a free upgrade, you can still get one. It appears that Microsoft’s activation servers are still allowing free upgrades. Prior to that, you could only get a free upgrade if you went to their disability section, but they shut that down a year or so ago.

ZDNet’s Ed Bott has been testing this method for years, and the free upgrade still works. Now, there are two options for installing Windows 10: keep your files or a clean install. I know this, because I did a clean install last week on my desktop. As long as you back-up everything, it is better to do a clean install. The system runs cleaner and you won’t run into conflicting issues with certain programs or apps. By the way, this method, also, works for Windows 8.1 users, as well.

Here’s how to upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10:

  • Back up all of your important documents, apps, and data
  • Head over to Microsoft’s Windows 10 download site
  • In the Create Windows 10 installation media section, select “Download tool now,” and run the app
  • When prompted, choose “Upgrade this PC now.”
  • You’ll then be asked whether you want to keep your personal files or start fresh. Remember: starting fresh or keeping your files still means that all apps and settings will be deleted for the Windows 10 upgrade.
  • Once the upgrade is complete, you should receive a digital license for Windows 10, which can be found under Settings > Update & Security > Activation.

A clean install is always the best way. Not to mention it gets rid of a lot of bloatware that comes pre-installed on your system. In fact, when you purchase a new system, you can loosen up a lot of hard drive space if you do a clean install, unless you need some of their software. If you haven’t upgraded for whatever reason, you better remember this when you system gets infected by some malware that newer systems would’ve been protected from.