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Are You Ready for Windows 10?

Posting Date: 07/21/2015  |   Filed Under: Technology, Tips  |   No Comments
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Microsoft will be releasing their newest Operating System on July 29, 2015. Perhaps you have noticed a Windows 10 notification on your current system and wondered about it? Now what? What does it all mean and what should you do?

Microsoft announced that computers running Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 will be able to upgrade to Windows 10 after July 29. This upgrade is free, plus the offer is available over the next 12 months.  Users who are eligible will receive a system icon and popup on their screens.

Microsoft is moving to a “Windows as a Service” model with this latest release. This means that your new operating system will be updated regularly, plus you will never need to go through another major upgrade like this again. Windows 10 will be Microsoft’s last Operating System although this OS will continue to be upgraded and development will be ongoing.

Windows 10 Arrives on July 29, 2015

Immediately after July 29, 2015, users will receive notification regarding eligibility for the upgrade. However, the real question is should you upgrade? Many industry experts are very confident about the stability of Microsoft’s new operating system. Through Microsoft’s Windows Insider program, end-user testing has been unprecedented.  Feedback from a significant number of these professionals has already gone into the development of this product. With that said, none of this guarantees that your upgrade will go smoothly. Remember, all software upgrades come with a degree of risk.

Suggestions Regarding Windows 10

Our general recommendation is to initially hold off on this upgrade. We suggest that users wait to upgrade until there is a sufficient number of worldwide users testing the new OS. This is a sensible precaution so that any bugs that slipped through testing will be addressed.  There will be a consensus on performance after a few weeks of the initial upgrades. Remember, there’s no rush because the free upgrade offer will be available through July 29, 2016. Some of your applications or peripherals may not work properly with this upgrade. Software and drivers will need to be updated by many manufacturers to ensure their products are compatible with the new OS. For example, QuickBooks has been identified as a potential problem as Intuit does not have Windows 10 on their list of supported Operating Systems.

Windows 10 is also introducing an entirely new browser called Microsoft Edge, which replaces Internet Explorer.  This promises some challenges and compatibility issues with the web based applications you are already using. This is another reason to wait it out for several months before upgrading to the new OS.

Should You Upgrade to Windows 10 – Now or Later?

Windows 10 is considered to be a blend of the best of Windows 7’s look and the enhanced applications with the multi-device functionality from Windows 8.1.  Consider the following reasons for waiting to upgrade:

Better Performance:  Decidedly faster boot-up time while also offers better hardware acceleration. Plus a host of other tweaks means that the general navigation feels faster. Mobile device battery life lasts longer because the power management has also been improved.

File Management: Some of the most commonly used tools are utilized in finding and managing your files. Efficient file management is fundamental to any good operating system. A new Share ribbon now makes it much easier to move files between different apps. Tasks such as copying and moving are grouped into one window for easier file management. Transfer speed is shown in real time plus operations can also be paused, where previously they could only be cancelled.

Search Features:  Windows 10 greatly enhances Windows 7 search features. Useful search functions quickly look for matching programs and documents as you type. It also provides quick access to core features and chosen programs. It’s both effective and simple. Users can click on a search box that also separately displays Windows Store apps and a web search. Results are now presented in a more organized manner.

Sleek Design: If you were reluctant to move to Windows 8.1 because you didn’t like its look, then you may be very happy with the update. Windows 10 delivers flat windows and bold colors, but retains the old comfort of the Control Panel and Computer Management interfaces that still uses the old icons

Touchscreens and Tablets: Windows 10 really is a vast improvement over Windows 7, and this is especially true for operations on touchscreen devices. Windows 10 works smoothly across a range of devices, making it much easier to switch between a desktop, hybrid laptop and a tablet.

Cost: We don’t know the cost of a standalone copy of Windows 10, but the big news is that it is free when you upgrade from either Windows 8 or 7 during the first year of Windows 10’s availability. Remember, if you decide that Windows 10 really isn’t a good fit for you, you can always return to your previous version of Windows.

Give your local Geeks On Call office a call and request a consultation to evaluate your specific situation and how this upgrade will affect you.

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Lauren Davies

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