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Here are the specific upgrade paths to get to all versions of Windows 10

If you have a device with an older version of Windows or Windows Phone, Microsoft has now revealed more information on the specific upgrade paths that will available to get to Windows 10.

The company first revealed the seven Windows 10 SKUs last week, and a new blog post on the Windows Australia Partner Network has more details on the upgrade paths for Windows 7 and 8.1 users, along with Windows Phone 8.1:

  • Microsoft will offer a free upgrade to Windows 10 for qualified Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 devices in the first year. After the first year, upgrades will be paid via boxed product and VL Upgrades.
  • Windows 8/8.1 and Windows 7 Home Basic and Home Premium devices upgrade to Windows 10 Home
  • Windows 8/8.1 Pro and Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate devices upgrade to Windows 10 Pro
  • If upgraded within the first 12 months following launch, the device will receive ongoing Windows 10 updates for free for the life of that device
  • Excludes Windows Enterprise and RT devices
  • The free Windows 10 upgrade is delivered through Windows Update; domain-joined machines can manually get the update via Windows Update. The upgrade cannot be deployed through WSUS.

As previously announced, Microsoft's free upgrade to Windows 10 for Windows 7, 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 users will only last a year after the OS officially launches. Microsoft has yet to reveal pricing for the full version of Windows 10. Surface and Surface 2 owners with Windows RT are supposed to get an update that will add some features of Windows 10, but specifics about that update have not been revealed.

Source: Microsoft (opens in new tab); Via: WinSuperSite

250 Comments
  • So if we don't upgrade to Windows 10 from WP 8.1 within a year, we have to PAY?
  • For desktop? Yes. Phone? Good question
  • For desktop yes, for phone, obviously no. I don't know why everyone thinks that they need to complicate this process any more. It is the same as it has always been, just desktop users get the opportunity to upgrade for free. Stop trying to make a problem out of a place there isn't one.
  • So, I upgrade my boxed copy Win8 pro to Win10 pro and suddenly it only gets updates 'for the life of the device'? So my retail edition gets converted into an OEM edition tied to the box it is in? Woah, big deal! Time to read the small print VERY carefully. Things are being worded VERY cunningly in these statements, I notice. I wouldn't assume anything at this point. I think they plan to force everyone on to W10 and a fee after a year will be the stick following the carrot for all editions. Though I can upgrade my PC devices and simply re-image back to W8 until W10 is properly finished for touch devices, but for the phone it's much more of a pain to switch back and I cannot image the W10 install so switching back would not help. No activation code and no drive imaging for WP means no way to claim a copy and hold it in abeyance.
  • I'm not sure where you read this?  It says OEM devices and nothing there has changed.  I don't see anything about your boxed copy.
  • 4th bullet point down in the article, if you upgrade, updates are pegged to the 'life of the device' which is the deal for OEM copies of Windows. Retail W8 copies are not device dependent... until you 'upgrade' to W10 it seems. Fine print.
  • First bullet point specifically says devices. None of this necessarily applies to a retail copy. Assuming your retail copy does get to be upgraded to 10, it being tied to a device still a lot better than previously not having any free upgrades at all. Right?
  • i'm still not seeing this fine print you are imagining.   
  • You are not going to lose your boxed W8. You can install it on otheer machines, if you like. You may not get an update on other machines though.  
  • I noticed that right away reading the article.
  • Let's see. You bought a boxed copy of windows 7. Did you buy a copy of windows 10? No you didn't. They gave it to you for free. So, no you aren't converting your retail edition windows 7. You can still install it on any PC. We will need more detail about what happens if the device crashes. It sound like you should create a backup because you will need to buy a new windows 10 retail if your computer crashes and you need to reinstall. WP won't have any fee. It is even free for OEMs. How easy is it to revert IOS or android to a previous version? It's not easy and very few people would consider doing it. So, I don't understand you wp argument at all. If you are worried, hold off on the update until you feel more comfortable. You will be able to upgrade wp anytime.
  • so then you buy an OEM copy of win 10 when it releases and your all set. then it don't have to die with the device.
  • Yes, the phone has always been confusing. And the same question arises for office.
  • Whats so confusting about it. You'll get an OTA update, JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER PHONE IN THE WORLD.
  • Then why the hell they are saying it'll be free for one year for all windows 8/8.1 AND WINDOWS PHONE?
  • That means you have 1 year to upgrade on the PC for free. The phone upgrades will be free just like they have been. There's no way they could charge for a phone update because they would then risk being called out as losers
  • Because if they don't make sure to cut windows phone, you same dopes will think you have to pay for it on day one.
  • There was a previous anouncement that WP is free. First of all, users don't buy a wp license. OEM's buy it. Microsoft made wp free for OEMs. Therefore, there will never be a fee for WP. There will probably be a point where your phone get too old and won't be able to upgrade anymore and you will need to buy a new device. However, that is the case for all mobile OS.
  • What exactly is confusing about office? If you have office 365 then you get the new version free when it is available. If you bought a set version of office, then you have that version until you pay for the new one. As for phone... ya, MS marketing at it's best. No doubt it will be a free upgrade, provided the carrier will update your device, and if your provider does not upgrade you in a year, then chances are you are not going to get the upgrade at all. But it is not such a big deal for phones as they are 2 year old devices, and the ones that may not get the update (like my ATT 920) are at or past the 2 year mark anyways and it is time for an upgraded device. All of the devices made in the last year should get the upgrade path without issue.
  • MS probably thought people would realize that they never paid for a phone OS on any device and that obviously the updates would be free as well as long as your device is supported by the OS. There is no retail version of windows phone and there is no way for a user to get it outside of buying a device with the OS preinstalled on it. Obviously, they were wrong to assume that people are smart enough to realize this and need to spell it out for everyone in simple terms. Even, if your carrier doesn't provide it, you can still get it through the developer preview. The only thing you need the carrier for is to get the firmware updates.
  • Why we then own Lumia devices as we have to pay for windows 10 better move on to iPhone or android ..
  • I'm struggling to decipher your comment...
    However, if I read it correctly, you are suggesting moving to iOS/Android because, after 1 year of idling, you would feel aggrieved at having to pay for the upgrade?
    Pro tip - devote 1 hour in those 365 days to download the Windows 10 update! It won't cost you a penny...and you won't have to jump ship!
  • I'm not suggesting moving to a different phone OS. I'm questioning Microsoft's decision on this. Or probably it might a mistake on their part.
  • They want to get a billion Windows 10 users in the first year. They don't want the usual upgrade tail that extends all the way back to people staying with legacy OS's...
    Money talks - so if people think they will lose out, they will upgrade!
    Also, just remember that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with Windows 7 or 8.1. They will still be supported IF people choose not to upgrade. However, if Microsoft's app model is to succeed, they need to compel people to be a part of Windows 10.
    It's a good move....and certainly not one to be concerned about.
  • Well said sir!
  • Lol. You're questioning them giving you a major OS upgrade for free??? I'm sure they will take a donation if you feel the need to pay. Newsflash - they want everyone to upgrade and be on the same OS. Offering free for one year will go a long way to help.
  • But what after that 365 days .. What will be the next step to be taken . Its worth paying l1520 as we need to pay for its is after one year
  • You don't understand.  The offer to upgrade for free is for a year after the release of Windows 10.  If you take the offer within the first year you get to keep it for free even after the year.
  • Wait, what?  
  • This is not saying that you have to pay for Windows Phone/Mobile Upgrades for a Lumia 366 days from release.  I suspect they will allow all mobile devices to upgrade for free so long as the OS was Windows Phone and that the phone has the ability to do it.  
  • Phones don't pay for upgrades. Never have and never will. You are missreading the article. For WIndows 10 (non mobile), you have 1 year to upgrade for free. If you don't, you have to buy a retail copy. If you do, the OS will be supported for the life of the device. That would mean when the device dies and you decide to build a new computer, you will have to buy a retail copy. If you buy a new computer, it will have the latest version of the OS installed.
  • Not to mention that this is probably wrongly worded in the article since I cannot remember any company charging for phone OS updates
  • Yes, the article is poorly worded. The whole is related to regular windows. THen on the paragraph below, he included windows phone in the free upgrade for one year statement. Windows phone shouldn't be included. It has always been a free update.
  • No charge for windows 10 for phone, or windows mobile as they call it now. They dropped the fee for windows phone about a year ago. That was for oems. Users never had to pay for an update. The fee is related to windows for PCs and tablets running a standard version of windows.
  • I see people walking away from Windows Phone if it comes true.
  • There's nothing to get true. Phone OS updates are free. The only people supporing a 'Rumor" of a paid update, are retards that can't figure it out.
  • U can read it on 3rd para u will get all the details ..wheater it will be paid or free
  • It's happening. Another, even stupider, rummor is being born. This time it; "You'll have to pay for windows mobile OS after one year". Wow, just wow.  
  • Agent K said it best in Men in Black "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals, and you know it."
  • No!! We dont have to pay for Wp 8.1 after first year. That's only for the desktop version. Phone version will be free even if you upgrade three years later (although why wouldn't you?).
  • That I know dear till today we need not to pay for the mobile is but after windows 10phone after one year we need to pay it or u can roll back to Widows 8.1 back that's the only possible way
  • Where did you go to school? You have very little discernment, my friend.
  • "windows 10phone after one year we need to pay it or u can roll back to Widows 8.1 back that's the only possible way" why don't you see the january 21st event.
  • The windows central article is poorly written. The one year thing is only for windows for the desktop/tablets. Windows mobile will remain free.
  • Phones are always free... why would Microsoft charge for something they haven't since... who knows I remember getting updates on WM for free? even tablets with Windows "desktop" below 8" are free. so I am sure it's obvious Phone will be free as always. and Desktop will not be free after a year. end. I don't know why people overthink so much when we have gotten WinPho updates for free. and nothing should change that.
  • desktop will be free for lifetime if u upgrade to windows 10 with in a year.
  • Windows is free for devices 9 inches or smaller, so no. However, it's possible that they might pull support for some phones, particularly older ones, after a year, and the upgrade could be pulled. A year is plenty of time to upgrade anyway and many people will buy a new phone in that time period as well.
  • I wanna ask it too...
    About WP 8.1 to W10 pay within a year if we don't upgrade it.
  • Hi Ghet no Windows Phone OS Upgrades will always be free i.e. WP8.1 to W10 will be FREE always eaven after the first year just like the upgrade from W8 to W8.1 has alway been free.   if you have a device 9 inch and under Tablet or Phone the OS will always be free and free to upgrade ontill Microsoft stops supporting your device.
  • Not that I wouldn't upgrade, its just that in the random scenario of someone DECIDING to buy a WP8/8.1 device a year after launch of W10 and finding out he has to pay to go to W10, that this is intriguing. Although the chances of that happening are like 10 million to one :-)
  • Are we still going to get a WP8.1 device after one year from WP10 launch?  
  • Any supported devices will get a free upgrade. Supported devices currently are any devices that have windows phone 8.1 installed. I'm sure as we move forward, some older devices won't be able to get new updates. This happens with IOS and android. However, anyone buying a WP8.1 device after the release of windows 10, will be able to upgrde to windows 10. There is no fee for windows phone. Even OEM don't pay a license fee to use windows phone.
  • I read Windows 10 Home/Pro. They aren't talking about paying for Windows 10 Mobile
  • Yes you would have to pay because they are making it free to upgrade for the first year.....after that year they will charge for the os. They kinda did this with all other upgrades to the next, but it was usually at slashed pricing like $50-$120.....but with this one it will be free for everyone running windows 7/8/8.1 as long as they hit "upgrade now" within first year. Edit::: Soz.....for phone...it is free all the time. 8 device gets it free because it isn't desktop. Desktop is what is talked about for upgrade. Phone will be free for life of device/servers haha!
  • They are not going to charge for a phone update. I can't think of a time when there has EVER been a charge for a phone OS update. I wish people woould think before they post to the internet.
  • Apple did charge money for updating to some versions of iOS for some iPods touch.
  • Since when is an iPod touch a phone?
  • I've had an iPod touch since iOS 3. When did that happen?  
  • Yep. I was one of those people who paid to get the upgrades for the iPod Touch 2nd gen. While it is not a phone, I still agree that it is a semi-valid point. Not at all relevant, though, as Apple is not Microsoft.
  • Plz re-read the third last point in the article
  • That means if u pay it within 12 months it would be free for lifetime that is for the first 12 months it will cost u very less after I would be costly ..
  • Yes... we will have to buy a box with a DVD for W10 mobile and install on the phone.....     /s this is more an incentive for people to upgrade as soon as possible to W10 from W7/W8.1 because they have an option to continue on the old OSs.. for WP you phone will be asking to upgrade as soon as the upgrade is available..    
  • The real question is why wouldn't you upgrade? Also, if you didn't upgrade in the fist year, you're probably not going to anyway unless you get a new device.
  • What I'm confused about is this line:   If upgraded within the first 12 months following launch, the device will receive ongoing Windows 10 updates for free for the life of that device   If i upgrade within the first 12 months, my device gets ongoing updates for free.. So if, say, in a year and a half from now, my PC breaks and I have to go buy another computer.  Obviously I have to pay for the computer, but do I then need to pay for future Windows 10 updates?  Because that computer was not "upgraded" to windows 10 in the first year it was purchased later.     That is where I am confused here.  Will they be charging for updates to the OS?  Such as 10.1 (if that is what they'll call it)
  • If you buy a new new PC it will come with an OS included in the purchase price. That OS will be the current version of windows. Updates to that new copy of windows. I think MS will provide these updates free as well. Putting old upgraded computers in a better position than new hardware is not in MS's interest. If you choose to home brew a "new PC" (case, motherboard, power supply, CPU, etc.) the question is can legally use your old RETAIL version of windows and free upgrade to 10 on the new home brew PC. I don't know. For most people, a new PC comes with a new OS so this is a not an issue.  
  • I am going to assume it is just like the previous versions of Windows and how it deals with the upgrades:   Windows 7: To use upgrade software, you must first be licensed for the software that is eligible for the upgrade. Upon upgrade, this agreement takes the place of the agreement for the software you upgraded from. After you upgrade, you may no longer use the software you upgraded from and Windows 8: The software covered by this agreement is an upgrade to your existing operating system software, so the upgrade replaces the original software that you are upgrading. You do not retain any rights to the original software after you have upgraded and you may not continue to use it or transfer it in any way.  It is pretty much how they've always dealt with upgrade versions.
  • Somehow, I did not understand
  • I will probably buy a new laptop with touch
  • Love bullet number 4
  • Hell yes!!!
  • Why we windows 8.1 phone users need to buy after one year then why buy phone paying this much as we need to pay for the upgrade .. Better have other is devices like iPhone or android
  • I think the article said if you do not upgrade within one year after the launch of W10 you have to pay for it. So in other words do not delay in upgrading when it launches.
  • We don't have to pay for phone after one year. That's only for desktop.
  • Yeah you're right. You got it
  • Who told u dear read the first point carefully ...
  • Your problem is, you don't english well.  
  • THey have windows phone listed. However, there is no way that there will be a fee for windows phone. They eliminated they licensing fee a year ago. No one has ever paid for an update to a mobile device and there is no way microsoft will charge for it. Even it the first point is worded poorly, common sense should dictate that the fee after the first year refers to windows 10 and not Window Mobile 10.
  • You won't have to pay for the desktop Windows 10 after one year either, unless you're an enterprise.
  • Maybe Windows Central needs a multi lingual version to help with some of the misunderstanding...
  • Haha, yes :-)
  • Read it carefully. You do not have to pay for Windows phone updates. Just desktop version. I swear MS needs to put out an annoucement for idiots.
  • Thn u should clear the doubt over first point ..
  • Yep wouldn't make sense. Though they did play with the idea before releasing wp7 to offer pay to upgrade
  • Plz read the third last point in the article again
  • Good
  • Microsoft already have had a 'HOME' edition in Windows 10 build 10074
  • And if we have to reinstall our Windows 10 after this one year period?! I see what Microsoft did there. Then users will get used to it install their previous version and eventually pay for Windows 10. So free means nothing here its just like an Demo :) "here you can have it but pay after you reinstall it". Or will it be handled different?
  • In your case and probably mine, backup everything and make an image before and right after windows 10 installs
  • I don't think that will be the case. Mostly, they would give an upgrade key that will allow you to reinstall. It has always been like that.
  • I know with the $15 w8 pro they forced backup media purchase(not that I have a problem with that as copying the decrypted install wim was time consuming for 8.1) so hoping they will still offer the option to get backup install media from them
  • I would assume that you would receive a validation code just like you do everytime you install a new version of Windows. You should be able to write that code down and use it again if you need to reinstall it on the same computer.
  • Yes but i dont know how they will manage the licence later, i have one fro Win8.1 Pro and i will update to win10 for shure as i use it already, but i just ask what happens after an PC crash or soemthing else, i install my Win8.1 Pro and then i have understand it this way that we pay then for Win 10?!
  • I am sure there will be some kind of key or way for them to know you are reinstalling. And i did not see anyplace that said after one year you will pay for updates. It says after the first 12 months that (windows 10) is out if you did not upgrade during that time you will have to pay to do so
  • Windows 10 will undoubtedly get registered to your Microsoft Account. My Windows 8.1 is. I had to reinstall it and I was able to reuse the same key. Windows 10 will probably be the same way. I don't think they'd screw people over like that.
  • Now im happy to hear this because i dont know how this was handled as users also upgraded from 7 to 8.1. great. thanks.
  • its handle at the license key level... you license will be upgraded to Windows 10... not fee if you have to reinstall... unless you loose the license key...
  • The way it has always been. People are freaking out, but all they are saying is if you are an early adopter you get the reward of a free OS. Take the freebie and run with it, you will not have to pay later.
  • I doubt that very much. Licenses are tracked and your update would be logged as happening before one year. Or you could just be smart and image your drive and not have to worry about it.
  • i will have to backup my drive from now on. And i think even if it would be paid then it will not be much. there are always this good sales on each OS start :P
  • Your Microsoft account is the key I guess. When you upgrade to windows 10 and login your account then after reinstalling it and SIGNING IN your Microsoft account your windows 10 might get activated. I think it works this way
  • oh god, why
  • win 7 key will work on windows 10.
  • Free Updates for life? So if you don't take advantage of the free year to get free updates it'll cost you to get updates after the year?
  • That's exactly how I interpreted the article
  • Nope. After the first year you'll have to buy windows 10 just ONCE and then free updates for life (or until the device dies).
  • What!?
  • I wouldn't get my hopes that high! MS needs to make money for all the work that went into w10. I wouldn't be surprised if after one year of free upgrade MS decides to make the w10 on a subscription basis similar to Office 360!
  • Well that could explain the jettisoning of the much more affordable technet which unlike msdn was reasonable for hobbyists
  • It's the last version of Windows. They're switching to an OSX style release. People will continue to purchase devices with Windows, and that means they're still paying for Windows licenses.
  • FML. I cannot understand how people are so confused by this!
    --> Upgrade in the first year, and you get Windows 10 for free, along with all associated updates for the life of Windows 10.
    --> Stay with Windows 8.1, and you will get your free updates for the lifetime of that OS, but you will forgo the chance to get W10 for free.
    If you choose not to upgrade, then of course you will have to pay for a Windows 10 licence and the associated ongoing updates that it includes.
  • "the device will receive ongoing Windows 10 updates for free for the life of that device" How hard is that to understand?
  • Probably good once you install it once and it is encoded to your windows key. Just like the upgrade from windows 8 to windows 8.1.
  • Ok!!
  • Would it stop pirated WINDOWS USERS?
  • Yes. Sorry about that. Looks like you'll have to buy an actual licence ;)!
  • Not at all! I use genuine OS whether it is Windows or Linux. :) The reason behind my question is about piracy in India, every computer shops usually use pirated version of Windows there until User asked about Genuine Windows...
  • Non-genuine Windows users will be able to upgrade to Windows 10, but they'll still be non-genuine.
  • No, it won't stop them. Microsoft realizes that people won't pay for it, but they also know that a lot of people need support, and they know that a lot of people buy second-hand Windows machines without a license.
  • My question is how do I prevent users on my domain from installing this if it is delivered through Windows Update?
  • Because you need admin privileges to install so it wont effect your domain
  • Systems on a domain will not get the free upgrade.
  • What about if I need to reinstall after 1 year?
  • The Windows licence key will be updated from 8.1 to 10, as always happens when you upgrade Windows licence keys. So when you reinstall, it'll consider you to be the owner of a Windows 10 licence, even if it was a Windows 7 one to begin with.
  • Who cares? I'm buying a new PC preloaded with 10 when it comes out.
  • Money bags
  • I'm not rich, it's just that my current PC is starting to age..
  • and you're overpaying for a PC loaded with crap you don't need. Congrats
  • I ain't a dumb ass, trust me. I know what I buy.
  • 1 little question, what do us poor souls with Windows 8.1 with Media Centre (or whatever the proper title is) get? Is that edition classed as Home? Or Pro?
  • I went from 8.1 pro to tp. What about me?
  • Media Center is only for Windows 8.1 Pro devices, so yes, Pro.
  • Go to the desktop and press the Windows + Break keys together, it will tell you what version you have installed.
  • windows 8.1 home with media center ou windows 8.1 pro with media center? probably you have the home edition.. the media center is just an add-on and will be windows 10 without media center... they aren't making a new version for it
  • What is the upgrade path for everyone on the Windows Insider Program?  Will we have to uninstall the preview builds, go back to win8 or win7 and then do the upgrade?  Or will we get the final version as part of the update program?  Has anyone heard anything about this matter?
  • I don't have a source, but they have reported you will be able to upgrade from the program, you shouldn't have to roll back. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
  • You can upgrade, but that doesn't mean you can use your old license to activate Windows 10.
  • There's an article, from like thursday or friday, on here that explains you just update directly from the preview to full windows 10.
  • Yes I read that, but there was one interesting bit in there.  The quote was from Terry Myerson, which he said: "people on the preview program will continue to get updates up to launch."  Notice he did not say: "They will get updated up to and INCLUDING RTM..."  That is why I asked.
  • Uninstall preview, reinstall Win7/8, upgrade to Win10.
  • "As previously announced, Microsoft's free upgrade to Windows 10 for Windows 7, 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 users will only last a year" Wait wait wait wait, stop ypur horse's, you are telling me that if for some reason i don't upgrade my phone during the first year, i will have to PAY for an OTA? If this is true the f u c k you MS neither google or apple pulls t h i s kind of s h i t
  • Stop being so pathetically melodramatic.
    Just install it within those first 365 days!!! It's surely not that difficult?!
    (P.S. You're right. Apple completely cut off support for legacy devices, and most Android devices fail to even get any notable updates at all!)
  • All those Windows Phone 7-7.5 devices didn't get cut off?
  • Hold on, before you pillage a village you might want wait around for more details.
  • I highly doubt it. It's just the usual communications clusterfuck that is part and parcel of the reporting on MS issues.
  • The free offer is for a year, but if you take the offer within the first year you get to keep Windows 10 on that device forever without paying anything.
  • Windows licenses are free for devices with screens smaller than 9" (which includes phones, just in case it isn't clear). This was announced in April last year.
  • ^ This.
  • If your carrier does not upgrade you in a year then it is probably going to be time for a new phone anyways.
  • Wait, no Windows 7 Starter?
  • Windows 7 Starter was mostly installed on netbooks, their low screen resolution is lower than the minimum specification required for Windows Store apps, I suspect that this is the main reason behind the decision to not allow the upgrade.
  • But why? I can open the store w/o problem
  • I guess you'll have to ask Microsoft that question, send them a message on Twitter and see what happens.
  • Pretty sure Starter will get the Home edition.
  • Does anyone have any idea about clean install process? I have a Lenovo desktop with windows 8 licence, together with the restore DVDs. Does anyone know if the DVDs will be available to be bought for free, paying the shipment only, like it happens now, in case you lose them? I will update via Windows Update as soon Windows 10 is available, by when a new OS comes out, I like to have a clean install on my device...
  • Mist likely download ISO and install from USB.
  • The thing is that the DVDs are needed for the drivers and Lenovo utilities, and it would be more straightforward to have those DVDs, rather than using a USB stick. Plus, I don't have the Windows 8 key, since it says it is imprinted on the motherboard, so I don't know what would happen to my license in the case the I install Windows without the Lenovo disks...
  • ?!?!? have you never installed via USB before? It is the exact same install image, but you put it on a USB drive instead of a DVD. Other than that it is just a heck of a lot faster via a flash drive. You will still want to download your Lenovo drivers and put them on a separate DVD or flash drive. Once Windows is up and running, then install your drivers. Easy as pie.
    Win10 should read injected win8 keys off of the motherboard the same way it does when reinstalling win8 with a fresh install. This should not be a problem.
  • I did install Windows with USB. Just it wasn't on a computer with windows 8, therefore I had a key to insert manually during installation, therefore didn't know how this thing worked with this motherboard thing. Plus the installation is easier when all the work of installing drivers is done by the DVDs. That's all. Finally, if I get the chance to have the DVDs from Lenovo itself that would make me feel more confident of a restore support always ready in case of need.
  • Does your tablet have a DVD drive? Mine doesn't.
  • I am talking about a desktop pc with obviously a dvd drive
  • Why complicate things? Do a fresh install of Windows 8/8.1 the day 10 drops, then update it. Done deal. 
  • No, the w10 upgrade doesn't allow clean install. And no again, MS will not offer CDROM for this free upgrade. If you want clean install you need to buy the retail or OEM version of Windows ten.
  • Ok. But just like with Windows 8 and 8.1, once I had the licence for the former, it was fine for the latter, and I could download the ISO of the latter with the key of the former. This should work the same way for windows 10. Finally, Lenovo allows me to order for free, just paying the shipment, windows 8.1 restore DVDs, even if the license the computer was sold with was for windows 8. Thus, at leas for the first year, I think Lenovo should allow its former customer to order windows 10 DVDs since they have Windows 7 and 8.1 devices, that are allowed to upgrade for free to windows 10, if done in the first year from the OS releas. Doing so, as we just saw in the article, brings a lifetime license to Windows 10 for that device. Thus I have the right for the Windows 10 restore DVDs.
  • I honestly do not see how hard this is to comprehend for people. Windows 10 will be free for the first year for home users. After that they have to buy it (that's if people wait after a year)
  • I'm astonished by all this "why do we have to pay for W10 on our phones" talk...jeeeeeeez!
    BUT...it also reads as tho you get to download W10 for free, use it for a year, and then have to pay for it. That can't be right, not what they mean, but in these days of not knowing the meaning of anything, have to wonder what the lawyers behind every announcement are not saying.
  • If people kept reading, they'd see where it says of you upgrade, that you'll get updates for the life of the device.
  • Hi, if I use Windows 8.1 SL will I get Windows 10?
    Thanks
  • It's seems to be still unclear what happens to the insider preview installs. I formatted my laptop, losing the 8.1 with Bing, replacing it (not upgrading) with 10074 Pro. Do I get to keep my Pro version when it goes RTM?
  • No. You will have to reinstall Windows 8.1 with Bing, and upgrade to Windows 10 Home from there. Getting the Insider version is not a free pass to getting Windows 10 Pro later.
  • That makes no sense. You installed an OS without a real license. Not sure if you can use the Windows 8.1 license to activate Windows 10, or if you'll have to reinstall Windows 8.1 first. Pretty sure you'll have to reinstall Windows 8.1.
  • Difference between home and pro?
  • Short answer: It adds business network functionality
    Long answer: go google/bing it. There are lots of little differences, and plenty of sites have tables and charts that explain the difference.
  • So many people are so ......... apprently they can't understand the simplest thing "free for first year, after that you have to pay if you want to upgrade". is this so hard? are they wanting to find a secret message like if Microsoft was the evilest company? like if devil was sitting as chairman waiting for innocent people to fall in some trap that will burn people's souls? Because it seems people overthink and start making crap up. first about how Subscription model and then how they will charge for updates and... I don{t know like if Microsoft didn't say "it's free and you keep it until your PC dies" is it so hard for some people to understand it? I mean... if people upgrade after first year (when they have to pay because for whatever reason they didn't when it was free) do people ask "do I have to pay again the upgrade if I want to reinstall?" it's the same process, the only variant it's it will be free on first year and after that it will go back to paid, but why would it work different? It is just like when people got Windows Media Center for free on Windows 8. Did/Do people have to pay again for WMC everytime they reinstall after free offer was not available? answer: No!    
  • They understand, they are just trying to create confusion to scare people away. Look back to when this was first announced. Some people were spreading the rumor that after the first year Microsoft was going to shut off access to your computer until you paid them a subscription fee. A Microsoft spokesman then said that was not true, that there was not going to be a subscription. They then started claiming that Microsoft was lying, that they were going to force you to pay. Eventually they gave up on that line of FUD, and then moved onto if you reinstalled then you would need to pay, that Microsoft is tricking us because you needed to upgrade, upgrades are not as good as a fresh install and people would end up buying to get the ability to do a fresh install, blah, blah, blah. It happens with every version of Windows, they need to make up some story to drive people away. With Vista because there was a new IP stack, it was going to destroy the Internet because of too much traffic, and some college professor was backing this up. Then they said because of protected path, you would be able to play video that you purchased, even content you recorded yourself from a video camera would not be able to play. With Win7 it was going to be a failure because there was no Blu-Ray playback support out of the box (like the competing OS does), or the bootloader would exclude other OSes from installed on the computer because of Trusted Computing. With Win8 they had some success (if you consider selling **only** 300M+ copies a "failure"), scaring people away because it supposedly had no support for mouse or the desktop, you were going to be forced to only use apps from the Windows store, no DVD playback support, and the locking the bootloader because of EFI keys was resurrected, and so on. It is the same with every version, and it always proves to be made-up lies. Win10 will dominate the other OSes, so they need to create more FUD to drive as many people away from Windows to Mac. And even though they had some success with Win8, it did not drive people to Mac or Linux like they hoped.
  • What happens if I want/ need to reinstall windows 1 year after taking the free upgrade to 10? Do I pay, or how does that work
  • Yes, you need to pay. Sorry!
  • Your Win 7/8/8.1 license will get converted to a 10 license, so you should still be fine after 1 year if you need to re-install.  The only problem is if you want to do a clean install... not sure how that'll work.
  • Probably the same way when we updated from 8 to 8.1. Technically you couldn't do a fresh install, but there is a workaround.
  • Your old key will have been updated to a win10 key. So you'll be fine.  
  • When you try to reinstall it your computer will immediately catch on fire, burn down your house/apartment and make you homeless. You can avoid this by not upgrading and buying the full version.
  • Use the Reset feature in Windows 10. That is, in effect, a clean install.
  • What's wrong with Microsoft. They already give little attention to windows rt. might as well get rid of it with a free upgrade.
  • Windows RT is already dead.
  • There are hell lot of dumb people here who can't even translate the actual meaning of the article & keep asking stupid questions..
  • What about windows starter, will it get free win 10
  • You have windows starter on a machine that can run windows 10?  
  • I'm pretty sure it would run just fine. Maybe.
  • If I upgrade from windows 7 in the first year and my hard drive goes bang after the first year, can I reinstall windows 7 and still get the windows 10 update for free?
  • No.
  • Having read more and more comments since my post I think the answer is yes, but thanks anyway
  • What's the difference between win10 home and pro?
  • Pro allows you to join domains, and it supports Remote Desktop connections.
  • This is great and all, but there appears to be no upgrade path for anyone wanting to do a clean install of Windows 10 rather than an in-place upgrade.  I am not complaining, because it's more than they have to do.  I am just pointing out some limitations with what has been said so far.  It also creates a potential issue for anyone that may want to do a clean install of Windows after the 12 months are up, or anyone that needs to do a clean install due to malware or some other catastrophic issue without a bare-metal restore process.
  • To do a clean install after Windows 10 is installed, use the Refresh and Reset feature.
  • You are correct, that is certainly an option; however, it still doesn't help for anyone that has a hard drive failure unless you have a bare-metal restore procedure which most people do not.  It also doesn't help if your computer has been infected with malware that prevents the "refresh and reset" process from executing.  I imagine that will be a small percentage, but it still sucks for those people.  Obviously they would still be at the break-even point for any other OS upgrade if they ended up having to buy a license, but I still wonder what Microsoft's response will be to those people if they call or email support.
  • I'm 98% positive that even though Win10 is being delivered through Windows Update, the set up process will still ask if you want to do the upgrade clean or in-place. Most likely Windows Update will download the ISO in the background then mount it.
  • Boot into Advanced Startup and Windows 10 will let you do a clean install, just as you would from an ISO.
  • Remote desktop, bitlocker
  • Ah. Home and Pro.
  • I'd prefer to do a clean install not be updated via Update........but, I'll take it.
  • I so agree with you!
  • Is this paid thing only for PC and not phones or should I be worried?
  • I wonder how much it will cost for a license for Windows 10 Home. I hope they have a price of $40. Maybe a promotional price of $10 for Windows 10 Home would be sweet for the first year.
  • It is free. How better can it get from there? Or are you talking for a new DIY PC?
  • Few of my Windows updates are getting errors and that's the reason why I could never update to 8.1. Seems the same will happen with 10
  • Since the upgrade will be offered thru Windows update does that mean we won't be able to download an iso to do a clean install? Anyone know?
  • Pretty sure Windows 10 lets you do a clean install from the Advanced Startup.
  • Omg, so many mountains from mole hills in this thread!! I don't understand all the complaining. It's a free upgrade. And don't worry about your phone and tablets under 9" of screen size. Windows is free on such devices.
  • Devices with W8.1 with Bing will be upgraded to W10 Home, isn't? Will I get the desktop interface in my HP Stream 7? Also, it seems like people like to overcomplicate things in here.
  • Hi MikeLuna yes W8.1 with Bing will be upgraded to W10 Home because it is just standerd W8.1 Your HP Stream 7 proberbly wont have the desktop interface it will proberbly have the tablet interface wich is similar to WP with it only being 7 inch any device 7 inch and under will have the tablet interface i hope that this has helped you mate.
  • No. There is no tablet interface. Everything is layered on-top of the desktop, and you can switch between desktop and tablet mode. 
  • The RTM of Windows 10 must be on the horizon for Microsoft to give this much info. This is exciting. :)
  • I surely hope they find a way to let us do a clean install og W10, instead of going through an upgrade process. Shouldn't be hard to let you download an ISO and generate a W10 license key based on your old W7/8 key.
    I'm pretty sure I did something similar with older windows upgrade, just had to fiddle a bit with the registry....
  • Probably. Like when we updated to 8.1. You couldn't do a clean install, but there is a workaround using your activation key. When I asked Microsoft for a 8.1 key so I could do a fresh install they suggested I installed W7 (laptop came with that) then upgrade to 8.0 and then upgrade to W8.1, can you believe it?
  • How about 8.1 Single Language? Does it count as normal 8.1?
  • yes it does mate
  • Embedded SKUs of qualifying editions also gets free upgrades to Windows 10 IoT within the first year.
  • Where does Windows with Bing fit into this?
  • It doesn't exist anymore.
  • For the life of me, I do not understand why this is controversial. Upgrade for free, enjoy, and shut up!  This used to be expensive and a good argument for buying a Mac. Windows 10 is working great for me now and I look forward to the RTM. 
  • The reason the Macs are worth it is because the hardware is fantastic. I've never seen a Windows AIO with Screen, Speakers, FFC, Radios as good as the iMacs. Same goes for the MacBooks. They're worth it on quality and the support is far better than any Windows OEM. Apple OS upgrades were dirt cheap even when they weren't free so that was never much of a consideration. Upgrade pricing was never an issue because most people upgraded when they bought new Windows PCs. It's only an issue now cause apparently people confuse their PC for a smartphone or tablet.
  • We cannot use a single PC for lifetime. What if we have to assemble a new pc, we have to purchase windows 10 license?
  • Yes, you will have to purchase a Windows license if you are building a new PC.
  • Yep. Thus it is a free 'upgrade'. If you do not currently have windows installed, then you have nothing to upgrade from, which means you will have to buy a full copy. On the plus side, with the last few versions of Windows there has been a cheap option available for the first few months. They were practically giving away win7 and win8 keys when they first came out. Not sure if we will see deals like that again on top of this free upgrade deal... but we can hope!
  • And your new "assembled" PC doesn't cost you anything? The cost of genuine Windows is peanuts in comparison. I have used Windows for many years, changed HW many times, the OS is long amortized.
  • I've already come across a problem in trying to upgrade from W7 to W10tp, they've changed the system requirements for the 64bit version... Therefore although my Dell desktop runs 64bit W7 fine, 64bit W10 won't install at all. I got around it by doing a fresh 32bit W10tp dual boot partition which runs ok, but for those less technically minded, I don't think upgrading from W7 64bit to W10 32bit is possible, or even perhaps desirable.
  • Hi I33tuc you cant do a direct upgrade from a 64-bit W7 to a 32-bit W10 because of the differant architecture but you can do a direct upgrade from 64-bit W7 to a 64-bit W10 with out any problems at all.  
  • Yes that's obviously fine in theory, but in practice, my experience is different. Because MS have changed the system requirements between the 64bit versions of W7 and W10, not all W7 hardware is going to be able to directly "Windows Update" to 10. I'm not complaining... Just saying how it is. I just hope there will be a free ISO available as method to upgrade as well. EDIT: Just to clarify, it's not a huge problem for me, I've already got 32bit W10tp on my desktop, which will graduate to RTM eventually anyway. My laptop, tablet and phone all run 8.1, so I don't foresee any upgrade problems with those.
  • Ok, there it is stated again. No love for Windows Rt. Please give yourself a short push even if you are not directly affected and vote for: https://windows.uservoice.com/forums/265757-windows-feature-suggestions/suggestions/7012012-build-an-upgrade-for-windows-rt
  • While RT is not getting win10 you do realize that they will be getting an update that will bring some/most of the functionality right?
  • Yes, that I understand completely. But as this update isn't announced yet I have a fear that this might be like 7.8 for phones - but I doubt it. But if you give access to some/many Win 10 features... why don't name it like that. I even would take the mobile version for the Surface RT. Like a version that is only for existing devices. No new device >8'' would qualify. Does that make sense?
  • For all those wonderign if you'll have to pay to upgrade to Windows 10 Mobile: A year ago, Microsoft made Windows free for devices with screens smaller than 9" (which is now called Windows 10 Mobile.) As far as I know, this policy hasn't changed.
  • What if I already have Windows 10 TP? WHAT DO I UPGRADE TO?!
  • Soooooo we'll only get updates through Windows Updates? No downloadable ISOs like at the moment? (TP version)
  • Not fair for us that own Surface 2 and RT devices. We supported Microsoft blindly and now they get to dump us!!
  • The WinMo 10 Enterprise thing still confuses me.
  • I figured this was the way it was going to be. Looks like I am going to have to buy a copy of win10 Pro for my laptop after all, part of me was hoping that those of us in the beta program would get pro for free somehow, but that is fine.
  • My Lumia 2520 is basically a Lumia 1520 with a bigger screen.... Wish I could just put Windows 10 Phone on it...  Shame to be orphaned...
  • I just hope that I can download an ISO of whatever my upgrade is.
  • I am using a laptop that came with Windows 7 (Home I think). Almost a year after  I bought it, MS offered Windows 8 to users with a really low price (15 euro) and I got from MS a Windows 8 upgrade (ISO). Now that we will get Windows 10 for free, we will be eligible for an "upgrade" version again? If I need to format my laptop, I would habe to install my original OS, then update it to W8, then to W8.1 and finally to W10???   In my opinion, MS should find a way and allow us to download an ISO of the full W10 and allow us to have a clean install.
  • Windows 7 starter missing in action?
  • What about the Lumia 2520! Will that get the special update? I hope so at least!
  • Wonder if my w7 ultimate opk key qualifies
  • After reading a ton of comments about people having a complete lack of understanding on the update (I wonder if it is feigned stupidity/outrage or people are real that thick).  Here is the dummies guide to the update for the consumer version.     For the Deskop (not enterprise): If you own  a legal copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8 then for one year from the date Windows 10 is released you will have the opportunity to upgrade to this new version for free.  No cost. No dinero necesario.   Sorry, this free update is not for Vista or XP users just Windows 7 or 8.x owners.  After doing update you own that Windows 10 copy.  No yearly charges.  So all of you struggling with costs and subscriptions, stop, just stop.  All you have to know is: do the darn update in the first year and it costs you nothing  for the update and nothing  to use your new Windows 10 that year, the year after that, the year after that, etc... You own it!   This update process is for x86 CPU based  desktops, laptops, (larger) tablet based systems. After the one year time  is up and you foolishly never  got around to updating from Windows 7/8 to Windows 10 than there will be  a cost associated with the doing the desktop update from Windows 7/8 to Windows 10.   No I don't know the cost but, I supect it will fairly low.   I repeat if you already updated within the first year you own the  Windows 10 OS for your device. There are no additional future costs to use the desktop Windows 10.  No matter what.  Whether you update for free or pay for it after the year there will be no yearly fees for maintaince: patches, security features or just to use Windows 10. Sure, maybe in the future they may add a feature they may charge for.  For example,  if the charged it would be for a featured not required for use of the OS, similar to how they changed previously for the now discontinued Media Center.  But, in now way will general updates, patches, security, etc.. cost after you update (this year, the following year, and so on...)   From the time you attain Windows 10 Home or Pro you can use it for as long as you want  and they will not ask you for a dime (no money) to use Windows 10 you have. There is no time limits on usage, no  subscriptions for using this free update.  Once again no additional costs. What if your machine drives goes bad (winth no ecovery partition) and you have to reinstall it?  Don't know how it works.  But you own the copy Windows 10.  Not sure if they give you a key for you to save.  But, the update will be tied to the previous Windows version you updated from.  Whether you have to reinstall that previous OS then reinstall from that point or use ISO and be allowed to reinstall that way I do not know. The point is the the verification database will track this info and associated key.  Yes, even after a year.  Any failed system means the reinstallation will not cost you.  I repeat for the third time:  with the free update you own the Windows 10 and will not have to repurchase for that device if something happens within that first year  or anytime that first year. For phones:  It is free. Did I say something strange.  OK, once again it is free.   Windows Phone (now Windows Mobile) is an OEM based (can't buy it directly) and it costs nothing for the OEM to use and that amazing free cost is passed onto you the consumer.  You initlal update to Windows 10 Mobile (if  you are not part of the Insider program) will be dependent on when your phone provider gets their act together to release the Windows 10 update for your phone model.  However, once this update is available for your it will be free update from Windows 8.x Phone you currently have.  Any future updates to Windows 10 Mobile itself will also will be free.  Note: not all features for the Windows 10 update or future updates will be available for your phone (epescially witth missing hardware requirements, e.g. Continuum).  However, Microsoft guarantees support (security, patches) for their phones for I believe 3 years from a phones release.  Here is the really good news:   even though the initial update to Windows 10 Mobile from Windows 8.x Phone is dependent on your phone provider once that is done all updates to Windows 10 Mobile to the OS and App updates will be pushed by Microsoft directly.  Yes, updates will not be dependent on the slowness of your phone provider. Note: firmware and some phone drivers will still be controlled by your phone provider but, any device updated to the  Windows 10 will receive OS and app updates on regular schedule.  Recap: Windows 10 Mobile will be free to all current Windows 8.x Phone users; yup that means not cost to you, no future costs to use Windows 10 Mobile.  Unfortunately, it just may be a while for you to receive the update as it depends on your service provider. A proviso: Those of you that are part of the Insider Program (for either the Phone or Desktop) you will continue to receive early releases/test/beta editions of the OS.  If a Phone Insider you will have access to Windows 10 long before provider gets off their butt. * It has been pointed out I really shouldn't say own your copy of Windows. You have never owned any copy of Windows it has always been considered a open ended license. Whether it  Windows 3 all the way to Windows 10 your usage have always been under licenses to use the product not own.  But, no matter lets just use the term you retain the rights to the license of Windows 10 after the first year, no need to pay anything to use it again. Free, nothing charges next year, free, free, free.  Ok, one more time for those that still don't get it: it is FREE to use today, tomorrow, this year, next year, the follow year, 10 years from now.    
  • At least they are enabling people to upgrade for free for a year. A first for microsoft.
  • A simple and easy way for Microsoft to enable all users to get the free upgrade from other OSes for the first year would be to register the old OSes product key and the device hardware hash in their activation servers. Thereafter post one year if anyone (who upgraded) wants to clean install Windows 10 on the same machine, they can easily do so with the earlier OSes product key.
  • Excludes Windows Enterprise and RT? That's mean enterprise's users cannot upgrade?
  • A COMPUTER is also a DEVICE. It does not refer to phones only. Sheesh..
  • Will​ laptops with windows 7 starter get updated to windows 10 too?
  • "qualified Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 devices in the first year" Windows 10 is extremely slow and crashy on the 630 right now. Hope that changes.