Windows 10 Free Upgrade Ends July 29, 2016

Here’s the short version if you don’t want to keep reading:

  1. The free upgrade offer ends on July 29 and will not be extended.
  2. Any upgrades completed before that date will be valid for as long as the device lasts.
  3. There is a possibility that Microsoft will introduce some new upgrade offers after July 29, but don’t count on it.

If you have a computer running Windows 7 or 8, mark July 29 on your calendar. That’s the last day that upgrading your PC to Windows 10 will be free. Once the Windows 10 passes its one-year anniversary, Microsoft will start charging $119 to for you to move to Windows 10 Home or $199.99 to move to Windows 10 Pro. (We never recommend the home versions for Business).

Another important date to watch is October 31, 2016. That’s when OEM sales of new PCs with Windows 7 Professional officially end. That means the population of Windows 7 PCs will begin shrink as old PCs die and are replaced by newer models running Windows 10 (or aren’t replaced at all).

If you have been happy using Windows 7 or Windows 8, You might not be happy much longer, because Microsoft has announced Windows 10 will now start installing automatically on Windows 7 and Windows 8 PCs.  This has been happening to anyone who uses Windows 7 or Windows 8 with default Windows Update settings (the vast majority) will now see Windows 10 begin installing by itself.

Why should you update?

Windows 10 is safer. If you have an older model with Windows 7 or 8, you really should upgrade. Not keeping up with software updates can make any devices more vulnerable to hackers. If you don’t want to upgrade, be mindful of how much longer Microsoft will offer security updates for your operating system of choice.

Microsoft stopped issuing security updates for Windows XP in 2014, and it will abandon Windows Vista in 2017. It is going to end all support for Windows 7 in 2020, and Windows 8 in 2023. As of now, Microsoft said it plans to support Windows 10 through 2025.

What is the downside to updating?

Microsoft has taken away some freedoms of choice.  Windows 10 no longer lets you specify when to install windows updates.  It just does it. This can be very annoying when your system becomes sluggish during the day because it is downloading and installing updates. There are some technical ways to control this which we will publish at our website, but because it involves editing registry settings or changing group policy settings which can be risky if not done correctly, our support staff has been instruct not to make these changes.

A second potential risk occurs if you have older printers or faxes connected to your computers.  There is a possibility that these might not work after a Windows 10 update because manufacturer’s may have decided to not update the drivers for them.

Thirdly, the new browser shipped with Windows 10, Microsoft Edge, is annoying and invasive.  If you don’t turn off a bunch of default settings, it wants to track your “browsing experience” and report it to Microsoft.   Since that is none of their business, I switched to Firefox.

In summary, the choice to upgrade or not is up to you.  Complete Clinic Software will run as well in Windows 10 as it does in Windows 7 or Windows 8.   If you are having any problems running our software in Window 10, please be sure to call our Help Desk for assistance.  Chances are we can change a setting or two to remedy the issue.  Before installing a Windows 10 Upgrade, you should also review our Whitepaper on “Installing the Windows 10 Upgrade”.

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