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Microsoft will let you upgrade to Windows 10 for free, even if you're running a pirated version [Updated]

Cortana for Windows 10 Settings
Cortana for Windows 10 Settings

Update Microsoft has now sent a statement to Polygon that says even if pirates do update their old non-licensed version of Windows to Windows 10, they will still be using an un-licensed software product. Here's Microsoft's new statement:

"We have always been committed to ensuring that customers have the best Windows experience possible. With Windows 10, although non-Genuine PCs may be able to upgrade to Windows 10, the upgrade will not change the genuine state of the license. Non-Genuine Windows is not published by Microsoft. It is not properly licensed, or supported by Microsoft or a trusted partner. If a device was considered non-genuine or mis-licensed prior to the upgrade, that device will continue to be considered non-genuine or mis-licensed after the upgrade."

Original story In what may turn out to be an historic move in the battle against piracy, Microsoft's Terry Myerson has announced that the software vendor will allow all customers — whether they're running genuine Windows software or a pirated version — to upgrade to Windows 10 for free.

The move is clearly targeted at the Chinese market, where two-thirds of all PCs run pirated versions of Windows. Speaking to Reuters, Myerson said:

"We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10," he said in a telephone interview with Reuters. The plan is to "re-engage" with the hundreds of millions of users of Windows in China, he said, without elaboration.

By giving away Windows 10 for free, at least for the first year, Microsoft is deviating from its regular sales model for the first time. The software maker announced earlier today that Windows 10 will be launching this summer in 190 countries, with the vendor focusing its attention on China.

Lenovo has committed to rolling out the Windows 10 upgrade to its customers as soon as it becomes available, as well as stating that it would launch its first Windows Phone over the summer.

The Redmond giant also inked a deal with Chinese internet portal Tencent in bringing popular games such as League of Legends to the Windows 10 store. Tencent has stated that it will also be working to roll out the Windows 10 update as soon as possible.

Source: Reuters

444 Comments
  • Wow, thats big big news!
  • Is Windows 10 the last operating system?.....where all new future enhancements, upgrades and changes would come as updates?
  • I have a feeling that you may be right!
  • Windows 10 for next 10 years.... Up updating And when 50 billion devices run windows...a new version windows10 fiction will be launched with powerful qualities shown in fiction movies.
  • Nope... Windows 10... It's already turned into a reality from the fiction movie with the help of Microsoft HOLOLENS
  • Yes, Windows 10 is the last OS from Microsoft for a while. If something revolutionary happens that warrants Windows 11 or completely different name then they will change but I expect next 5 years (at the very least) to be just Windows 10 updates.
  • Thanks...I'm really glad
  • Why would you expect this? They have a very clear and consistent release schedules. Riding a version out for 5 years would suggest a lack of features/vision worthy of an version update. Consumers like version updates. It also prevents an endless amount of versions of a single release, which is rough for many reason from troubleshooting to compatibility. It would be a VERY wild shift for them to change and I see no reason for it.
  • Windows 10 was supposed to be called "Windows". They added 10 due to reasons you said (consumers like version updates). However, Xbox One gets monthly updates. Do consumers miss them? No - because when they log after update they are notified what's new. If you look at new setup and post-update screens on Windows 10 you will see that they inform you about new features on first boot after updates are released. Windows 10 might get point updates (10.1, 10.2) but major version number will not change.
  • While I'd agree that consumers do look forward to new versions coming out, I'm guessing that alot of this becomes moot when you start to give the OS away for free. People tend to keep a version, miss the next version, and then make the jump, because it costs them money. The one thing that everyone has to realise is that they're puposely limiting consumer choice, and for good reason. At the moment, you're going to have a choice between Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. In the future, as Windows 7 becomes EOL, you'll have a choice of Windows 10 or...Windows 10. It makes it harder for you as a user to choose what you like or don't like about an OS, because the intelligent thing to do (From MS' perspective) is to release updates as non-descript update numbers and get away from "Update 1" etc. Essentially it forces everyone to get on board, so that they can streamline everything around App and SDK format. I would wager that consumers would give up choice, if given something for free.
  • To translate "something revolutionary" may also include a desperate need to balance a checkbook, or a way to get around bad PR at some date in the future. Seriously though, I believe win10 will be around for a long time which will be great for adoption just like XP was. If they can get users to use services like Office 365 and Store purchases then they should be able to make plenty of money without forcing needless updates to users and businesses.
  • That was the idea, I think that was all-but announced.
  • In my opinion it only works if you are on China
  • No, to quote Terry Myerson, "We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10." They are doing it everywhere, but China is a large reason WHY they are doing it at all.
  • Yeah awesome.. I lost the authentic version due to hard disk failure and no way to restore it
  • No backup? Or key written down? Also on newer laptops (as an example) the manufacturer key is built in to the machine. Our Dell laptop had the HD die with no warning. Downloaded a clean copy of 8.1 straight from MS and installed, activated flawlessly with no effort on my part. Just some info, it might help!
  • I didn't back up... Its dell laptop with preloaded win7.. If MS use MS account to authenticate purchase feature it would be great..
  • You should have a key on the underside of the laptop though, or provided to you. You can use any software, even download legal ISO's and install it then use your legit key. I've had to do this a couple of times
  • That would be really cool actually, if they let you tie your key to your MS account.
  • If you had a pre-built machine with 8/8.1 then the product key should be baked into the motherboard which will allow you to do a legal reinstall using any media of your choice (provided Home->Home or Pro->Pro). If you are on an older machine with Vista/7 then a simple phone call to your manufacturer should get you the info you need to get your product key for your box, though they will probably not sell you reinstallation media, so you may need to hunt that down separately.
  • i don't know , but do you think it is fair ?? because there is people have bought windows 8/7 with money . 
  • Has nothing to do with being fair, and everything to do with sucking up to the government in charge of the largest growing populaiton on the plannet.
  • God! It's too difficult to know that "who replied to who" while using the WC app.
  • This... And no vote visibility...
  • I am using a pirated version of windows 7/8.1/server 2008 R2 and i m feeling guilty about that , but Microsoft products are too expensive in my country to buy .
  • Windows 8 was $15 for 6-12 months after release...
  • in any country was that ? 
  • As far as I'm aware it was offered Worldwide. I got it in Australia for that price, and it was definitely being offered in the US, UK, Canada etc.
  • I get tired of this argument.  Too expensive!  What is your return on investment for using a product?  Do you make money in any way using the OS if so then it is not too expensive, it is part of doing business. You can get Windows 7 or 8 cheap almost anywhere in the world.   What do yo do for a living? Is is something that provides a service and if people did not pay you for that service you be pissed?  Why would you be upset? Aren't you doing the same thing here? Apparently you had enough money to get the hardware to build a server?  When building that server did you cheat the hardware company with fake credit cards?  Would that be wrong? Same thing as stealing software.  Why are you using Server 2008 in the first place.  It is not the only option out there, Linux is free.  Sorry for being so high and mighty but if you can't afford something work for it, make the money and buy it or use free software (which is pretty good, and best of all "free")
  • Your not reading the whole story.  "If a device was considered non-genuine or mis-licensed prior to the upgrade, that device will continue to be considered non-genuine or mis-licensed after the upgrade" Yes, they will get the upgrade, no it will not be a licensed copy like yours will be.  Not sure what if any limitations will be on that, or if they will be forced to pay for a license after a period of time.  They haven't been clear on that yet.
  • *you're. And the article was updated... it originally suggested it would be a non-genuine to genuine upgrade
  • This has to be the one of boldest decisions MS has ever made.  It is basically the one time amnesty granted to the illegal Windows users.  Those people will help jacking up the W10 conversion pace in an explosive way.  With them, the W10 users could reach to 700-800 millions by the end of the first year on the world wise base.  The fence-sitting developers will jump in the Universal apps camp quickly.  The developers will make WP apps without even targeting WP.  Compounded with MS and Xiaomi Mi 4 joint venture, the W10 phone adoption will be swift and smooth.  MS has made some really smart moves.
  • Doesn't make sense to me. You upgrade and you don't get a legit licence for the software upgrade? What's the point?
  • Exactly what I was wondering: what's the point then? to show larger marketshare numbers?
  • Turns out, not big anymore after the updated statement from Microsoft.
  • Wow. Truly awesome move by MS. Hopefully this will kill the "M$" moniker once and for all!
  • As long as there are hipsters that claim to be anti-corporation without understanding what it means to be anti-corporation, the M$ moniker will thrive.
  • Hipsters that are anti-corporation but love Google or Apple. Love 'em some hipsters.
  • Hipster = Entitled Hippie
  • Hipster = haven't had to experience what life is really like yet.
  • let's get this into perspective. I friend of my bother bought a PC and office for 111€ for the latter one alone as he setup the PC unknowingly that there's a way around this he set up an M$ Account, and later activated Office. later his PC refuses the password and the web sign-in over the browser says account doesnt exist. as he tried to re-create the same acc with the same pass in the browser it says that the pw is too weak, choosing a stronger password, he re-created the account and reset the PC to factory defaults. as he wants to activate office with that acc it says that it's the wrong acc and M$ refuses to help.   there were and there are and there will be ppl who have problems with M$.
  • I myself use the App$e moniker as it is more appropriate and has been for years.
  • App£e?
  • More like $$$$$.
  • I like the M$ moniker, because when someone writes something and uses it, I know to stop reading then and there because they have nothing worthwhile to say.
  • Good move
  • Everybody gets W10, except the surface2. Keep the entire world happy yeah right.
  • surface 2 will get some form of upgrade , some of the w10 features
  • Even pirates get the entire version for free
  • Quit your crying. I have a Surface 2 as well.
  • Sh#t up and mind your own business
  • When you're misinforming people because of your inexcusable butthurt, it is my damned business. As a Surface 2 owner, I have every right to speak up to something you said and that is not true.
  • You know very well it's not getting full W10, it has even been on the frontpage here. WP 7.8 all over again, or you wanna call Daniel a liar? Now you stop your misinforming.
  • We will get Windows 10, just a lighter version of it because of Windows RT. Saying that we won't get it and that the pirates will get more than us is lame. You don't even know what and how it is going to be for us, you saw "some features" and already whining about it.
  • Relaxxx. It's too early in the morning (Eastern Time) to quarrel over updates. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Guys, we all know it is due to the system specs that the surface 2 doesnt get the update. I get that it is frustrating, but they cannot put that much time and effort into making a special windows 10 for ARM tablets when there are only so few of those devices around. Besides, I think microsoft intends never to make windows tablets based on ARM tech again. The x86 tech is way more interesting for tablets, even when the ARM is decent. There will never be another ARM tablet running windows, and I understand why microsoft does it. I think it is more than fair to give you guys with ARM tablets a decent update with new features, but do not blame them for not persuing ARM tablets, because we all know that that is just not wise from Microsoft's standing point.
  • Are you stupid? You make it a Windows Phone 7.8 all over again, but it isn't! The Surface 2 has a 10" screen but runs on ARM, the ARM based version of Windows 10 is optimized for screen sizes below 8". So the Surface 2 gets a special version of Windows 10 for ARM. You still won't have a full functional desktop, just like you don't have it now on WindowsRT 8.1, but you will still be able to run every app in the Windows (10) Store. Nothing is going to change, the whole Windows Phone 7.8 controversy was about the fact that these devices couldn't run Windows Phone 8 apps, this is not going to happen with your Surface 2... SO DUDE YOU REALLY NEED TO TAKE A CHILLPIL AND RELAX!!! Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • If you wanted full Windows, you should have saved up a little more for the Pro version.
  • Don't tell him what he should have done or what he should have bought. You have no idea if this guy can afford a pro version in the first place. Many of us, including me, bought the Surface 2 because it was a great package with a good price.
  • Buy what you want, but don't whine about not having the full version of Windows when you knew that going into it. Lol
  • Windows 10 was not a thing then. No way to know the later versions would be crippled. Still, not complaining about it.
  • Problem is the x86/x64 apps work on Intel/AMD architecture only, not ARM architecture. Doesn't matter what Microsoft do, those desktop apps still won't work. It's why they don't work on RT and why they won't work on ARM tablets on 10.
  • Very true & well put.
  • Surface 2 use RT version of the Windows, which means it runs only Windows Store's app only, so it get the FULL Windows 10, except the part where it use to run application/software
  • It's unfortunate, but RT never took off, especially once Intel Atom tablets became a thing. They pretty much matched RT in terms of battery life and performance, and could run light desktop apps like Chrome (A major comfort blanket for many consumers). Anything hardcore? Not at all, but still more capable than RT, so RT failed miserably. No point in developing it, given how comparatively few devices running it. I still think it's a giant middle finger to those decided to buy the Surface RT, Surface 2, etc., but I also can see why it's not worth Microsoft's development time. I just hope RT devices can still run all the new Universal Apps that should be coming down the pike. :)
  • Now this is Revolutionary!!
  • Wow
  • Didn't see that one coming :)
    Congrats Microsoft!
  • Really, so we wasted money being legal.. Nice one Microsoft
  • If you have a paid version, you paid for a fully functional, secure and regularly supported, updated and patched software...you didn't paid to have next OS free =) I currently own a legit one because I can afford. I remember when I didn't cause I couldn't afford one and the limitations are beyond real and security wise, forget it
  • Couldn't have told it better, well explained
  • What limitations? Cracked versions have absolutely zero limitations and security wise have no issues whatsoever. You're talking out of your ass.
  • Except for the fact the you were a mf thief
  • ...and that's a limitation and an issue?
  • Yes, it is. Being a thief is an insult to your community. With software, it shows that you prefer to use a specific OS, but dont feel the people who wrote it deserve to be paid for their time. It shows that you believe you are entitled to things simply because you want them. Look up narcissism and see if it resonates with you. Try to grasp the concept that all things come with price and your ability to avoid paying for them doesnt make you anything other than thief. If you are ok with that, see the narcissism definition again.
  • Don't really see why all the rage, i'm simply keeping the conversation... narcisism has absolutely nothing to do with piracy, you completely missed the point there. If someone doesn't want to pay for something it's exactly because of that: they're "stealing" a copy they don't want to pay for. Self righteousness and narcisism? No...
  • And why don't they want to pay for it? What reason exists that does not ultimately end up with a person believing they are entitled to something for less than what others pay?
  • It's simple, i presume some people don't have the money to pay for the OS but don't want to miss out since it's standing free to pickup on torrent sites. It's simply too easy to get to all that content for free...
  • I asked for an explanation other than entitlement.
  • If you can't afford to pay for something does not automatically make you a thief
  • Correct, but if you can't afford it but take it anyway, that does make you a thief - and an asshole.
  • You stole the software by using a cracked version... you stole by not paying those who spent money and time to develope the OS - then you get the nerve to call somebody an ass who calls you out when you are the real ass?!!
  • Since you seem to be mentally challenged could you quote where i said that i use cracked OS or that i cracked it? If you're looking to start an argument i suggest looking at the mirror.
  • You did not waste anymoney. Just cause a pirate will always be a pirate and you will always pay for microsoft services (which i don't say is bad or a waste of money, but more like, support). Anyway, if you think that way then yes you wasted money just from beginnig just cause all pirated versions get what you get and when a new system comes they will crack the activation of that to. So anyways would have been used by people that cannot afford. So actually Ms is taking the right decision. The whole windows 10 ecosistem (smartphones, xbox and pc's) will grow up one more time.
  • Windows 8 Pro is too expensive in my country. The standard version is priced at around ₹7.5k ($120) and the pro is ₹18000 ($186)! When you're trying to build your own PC, Windows seems like an unnecessary purchase, because you know you can get it cracked :P
  • They offered $15 upgrades or $45 full-price for 6-12 months, before going up to the 'normal price' you indicated. It was ridiculously easy to lie about the upgrade, so I only paid $15
  • Hopefully you are 14 years old because if you have these notions as an adult I feel really bad for you.
  • Now all everyone need is pirated version of windows 7 or 8 to get windows 10 for free
  • Not unless you're still running XP or Vista. I imagine a lot of XP and Vista users are flooding the torrent searches about now. Maybe even some Linux users who chose Linux because they wanted a free OS but didn't want to pirate may actually try it. 
  • Yeah that's bullshit. Pirated versions should not be upgraded, especially free. I build my own pc's and purchase OS keys and while it can get expensive I work hard and budget to afford it. Now MS decided to spit in my face so so they can have more users? Why should I stay with MS then? Does loyalty count for anything these days?
  • OMFG who cares? You did the right thing by paying for the software. Do you need a medal for it? How about a personal letter from the MS board saying you are better than the thieves? What good doed it do you to have more. You already got what you paid for didn't you?
  • Says the childish pirate that's glad to have gotten away with it. Check your attitude at the door. It's disgraceful.
  • No, I see this a ploy to lock out future pirated versions using special encryption.
  • i'm upgrading...for totally free yay! :p
  • Yeah I really like the whole free idea... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • At least say thanks and help Microsoft and advertise about this to your friends and known members. You can be thankful to Microsoft by going these. Can you imagine how much Microsoft is sacrificing by saying "Windows 10 for free"
  • Far far less than one might think at first look. Windows revenue comes from something like 95% OEMs and 5% end users.  And the vast majority of OEM machines go to enterprise rather than private individuals. OEMS will still be required to purchase Windows 10 just as they have 8.1 and prior versions, and the vast majority of users get their copies of windows pre-installed on PCs; thus MS still makes a LOT of money from windows 10 even if it is 'free' for existing users of previous versions legit or not.
  • I have it posted everywhere :) this is a huge step forward for the company
  • Great news! Mine is a pirated one, before all The rage begins no, i didn't choose it to be pirated, i live in a third world country in which almost all of the computers come with pirated windows.
  • And where would that be
  • Happens in India too.
  • Happens on Brazil. PCs comes with Windows Vista, than they upgrate do 7 non-genuine. After that, MS launch new Windows 8 and they don't upgrade 'cause start menu. Who upgrade, is a non-genuine version. And new PCs with Windows 8, people install Windows 7, non-genuine 
  • They want almost everyone to have official version, not the pirated one....btw I'm 100% sure that they know who has a pirated version, + the total number of them.... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • It's not like third world countries can't afford it!I live in a third world country, problem is when you go to buy a software, finding a genuine copy is hard! And if you did its like 70$, but next to it you find a cracked 1$ version,any sane person would go for the 1$!
  • During XP era, I was a kid and i had no knowledge about pirated non-pirated etc. If I wanted windows XP, I would go to computer store and ask for windows Xp and i would pay for it and go home. I didnt knew that 30 cents windows CD is carrying a pirated windows XP.
  • In the article even India needs to be listed along with China with most pirated versions .. Majority users will be having pirated ones unless we get genuine one while purchasing the PC\Laptop here in India!!
  • Haha, this will burry the moneysuckers (apple) once and for all. Oh well, not quite, Microsoft always helped their sorry a$$es.
  • Yes
  • Woooooow awesome!!!! Lots of good news today! But please Microsoft don't make everything free and go fully on ads. 1 year for free and then make them pay!!!
  • Please, MSFT is not Superfish. There will be zero ads, I guarantee that.
  • True. There are not adds in bing weather or outlook.com, right?
  • There are but not on the taskbar, not on the Games app or the Xbox app, not in the start menu. Outlook and Weather are downloadable apps which can be uninstalled, not in built like the Xbox or Games app which cannot be unisntalled.
  • Like, what? Ads in task manager?
  • Please wait 5 seconds before you can skip ad and end task lol
  • @tareq hahaha XD
  • lol that would be funny, and stupid :'D
  • Ahahahaha both brilliant and OMG DELETE HIS COMMENT BEFORE MS SEES IT
  • Lol
  • This is BIG. Microsoft definitely has changed as a company, for the better! Hats off!
  • haha..I can see my laptop coming back to life
  • WOW great news and a good move by MS :)   BTW harish source link is broken
  • Fixed it. Thanks!
  • Holy fuck. :D
  • Everyone! Lets bring attention to Microsoft not to release Cortana to Androind and iOS!!  https://windowsphone.uservoice.com/forums/101801-feature-suggestions/sug...
  • Microsoft is concentrating on providing their services to every OS (office, onedrive, cortana etc.)
    Its another way to generate more revenue, and great one too. Just coz some ppl don't like it, they will not change their plans.
  • True, they forgot their Windows Phone Users, they no longer give them privelage. I have no other reason to keep using Windows Phone.
  • Exactly! Be happy Microsoft provides its services everywhere on EVERY OS! Google and Apple don't do the same thing...in fact, Google's services on WP are fair, at best...hideously awful at worst.
  • Agreed, let's all vote for this... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I can't be the only one who finds it ironic that you're voting against briging Cortana to Android, yet you posted that message from the Windows Central app...for Android.
  • No, i will not vote for this. Its called business, btw m using WP ND proud of it
  • On the contrary, I'm GLAD they are doing that. It's getting Microsoft's name out there so people want to switch. There was an article written about this exact thing in why Windows is being offered for free: It's the hope that since you like it, you'll buy its complement. (Like Skype, you'll then buy Office 365 for more upgrades.) trust me, this is a GOOD thing.
  • Even windows 7 pirated PCs ??
  • yep
  • So how will MS earn? I was thinking maybe i upgrade my win 8 that i got from uni and I will get license for free for win 10 with no expire date.
  • consumers = freenium enterprise/OEM = licensing
  • I think this is a strategic decision rather than banking on it creating profits straight away. Giving customers with pirate copies free upgrades is not losing any sales because they wouldn't pay anyway. Providing them with legitimate copies brings them into the fold, makes them proper customers and increases Windows 10 user base. This then feeds into providing a compelling argument to developers that there are lots of users out there. Additionally, the pirate customers will be using Microsoft services and there will be an increased likelihood that they might buy Microsoft paid services (or products like Xbox, Windows phone) when they can afford to do so.
  • Pirates, don't buy anything. Ever. They won't be using any services. They will rather use other free alternatives. This really does beg a question: Since pirated and legal versions were always the same, what did any customer gain by shelling out hundreds of dollars or pounds buying a legal copy? I just calculated and in my household in last decade, I've paid over £1100 for legal Windows installations - doesn't count devices that came pre-installed with XP and stuff. But for upgrades that is what I've shelled out. How am I any different than that pirate who paid nothing for last 10 years and will still get same Windows 10 as me? I also pay for Microsoft services. I know for the fact that a pirate won't pay a penny as he doesn't want to pay for anything - that's why he is a pirate.
  • First, you were not paying for windows 10. It is free now for all but you paid for windows XP, VISTA, 7, 8 etc. And what you got in exchange for that was regular updates and securtiy patches etc. I know it cuz i was pirate. Not by choice, there was no orignal windows to buy in my country. Anyways thats different story. I was not able to use even the built-in media player and i had to use old version of internet explorer and i had no backups (were there backups available back than? I dont know). Most of built in MS softwares used to update with windows update, something i pirated version was incapable of.   And your 1100 pounds have supported Microsoft. That support along with everyone else's is the reason we had great windows like windows 7, 8  and now 10.
  • Have you EVER used **** (not naming software - Bing is your friend)? Using that - you can activate ANY copy of Windows. That means you got regular updates, patches everything and your Windows would still be active. So the myth that pirated Windows never got updates and patches is wrong. Wrongly pirated ones failed to get updates. But if you knew the right tool like all other pirates, you would know that there has been a way for at least last 6 years to be able to use Windows by simply activating an illegal copy and using it like you bought it. No limitations. Ever.
  • Well in that case i got 2 things to say. 1st, I take back what i said in last comment you are correct. 2nd, The FcuK was MS doing for 6 years? They could not ban these illegal windows? How are we safe than? Even with these security updates if millions of ppl were not caught using illegal windows like orignal than go those updates keep us secure?
  • Nope, MS slept through it all. To an extent that the same software is capable to even pirate Office 2013! Free with all future updates allowed.
  • Pirates, don't buy anything. Ever
    not true, it is just cause they can't afford it. and mostly they are expesive in other countries too, with no student discount. and a lots of people don't have any idea if their windows is geniune or fake.
    They won't be using any services
    they will once they have money or credit card, in India where windows piracy is so common, people don't trend to use credit card or rather don't have one. and they simply pay some random shop to install an OS, not knowing it is geniune or not. i myself planning to move to onedrive with office 365, once i have a credit card, I think it would've been better if they have student offer in every country, or cheap price in third world.
  • While the "Pirates only steal because they can't afford it" may be true for some people, it isn't true for everyone. I have known several very wealthy people that pirated because it was available, and they wanted to hang on to the money they had. Kind of like Scrooge McDuck, they would rather get everything free and continue to accumulate their wealth. One man lived in a $10,000,000+ home and used pirated versions of XP and Office. Don't assume all pirated versions are for the poor or for where it is unavailable. That does exist in large quantity, but some people are just stealing for the sake of stealing.  My wife bought an "upgrade" to Windows 7 off the internet once to upgrade from her XP. We paid full price for XP, but she found this "Windows 7 Ultimate" edition for $40, thought it was a good deal, and bought it. She got taken. When I found out where she got it and how muh she paid, I told her to consider the money spent was a life lesson. I then went and purchased the full Windows 8.1 from Office Depot, because I knew that one would be legit. So, instead of getting it for the $119, it was more like $159, because of the wasted $40. Yeah, I could have found the activation tool online and used the $40 one, but might as well have not tried to buy it. We WANT to be legit, because our conscience is clear.  Some do it because they justify it by saying they cannot afford it. Back when I could not afford it, I used Linux. Hated doing it, but I knew I was legit. I worked hard, saved money, and bought what I wanted later. Then again, I live in the USA, and legit copies can be had in a lot of places. Still have to be cautious even here, so I prefer to purchase from a reputable retailer and not a local shop. 
  • i agree that if you have the money and you are still pirating it is a crime. but for students and kids pirating is the only way they can afford it. MS knows that, and that's why they are now making it free, and also the more people using windows the more devs will make apps for their store, and that will benefit WP as well.
  • @Avik Biswas: Your logic fails in this case. If you are a "kid" or a "student" then your parents are legally responsible and they would be the ones held liable. If you are in need of an OS for your computer, then your parents should be making sure that you get a proper OS for your needs. If you're "upgrading" your computer without your parents permission, then #1: should have gotten parents permission first and #2: you become a thief responsible for your own actions. No, kids can't afford it if they don't have jobs. That's why parents are responsible to provide for the children. If the parent says you can't have it and you do it anyway, then you are still stealing. Pirating is not a way to afford something, it is a way to steal something. 
  • yes i am aware that pirating is stealing, but sometime stealing is the only way. and besides laws are created to be broken. ;)
  • @rockstarzzz "Pirates, don't buy anything. Ever." - I was a pirate for many, many years during my XP days because I couldn't afford to buy the OS. But bought Windows 7 later because I could already afford it. I'm sure I'm not the only one so your generalization is a lie.
  • Yes i understand that but there are lot more non-pirated copies sold too. Your 2nd point makes sense about user base increase. And yes devs will develop but pirating people will still pirate the software or apps. Only thing is the MS services but i am not sure they earn enough from the Services alone. I am not sure but I think MS earns mostly from selling windows to Companies(which is not free). And by giving windows 10 for free will secure Windows place in future. I mean If we(students or kids) use windows our entire life(cuz macs are too expensive and Chromebooks too crap) we would like same OS in work envoirnment when we get jobs. But would that be enough for MS?   EDIT It wont be free forever i guess and if someone buy a computer after the free upgrade time, he would have 1) Windows 10 preinstalled 2) To buy windows 10 3) Will have to pirate windows 10. So is this move in long term?  
  • Actually, the largest source of Microsoft's income comes from 2 areas. First, sales and/or subscriptions of Office to Enterprise/Corporate and second, Windows preinstalled on PCs. Sales of general consumer Windows and other software, as well as sales of hardware are actually a small part of Microsoft's profits. 
  • It's brilliant! AND it ensures customers have up-to-date software! I'm impressed
  • $ saved by not having to wasting resources on having to patch XX # of different OS. Win8 has already been sent to the recycle bin, but they are still having to patch it. Just my opinion.
  • Excellent point! MS is trying to get to the point where they are only patching/updating ONE OS instead of many. With XBox, IoT, phones, tablets, PCs, HoloLens, etc., only need to patch ONE core OS for them all. No more "XBox OS team" + "Windows OS Team" + "Phone OS Team", as these can be merged. More time spent on making things better, hopefully on turning more services to the global market.
  • Could anyone help please. I don't understand about the free upgrade. Do you get to keep the software after the year is up? Or do you only get it free for the year and then have to pay to continue using it?
  • Was that your defination of "Free" or MS?
  • Yes you get to keep it. It's free to upgrade within the first year, after the first year has expired anyone who hasn't already upgraded will have to pay.
  • How would Microsoft get the payment after a year? Billing or would it send someone at your home for accepting payment.
  • No extra pay FOREVER as Chinese media says
  • No its discount period for one year , buy for free for one year , after that pay full price
  • It's free to upgrade if you do it within a year. After that, if u haven't, u most likely need to pay to upgrade...
  • It will be free for limited time. If you get it, you will keep it forever.
  • But when we're gonna take it, that is the question... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • As soon as it is available, everyone will have it for free.
  • So if I have to do a clean install after the year, say new HDD will I then have to pay for Windows 10, or will it still be free due to my existing Windows 8 license key being known to have upgraded. If it's pay after the year even though you've upgraded for free during the free year then it'll suck, unless they'll also provide an iso so you can then upgrade for free when you need to do a clean install?
  • Since Microsoft is allowing the non genuine windows users to upgrade, I'm pretty sure they will have way to this situation
  • It would be nice if for fresh install or future updates - everyone with genuine keys and genuine upgrades, get free updates and free re-installs but the pirates have to shell out money to keep using it or getting udpates because they don't have a genuine install. That makes a paying customer - more worthy customer.
  • Well, as far as I know there is a little "make recovery disk" button in windows recovery settings. So, you are entitled to have it localy. ;)
  • If u upgrade ur OS within a year, it's free. After that u need to pay to upgrade
  • Sounds legit... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Yeah!
  • Awesome News!
     
  • Yeah, that is gonna be awesome move.
  • Thats what I wanted to know. :DD Thanks MS !
  • China was planning on creating their own OS and dumping XP and Windows entirely. With high quality, inexpensive PCs and tablets and phones freezing out knock offs and tossing out free upgrades, sounds like MS is doing an end run around others.
  • Desperate ,
  • With being leader in pc market share, why does MSFT has to be?
  • Because there's more to the world these days than desktop.
  • but we are talking about desktops... this doesn't apply to phones since phones don't run Windows that need a CD key or activation. so please use your brain next time, we are talking about WINDOWS 10 desktop. not "more, world desktop these days" ignorance.
  • now that's a great move... you go MS
  • Wooooooooow! That's Frickin awesome !
    This is a long term thing, the market share will increase significantly & the Windows Store could bring in some serious revenue & become another Billion-Dollar business for Microsoft.
    Hat's off to Microsoft, that's brilliant
  • wats thisclause abt first year free?any idea anyone.will they charge after that?  
  • http://www.davescomputertips.com/windows-10-upgrade-pricing-clearing-up-...
  • Free if you upgrade within first year and yours forever. After the year is up a charge will occur to upgrade.
  • Lenovo has committed has committed.
    Typo, Harish...
  • Thought I was the only one who seen that typo.
  • Forgot I added a link in there. Fixed now.
  • Even with this, i would still prefer to buy an orginal OS..
    @Harish the 2nd last para has committed *twice* some mistake :P
  • Microsoft is on fiyah today!
  • Wow
  • MS slowly becomes what Android (the openness aspect) should have been in 2015. Seeing desktop W10 becoming better and better after every build, unifing WP, Xbox, tablets and PCs and on top of all that giving the OS completely free EVEN if you have pirated Windows version, now I clearly see that the $ in M$ is not relevant anymore! Long live MS :P
  • Historic move.
  • It's free end of story, once you have it you have it, its yours. No paying after a year etc. YOURS
  • The daddy is back in business Satya Nadella rocks
  • Can we even update to windows 10 from pirated windows 7
  • Yes.
  • Wow, just wow. This is big news, roll on MS
  • Check this link to clear ur confusion.
    http://www.davescomputertips.com/windows-10-upgrade-pricing-clearing-up-...
  • Microsoft is being too generous here
    I smell something fishy :/ Windows 10 for Phone I'm looking at you
  • whaaat!!!?? it sounds like "piracy" is fine to microsoft. - sorry if my english is bad.
  • They like it cuz by that way their os became more famous around the world...+they definitely know the number of the pirated versions and who has a pirated version of Windows...but they're not gonna do anything, since it brings money to them... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • This is MADNESS!     All Heil Microsoft!
  • If the pirated version is patched and shows as genuine anyway, surely it wouldn't make any difference? If they have say 8.1 then they would get it irrespective of this.
  • "You get windows 10 & you get windows 10, everyone one gets windows 10 for FREE"
  • Oprahbees.gif
  • Is this just for China?
  • It's for ALL THE WORLD.... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Hope so that update to pirated version is for whole world(as in the article it was talking about China only).......Hope my pirated version gets the update..........................By the way anybody know how to check whether you have a pirated version or legit?
  • I wouldn't get my hopes up. But I hope it'll be worldwide.
  • Get your hopes up. According to: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/03/18/us-microsoft-china-idUSKBN0ME06A20150318 The article quotes Terry Myerson:
    "We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10," he said in a telephone interview with Reuters. 
  • Based on the wording, every PC should be getting it. "(Reuters) - Microsoft Corp is making its biggest push into the heavily pirated Chinese consumer computing market this summer by offering free upgrades to Windows 10 to all Windows users, regardless of whether they are running genuine copies of the software. The move..."
  • yes , thats confusing because he have montioned "china" and "every PC"  
  • No Fillipines as well .... o.O
  • This is a punch to the face of everyone who cracks and uploads hacked versions of windows to torrent sites. LOL
  • Well yeah, they will be redundant for the first 12 months. If there aren't any laggards then they will pretty much out of a job :P.
  • Satya is the man will be remembered in history of technology , I think is beyond stive
  • Nah
  • Can we run old and third party softwares(like mp3tag) in windows 10?
  • Why not? I've been using it without any problem on W10 TP
  • Awesome! Windows 10 is a time ticking bomb that will explode on rival platforms.
  • Wow great
  • Now I'm definitely installing Windows 10 on my MacBook Air
  • Yet my genuine Windows XP is not going to get the love!?
  • Install a pirate version of Windows 7, and then it'll get it... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Haha
  • Lol
  • But how will Microsoft earn from software. I mean there may be still who will still not use Microsoft service but want the software bcoz its suitable to them running their own apps or just fir normal use. Then how will they earn firm such ppl?
  • Enterprise.... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • They also will earn revenue from the Windows Store.
  • Paid apps, In-app purchases, ads,....
  • Will they earn that much. I mean ad revenue today is hurting google too. Does it mean there will be pop ups adds everytime when we use the OS? I'm scared.
  • I guess it would be just like the current setup.
  • Well best make a clone of your hdd before upgrading then. At least then you have a plan b. That's what I'm going to be doing.
  • I own both a genuine & non genuine versions of Windows, so that balances everything right? I'm not a pirate right
  • It's like giving Windows 10 for free
  • Updating a pirated 7/8 to Windows 10 will be free, I'm sure. However, that doesn't mean Microsoft won't keep on "reminding" you after that to register your product (for a price), and slash some Windows 10 features until you do. :P
  • Amen to that! I want them to do that. I want the pirates to be bogged down with Viagra ads till they register the product and bloody pay for it! Yes, I am burnt by this because I've given Microsoft plenty of money. Surely don't want pirates to be in the same boat as me.
  • Think of it as amnesty. Not always a popular thing (depending on what it is for), especially for those who have done things the right way, but this is probably the best move if they want to finally gain market share in China in mobile. Right now, it is next to nothing. With this and the Windows 10 ROM for phones, along with support from key Chinese partners, there is no reason why Windows 10 won't be a success. It all comes down to the user base. Developers will no longer have the excuse that the market share is too low.
  • Even Windows 8 (not activated) was fully functional for an indefinite period. It just didn't allow to change some aspects of the Metro UI.
  • It's Microsoft, after all. They might not be as money-grubbing as Apple, but they don't give things out for free either. There's always a catch. Windows 8 is very online-oriented, and there's no reason for Windows 10 to be any less, which means Microsoft would easily be able to discover cracked versions of their OS, and find ways to force you to go legit, or find yourself using an OS that will only be Windows 10 by name. :P
  • Yep.I hope they do that but I also think that when buying a new genuine copy of Windows it's quite expensive at least where I'm from.
  • People will just find workarounds for that you know
  • Its a trap!
  • Of course it is :P.
  • from the source news from  reuters it seemed to be China only. Why do you believe it is not China specific?
  • The article from Reuters quotes Terry Myerson:
    "We are upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10," he said in a telephone interview with Reuters. 
    That's ALL PCs running 7, 8.1, whether genuine or not. ALL, not just China.
  • Holy shit... MS awesome job.now let me read the article
  • I think this is a bold move. I'm guessing the Windows Store is projected to generate massive amounts. Personally I can't for the games on it. Cross buy for Xbox/PC is going to be great :)
  • what's this free for the "first year" thing i keep seeing?
  • Example: Say Windows 10 released on 1st August 2015. If you upgrade you genuine or pirated copy of Windows 7, 8 or 8.1 by midnight 31st July 2016, its free. After that, it is going to cost you 2 kidneys and part of your liver.
  • i hope you are right :) - thats good then, i kept reading it as you get the first year free, but after 12mnths use, there will be some kind of charge, like a subscription model or something, thanks for replying!
  • 12 months use of kidney and liver. §
  • Wen in China? Seriously, why is China such a big deal?
  • The most populated country? The maximum potential to get more customers? Should I keep going?
  • If you don't mind. You haven't quite been arrogant enough.
  • Good points.
  • Good job Microsoft!
  • Now no one have any excuse not upgrade well done Microsoft
  • We have to thank the Chinese people hahaha!
  • Don't get me wrong, it is a good move, but aren't the majority of the pirated versions of Windows still XP? This will be an incentive to pirate Windows 7 to get the upgrade and become legit, although I know Windows 7 is harder to pirate. There will probably be tons of machine that still can't upgrade due to specs.
  • Xp,vista,win7, tons of pirated Os. Theyre all easy..
  • I've been running 8.x for months.
  • Pirated?
  • Yeah, everybody does that here. Though I would pay if I had the money.
  • XP activation is opened up so much now that you can practically type in a random product key and it'll work!  Not literally of course, but I bet that a good share of pirated Windows are XP. Although, if theoretically speaking someone actually did type in a random product key and it works, is it pirated? And no, I have not done that!
  • Sounds like your speaking from experience :P.
  • Nope! But since XP has been officially unsupported, I do know from experience that it's easier to activate. Before, if I reinstalled XP on a machine using the same product key on the sticker, I almost always had to use phone activation to complete activation. Not anymore. I believe in some cases a product key from a different XP version will work (activate XP Home with an XP Pro key).
  • I agree to this move by eliminating the rest of pirated pc's. By this, in the near future, people has no reason not to buy next version of OS or else they cannot go further and stay in win10.
  • That is EPIC
  • hmmmm.... What about the users who bought the legal version? Not fair to be honest. Probably more features to be provided to users who paid for Windows 8?
  • How is it not fair? It is not like your having to pay to upgrade... within the first year and pirates getting it Scott free.
  • I think it is a good move by MS. This will allow fast adoption of  Windows 10. They'll have more poeple using Windows store and MS will earn more.
  • Only in China or What ??? 
  • Awesome.. Wondered
  • Mine is Windows 7 Eternity
  • Good guy Microsoft
  • This summer! Windows 10! Coming to any computer near you!
  • Reall a good news for pirated users.  Yes I have a legit one....  Cheers!! 
  • Good moves today MS, Windows 10 is going to be revolutionary!!
  • A shame. But they can improve the stats this way.
  • OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG THIS IS BIG ! Windows 10 addopt rate will be above the clouds 
  • The more people that know,windows 10 is free the better because you will get people who are none the wiser being charged. The other week I came across someone selling laptops with Windows 10, but it was tech preview, he was shocked I asked him what version, & was it a stable version of the technical preview.
  • "he was shocked". He definitely knows nothing about tech.
  • Or most likely he was shocked that he got caught out :P.
  • Thank you Microsoft. I am really excited but why? Why did Microsoft do such a thing?
  • Will they still charge for a new install of Windows 10?
  • As it is they're running pirated copies of Windows from which there is no profit so why not let them update for free, at least some of them pirates would use the store and buy some apps from which Microsoft would gain profit, I think this must be what Microsoft 's thinking!
  • Hmm. Maybe your right.
  • This will be interesting. Windows for free so everybody gets it, that would be the latest windows on all systems....then there's almost same OS running on a mobile. I'd tell quite a few will be tempted to buy a windows mobile.
  • After 1st year they will charge €400
  • Now I love Microsoft. (My laptop didn't come with any OS)
  • This is completely unacceptable! I feel cheated as customer who has spent money on upgrading my Windows experience only to hear all the people who took the easy way n STEAL the OS are gonna get it free too that's UTTER NONSENSE.
  • I don't know if it's nonsense or not but its definitely unfair for who bought the original OS with hard earned money.
  • I understand how you feel really. I have spent many many 1,000 of bucks on Windows OS over the years. However time and change move forward. Games and other programs that are now apps used to cost over 50 bucks but now they can be had for a buck
  • How is it unacceptable? Your still getting Windows 10 for free, providing you upgrade within the first year. This a sound move as most of these pirated machines are never updated thus the perfect node / relay to spread viruses and other malware.
  • The OS is the doorway to everything... Makes sense to offer it free.
  • That's huge move!
  • To get rid of Windows pirated editions there is a smart move. IE6 is still on about 3% of computers there, so an upgrade will remove the outdated XP OS AND allow IE to finally die its course like it should. Awesome move!! :)
  • I afraid after first year, MS is going to switch for annual subscription based licensing like Autodesk. Just saying..
  • Not true. Autodesk does not have to be subscription if you don't want it.
  • I'm genuine . . . Uh I mean my windows is genuine.
  • Lol
  • Nice nice +me
  • Really interesting move... I moved totally to Linux due to all this anti-piracy strategy of microsoft. I was really feed-up having to activate windows. As I have good IT skills, I create value for Linux, compile for Linux, I install now servers using Linux. Finally I was "forced" to move to Linux and I have built my skills on Linux and not Windows. So I'm "destroying" Microsoft ecosystem - and the reason was that Microsoft don't want me "in" with this anti-piracy strategy. Now I move some of my "customers" that have virus problem, hard drives crashes to linux. On linux you have less virus, it's faster to install and you don't have to care about all these applications to be downloaded. If I add the fact that customers have to buy a new version of Windows (as most of the time they don't have a backup of the installation media)... they just accept to move to Linux. My "customers" are people that need to do simple things. Email, Simple Letters, Internet. They are happy with LibreOffice, Evolution, Firefox. With this move, I would probaby not "force" my customers to move to Linux. Even more if Microsoft fix the problem with installation of softwares and drivers! That is a pretty time intensive task on Windows. You need to download softwares, install them, and you easily spend a few hours. (I do perhaps 2-3 installation per year.) Interesting now :) Installing Office from Internet is terribly time insentive too (if you don't want period based licences.).
  • Well of course Microsoft doesn't want you pirating their software -_-
  • There are times with Microsoft makes great decisions and terrible decisions.  This is one of those times when they have made a great decision.  Well played.
  • Totally agree.
  • This is great for some people!
  • I bet windows 10 got a feature that blocks any pirated installations after windows 10.
  • Wonder if the same will go for ws12e whenever a w10 server sku comes out lol
  • Now that is pretty revolutionary! By getting those who are running pirated versions they exponentially increase the user base 10 fold :P.
  • up to I saw the bank draft four $9954, I be certain ...that...my neighbours mother was like realie receiving money in there spare time on their apple laptop.. there mums best friend started doing this less than 17 months and resently paid the morgage on there house and bought a top of the range Land Rover Defender. browse around this site ~*~*~*~*~*http://www.netcash99.com/~*~*~*~*~* ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
  • This is going to be massive. Not only is pirated windows can upgraded but its being push forward to a summer release in 190 countries. Micorosof is on the attack, they are out for blood. The train has a time of arrival and BEFORE THE holidays season. I would assume that we will have a high end windos 10 phone to be porud to have this chrismas as well. Anyway, I wondering how is Apple going to combat this. Because a shitty trade in rebate to go to Apple Iphone is no where near the massive potential of Windows 10 with the IoT with 25 billion device, GG Apple RIP oh yeah you to GOOGLE. Microsoft is comng for ya HEADS!!! 
  • Off with their heads
  • Free upgrade and all the works BUTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT for those whom do not know the ins/out of windows you should understand now that Win 10 is the foundation for Office 365. MS has not released info around it yet but we in the tech world believe that MS will eventually charge a monthly or yearly fee to use MS Office 365 & Windows. I wouldn't be shocked to see it announced 8 to 14 months after the public release so before you guys/gals switch and move everything over to it you should always think "there is a catch". The corporate run world today doesn't give you something for nothing and you are considered a "sucker" to believe it. They are simply pitching this to get more people on Win 10 to show initial numbers for marketing / sales so when they present those numbers to the board it will help them decide on the Office 365 move.  Tested Win 10 and everything looks much improved over 8.1 but I wouldn't pay monthly or annually to use it when i have Win 7, Win XP, Win 8 and Win 8.1 full no fees. They cannot stop Win 7 support for a very long time due to business needs just like Win XP and businessess will not move to Win 10 until its been on the market for 2 to 5 years due to security concerns. Just my 2 cents   
  • You do know that Office 365 is already a yearly purchase but there is still Office that is not yearly purchase. Two different flavours. Two different usages. I have both in my office. I use the 365 method on rented machines and full Office on owned machines.
  • Yes, I have tons of experience and heaches with O365 consumer and business. I beleive Office 2013 is the last version you will get full as a consumer but business users will continue to have access to full release through the EA agreement. 
  • That has already been confirmed to not be the case. This entire comment is based on FUD.
  • Omg, yes, yes yes ! If such thing happens, nearly 10 PC's around me will be upgraded to windows 10 ^^
  • 10 PC's? Better have 10 people and addresses for those PC's or be ready to experience disappointment as MS will not permit you to upgrade 10 PC's unless you buy it. Win 10 is a free upgrade to existing windows and will be only permitted on that one machine but i beleive a household is permitted up to 4. Business users will be able to get Win 10 through your EA agreement only and not the App Store just like it was with Win 8 to 8.1
  • Nope. Terry Myerson already confirmed that not to be the case.
  • http://forums.windowscentral.com/attachments/windows-central-news-discussion/99950d1426684973-good-guy-ms.jpg
  • Linux is great except when you need to use commercial software. CAD in Linux sucks for example. So does open office. There are compatibility issues. Also not everyone is fluent geek. But it has its place.
  • It surely has its place... for normal home usage.....Linux is best am using it since past 2 years and believe me I am pretty much satisfied, but its on dual boot with win 7. Proprietary software are the only thing that is holding linux back
  • Also don't forget the complexity of commands
  • One of the reasons I didn't reinstall it after it crashed
  • Yes, there are commands and to some extent you can avoid them. however linux community is way more than helpful, you can just copy and paste all the commands that are not know to you. And stability is the USP of linux that is why it is used in all crucial usages. 
  • What a good new for me. But i uninstalled windows 7 to experience win 10 TP so can i update to RTM version as normal?
  • If you have a WinXP machine that you would like to upgrade to Win10, this is the path to take. Get a pirated version of Win7 :D
  • That is amazing. This solves a lot of my friend's problems. Not me though, I am 100% genuine.
  • Good idea to get everyone they can on Windows 10. It will get people off old versions of windows, so hopefully developers will write more universal apps, which benefits all 10 devices.
  • I've already done it... ;)... Haha
  • Its not a company, Its do service to people, LOL!
  • So... There will be no more - you could be victim of software falsification. There will be no reasons to watch presentations.
  • Such Amaze by MS, Much Impressed
  • What no form to snitch on the distributor of said source where the copy of windows was obtained
  • Finally it pays to pirate  LOL  
  • Indeed, pirate for life son. Though when I get mu credit card I plan to buy most of the software/services I pirated. And then pirate some more
  • Why not just hand out Keys on their website and the ISO download ? It would be easier...
  • Cant any of you sheople even comprehend what you read? By giving away Windows 10 for free, at least for the first year, Microsoft is deviating from its regular sales model for the first time. Sounds to me like you will be renting your OS, every year you get to pay them to keep it running/unlocked.  Make the switch to free OS linux flavor of your choice.  M$ is putting itself out of business, fool$z.
  • That's already been confirmed to not be true. This site has even reported on it. The upgrade offer will be for the first year. If you upgrade within the first year, there will be no additional charges. Dumbass.
  • Get your facts straight before commenting
  • This is serious
  • Amazing. Only MS can do such type of thing. I use pirated windows 8.1 on my PC because I use it rarely. I use my windows phone regularly.
  • so they basically offer the OS for free to ensure their market share and ecosystem , and then they can make money through services tier to te OS, just like what google did.
  • Awesome
  • Wow.. that's Awesome....
  • This might be great news for ones with pirated Windows and Windows 10 might even take a big chunk out of 7 and 8, but this will also push people towards installing a pirated version and then upgrading. If they are thinking of making money through other services, they should simply release free a W10 ISO, which activates for free only within one year of release. There is gotta be some catch here, I am thinking they might ask the user to pay to login through MS account. That way, a pirated version's user's features remain limited but 10 still lands on a large number of PCs.
  • That is big news.  Microsoft is telling everyone with a pirated copy, we know you exist, no worries you can upgrade for Free, we have sympathy for you.
  • They totally ripped this idea off ENCOM.
  • All pirated to genuine ? Ugh.. Did I waste money to buy genuine OS.
  • So pirates get windows 10. ... but early adopters of surface rt don't?
  • Will they upgrade from Windows Vista too??
  • Holy F***ING S*** Are You F***ing kidding me i take back every bad thing i said about windows almost
  • Chinese SKU only lol
  • Wow that is absolutely incredible. I run pirated versions on like 3 pcs
  • Windows 10
    The next big thing
  • W w w what
  • Ah, too bad my Windows Phone 7.8 can't upgrade to Windows 10 mobile...
  • Cyprus. Normally most pc's come with preinstalled genuine os' right? Not in Cyprus, they always install pirated copies and when you ask them to install a genuine one, they always charge you 50-100 dollars more, even if it says "comes with genuine software" on the computer.
  • WOw year of the Linux desktop! /s
  • I don't think this is as big a deal as people are making it out to be. The majority of pirated versions of Windows will be XP and enterprise SKUs of Windows 7 - neither of which qualify for the free upgrade. Only consumer editions of Windows 7 and 8/8.1 qualify and as they require individual activation they are much less likely to have been pirated. I doubt that even TechNet and MSDN versions qualify as they aren't consumer SKUs.
  • WOW! That's all I can say. WOW! This is definitely a shift in attitude at Microsoft.
  • Hmm nice, but does this only applied in China only or any countries such as Indonesia? But is it only first year? What a bummer, well, it's good anyway, thanks Obama
  • I would say, this is very risky for Microsoft. They are allowing any PC to be upgraded to Windows 10, not just Windows 7 and 8.1. Because it you have an older version, all you have to do is install an evaluation of 8.1 and proceed to upgrade. To the people debating on piracy, Microsoft has a part to control that too. It would have helped if they made it MANDATORY for OEMs to provide a full Windows installation disc. Here in India, when your installation gets broken, you take it to a computer repair shop, who will then install a Volume license edition, so there you have it: A pirated version. Of course, you could install it if you had your product key, but in the XP days, where would you get the installation media? So, piracy. And then, even now many people do not have enough knowledge to repair Windows themselves. The ones at computer repair shops are idiots as well, all they know its hope to install Windows and drivers. So they will reinstall Windows, even if all you need to do is a registry fix for some issue. Of course, Microsoft could have controlled piracy to a huge extent, by building in even stricter validation checks. Pushing software updates to counter software that remove the valuation components. So, when everyone gets problems after pirated versions being installed, no one would buy it. Here in India, asking someone to pay ₹5000 to buy Office is a joke, when you have people installing the pirated version for mere ₹100-200 for those who do not download it via torrents.
    Naturally, no one would get pirated software or Microsoft frustrates the hell out of them by prompts, cutting down functionality etc. But Microsoft seemed to have lost interest in the battle after Windows 7
  • On upadating to windows 10 ...can we change from 32bit...to 64bit...?
  • 32bit and 64 bit, depends upon your hardware. if your processor is 64 bit you should use 64 bit OS to harness its capabilities ( but you can install a 32 bit windows too) however if you have 32 bit processor you have no choice but to use 32bit version of OS.
  • You can't change from 32 > 64, or vice versa without reinstalling.
  • What is difference between 32 & 64 bit
  • Mostly availability of memory. 32 bit can only access 3.5gb of ram. If you have more, it is being wasted. 64 bit is also supposed to be faster, but I don't believe it is noticable. I also believe 64 bit will take up more space, but I'm not sure about that.
  • Let me guess vista user or w7 netbook user?
  • W10 Technical Preview will become registered too?
  • Looks like time to take back my "Holy Fuck" comment.
  • Those makes more sense. Hopefully, there will be an easy way to obtain the license after the upgrade. Also, the version of Windows 7 that I got from my son though his school will update with a valid license too.
  • Updated version: That was expected.
  • +1520
  • His is an MSDN version.
  • Looks like crime doesn't pay after all.
  • Makes more sense now.. Thanks for the update
  • WTF? I paid for my license 8.1 anf now will be upgradable for free to 10 just for a year? WTF? What's the point? This is ripoff MS!!!!
  • I think you are misunderstanding. If you upgrade with in first year it is free. (forever).. an I missing something?
  • You are correct. When Windows 8 launched, the upgrade sku was dirt cheap for the first year. I don't remember Microsoft asking for the rest of the money afterwards.
  • Minus any cost for them sending backup media(which is alot easier then decrypting esd files for those who like to customize their install oob or for wds installs)
  • I think upgrade license will lasts only for a year than you'll need to buy a license for further use.
  • Wrong. You get it in the first year, it's yours to keep forever.
  • Its the same concept when they sell win8 for 39$ promo. after then you have to pay for regular price.
  • Na
  • If you upgrade within the first year of release, you will have it free forever. They wont charge you anything. However, if you upgrade after the one year "grace period" you will be charged for the new copy of Windows.
  • I think Windows 10 free only for basic users (only OS). If your existing OS is genuine it will update to windows 10 Pro. If you pay extra money for windows 10, you get other extra features like free office subscription and 100gb OneDrive storage. and Xbox gold pass.
  • Where did you get this from? I know they will be giving office and storage to OEMs on some devices. I've never heard anything about xbox gold being free. There also weren;t any reports of teh free versionbeing different from the paid version. They will have different skus and I'm sure there will be a paid enterprise sku with features a regular user will never need.
  • That answers my doubts. So I did not waste my money to buy genuine OS. Thanks for the update.
  • Microsoft will not give a licensed Windows 10 upgrade to previously unlicensed users? They can keep their damn billion dollar data harvesting Windows 10 then, I thought they were offering amnesty for the sake of creating a future of licensed users, by apparently not, I thought they were getting smarter and learned from android's success, but clearly they are still stuck in their 1980s ways. And worse now, Digging out the pockets of their customers to buy, no license the use of a method for them to harvest and profit from our activities. Look I am relatively fine with it, I have nothing to hide, but now this is just abusive.
    And for all of you who think I am a "pirator" know this, I bought a $1200 surface pro 2 and accessories from best buy a after mwc but a week before the sp3 announcement and if that wasn't bad enough the bloody OS is telling me it's not registered and although very professional neither best buy nor Microsoft could help. Plus a have a $1000 HP envy 17 with the exact same issue, and here I was thinking that finally Microsoft was doing something to wipe the slate and move forward with a mutually beneficial clean slate. Damn, who is the criminal here? They are making you pay for the opportunity to borrow their OS which they in turn will use to make billions more selling and using what they leech out of your life. Maybe its time we all go the way of the Brazilian government, customized Linux open source and then Microsoft can come kiss up to us on laptops and desktops as they are forced to do on the mobile platforms.
  • Nothing you say can be taken seriously after I read "their billion dollar data harvesting Windows 10"
  • Google is the billion dollar data harvester. That's why they give away the software for free. Microsoft doesn't sell user data to advertisers. If they started to do that, the enterprise customers would abandon ship. They do collect user data, but they don't resell it. They use it for product enhancement, tracking malware, etc. If they are selling users data for billions, there should be a huge line on the financials statements showing it. The users agreement would also reflect that they have a right to provide user data to 3rd parties. The slate wouldn't be wiped clean. The cheaters would get what they want and the honest people would feel like fools for paying for the product. Simple fact is that if you want to have software without giving up all your privacy, you have to pay for that software. The free stuff always comes with the catch that your information will be collected and you will get a ton of advertising. If you want to use linus, go ahead. I won't be following in your footsteps.   2 computers that can't be authenticated? What are you doing with them? Are you deleting system files?  There should be windows serial number that came with the computers and you should be able to reinstall using them. If you lost them, that is on you.   
  • If they give amnesty to every person stealing their software, why would anyone buy it in the future? Setting a precedent of no penalty for something like this will encourage more abuse.
  • You're only angry because the products that you bought don't have licensed version of Windows. Take them to a Microsoft store, I'm sure you could work something out with them.
    Microsoft is doing the right thing here. If they gave pirates genuine windows, they would be sending a message to pirates that it's ok to crack Windows. Imagine the fury of people who always paid for genuine versions !
    Also I really don't understand why you're so upset about them harvesting data. Google also does it, and AFAIK you can stop the collection of your data by going to your MS account settings on their website. If you were referring to them collecting data during the tech preview, well, common sense should tell you that it's a part of their development process and they're using it as feedback.
  • The Surface recovery images with genuine are on the Microsoft site and when loaded to your surface will check your serial and that device will be good again. The hp you'll need to buy the recovery disk or use the built in recovery image if it's still intact.
  • Are you retarded guys? Free upgrade who'll last only one year than you'll need to buy a license!!!
  • No, you don't need to pay anything after the first year.
  • Only thing I can think they'll charge you for is backup install media(better then esd's anyday)
  • If you think that you need to pay after the first year, then you're the retarded one.
  • I think 1 year free update means you have a chance to update to Windows 10 during the 365 days after the official release for free, if you update after 365 days from the official release you would have to pay.
  • "We announced that a free upgrade for Windows 10 will be made available to customers running Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows Phone 8.1 who upgrade in the first year after launch.* 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 cost." "*Hardware and software requirements apply. No additional charge. Feature availability may vary by device. Some editions excluded. More details at http://www.windows.com." http://blogs.windows.com/bloggingwindows/2015/01/21/the-next-generation-... Must one say any more?...
  • No license required
  • It has stated over and over that the first year is a promotional period to update for free. It is not a one year license. It is a perpetual license. Microsoft has never announced that they are going with a subscription model for windows. You won't have to buy a license after one year. Do some research and stop spreading FUD.
  • Windows 10 free for the whole world would sure guarantee Bing search and Modern APP usage hitting the top. I love Windows 10 so far specially after today's Preview update, everything just seems exactly how I want I to be.
  • No it doesn't. MSN is the default home page and bing is the default search on PC. There are still a billion PCs out there. It doesn't stop people from going to google to search. Matter of fact, many people don't realize they can search from the address bar. They actually go to google.com to search.
  • I dont get it. Why leave the windows 10 un licensed, it would make sense to license Windows to have everyone on the same page. I really dont understand why Microsoft do things like this. Its like when they made Windows 8 and windows RT.. I think Microsoft is doing the right thing trying to get people to be on Windows' 10 by giving it away the first year, so why not just register every copy. Even if its an upgrade from a cracked copy. If your going to allow it, the make it complete. Lets move forward with out hiccups.
  • "so why not just register every copy" Um... Because it was stolen?
  • "why leave Windows 10 unlicensed" Because it was stolen
  • Now Windows has to deal with Chinese.
  • News leaked that modern combat 5 is going to free soon :D
  • Yes its great
  • Hmm, I guess this to tell people that there is no point going and torrenting a copy of Windows in the hopes the update will automatically validate it as a genuine copy.
  • I foresee win10 will become a freemium OS. Want to change desktop wallpaper? Pay USD 0.99. Access control panel? USD 1.99.
  • Microsoft can't really make up their mind. No wonder Apple is  killing them. 
  • In case it will be a clean install on non-licenced machines, then removing possible malware is a great thing for the internet, I would think.
  • How will they earn form the pirated ppl who will upgrade to windows 10. Monitizing later will also result them to go back to windows 7. I think Microsoft mainly wants the enterprise to upgrade bcoz those the ppl where money will mainly come from. Do u think monitizing the store later will help Microsoft end windows piracy or at least reduce to a major extent??
  • "Awesome" says the pirate.
  • Whew!  I was hoping they fixed their earlier statement.  Pirates should NOT be given a free ride.
  • Awesome!!! Says the pirate
  • Not an historic move after all.
  • Haha they hears me!!! Give stealers free but not the people who purchased surface rt on day one!
  • Arrrggghh me hearties! Gonna drink run and wait for the release arrrrrrggh!
  • So would a Licensed windows 7 basic is eligible for windows 10 upgrade & how to download it when windows 10 becomes official?
  • Microsoft just lost a lot of good PR with this move
  • And yet...I can't upgrade my RT tablet
  • So if you have a loader for 7 that passes genuine validation (and many do), then its possible the upgrade will be genuine?
  • Its because Chinese people at large.....have no integrity......lol
  • They want to spy on everyone...so making it free to pirated versions will bring them aboard too.....lol
  • LOL. So they let pirated users upgrade for free, but it still won't be Genuine so what would the point be? They might as well just wait and grab another pirated copy to install.
  • Wow Nice!
  • Give the unlicenced people Windows 10 with Bing for free
  • They did the same thing with windows 8 you could upgrade a non genuine version with a cheaper upgrade license and then it became genuine
  • "We have always been committed to ensuring that customers have the best Windows experience possible. With Windows 10, although non-Genuine PCs may be able to upgrade to Windows 10, the upgrade will not change the genuine state of the license. Non-Genuine Windows is not published by Microsoft. It is not properly licensed, or supported by Microsoft or a trusted partner. If a device was considered non-genuine or mis-licensed prior to the upgrade, that device will continue to be considered non-genuine or mis-licensed after the upgrade."
    What does this mean? Will the non licensed win 10 still work just like the genuine one? or is there some catch?
  • more indian need this
  • I hope that people who have pirated software will take advantage of this because folks this is a real cool deal that will last for only ONE YEAR then it's give up the Money ir ELSE. I wonder if us folks who only have the tech preview version on their devices can get the free update to Windows 10 when it RTM's which I think will occur at the end of JULY so Microsoft's OEM partners can test it on all their New Windows 10 Desktop, Laptop and Tablet/Tablet hybrid computers and other devices to sell to the September 2015 back to school crowd. 
  • Actually, pretty good business plan. For pirated versions, I wouldn't use the blackout feature to curb piracy, I'd just make all data on the pirated OS available to MS for advertising potential. Google-esque for sure, but it may just work. You could escape the data loss by buying genuine Windows, and people couldn't sue because pirated OS violates MS ToS.
  • So many people are complaining that they paid for their genine copies of win7 & win8, and they don't think it's fair that pirated copies are getting upgraded free too.  If you read through it: "If a device was considered non-genuine or mis-licensed prior to the upgrade, that device will continue to be considered non-genuine or mis-licensed after the upgrade" So yes, they will have it free, but will it be supported in the same way a genuine upgrade will?  Will they have to then pay for a license to get updates and support?  If so, have they decided on a price point yet?
  • I think everyone is missing the part where they say copies will remained unlicensed. Meaning updating to Windows 10 from a bad copy of 7 will still label it as bad unlicensed. Therefore it will not let you run executables, install anything, shutdown every hour or less, annoy you to buy it.  The only people that get Win 10 truly for free are those that have legit 7 or 8.  Software is man made therefore it will be cracked eventually and pirates will get it. So this whole blog post about everyone getting it for free, its an obivious. Everyone can potentially get ity for free, whether you paid for previous OS or intend to wait for a crack version. Simple as that.  
  • Not accurate, good cracked versions of windows function in the same ways as regular windows. Only certain niche things don't function properly. Source: experience
  • WINDOWS 10 IS SKYNET!!!!
  • I don't understand why alot of you people are butthurt. Look at it from Microsoft point of view: They realize that other cheaper, or even free os are available. Most people who pirate microsoft can't afford to buy it anyways, so there isn't alot of money in "lost" sales. If they where to dedicate more resources to fight the pirated versions, who is going to end up paying for all those extra man hours and resources used? The buying consumer ofcourse.  So in conclusion, by letting the pirates run relativly free, it ends up being cheaper for all the people who bought it. Deal with it.
  • my windows 8.1 is pirated .. nd i am having genuine windows 7 home premium key ..can i install windows 10 iso file with that key ?? (india)
  • How do Windows Vista users upgrade to Windows 10?
  • is windows 10 upgrade only for microsoft mobiles i got nokia lumia 830 and each time i go for upgrade it keep showing :my phone is up to date but i got upgrade adviser and and it shows me latest upgrade win 10