How to install Windows 10

Windows 10 launched on 29 July, with a free upgrade to the new operating system available to Windows 7 and 8.1 users.

The free update for qualifying Windows users is available until 29 July 2016, and those who take up Microsoft’s offer will receive the upgrade through Windows Update.

In South Africa, prices for the OS have emerged online, with the retail version Windows 10 Home costing around R1,700, while Windows 10 Pro is set to cost R3,200.

Downloading Windows 10

If you are planing on taking advantage of the free upgrade, you will first need to download the installer for it.

Those who reserved a free upgrade should automatically download the installer through Windows Update, and will be notified when they can begin the installation.

Users on Reddit have tried various tricks to jump the queue, with varying degrees of success reported.

Microsoft has also released ISO images of Windows 10 on its website. Here are the download links:

Warning: there have been reports from those who tried the Media Creation Tools that it can wipe out the 3GB-6GB installer for the Windows 10 upgrade that has downloaded in the background.

Upgrading to Windows 10

There are a few differences between upgrading from Windows 7 or 8.1, and performing a clean install of Windows 10 from a DVD or USB drive.

As indicated in the screenshots below, the early stages of the process differ, with free upgrade users beginning the installation from a prompt in Windows.

Once installed, the final configuration steps are largely the same.

Windows 10 install - Get Windows 10 notifications
Get Windows 10 notifications
Windows 10 install - Upgrade installation step 1
Windows 10 Upgrade installation step 1
Windows 10 install - Upgrade license terms
Windows 10 Upgrade licence terms
Windows 10 install - Upgrade ready to install
Windows 10 Upgrade ready to install
Windows 10 install - Upgrade choose what to keep
Windows 10 Upgrade choose what to keep

Clean install of Windows 10

When installing from a DVD or USB drive, you are prompted to choose between upgrading or installing a fresh copy of Windows 10.

If performing a clean install, you will be asked to select which hard drive you would like to install to.

One difference between upgrading and installing a new instance of Windows is that you will be prompted to sign into your Microsoft account at the end of a clean install.

Windows 10 install - From media
Windows 10 installing from external media
Windows 10 install - select type of installation
Windows 10 select type of installation
Windows 10 install - disk partitioning
Windows 10 installation — Disk partitioning
Windows 10 install - license terms
Windows 10 licence terms
Windows 10 install - sign into Microsoft account
Windows 10 clean install first boot — sign into Microsoft account
Windows 10 install - OneDrive settings
Windows 10 clean install first boot — OneDrive settings

Configuring Windows 10

After Windows is installed, you will be asked to select between using the express settings, or customising your configuration.

The screenshots below show you what to expect should you choose to customise your installation before launching Windows 10.

Windows 10 install - Configure system after first boot
Windows 10 — configure system after first boot
Windows 10 install - Custome configuration page 1
Windows 10 custom configuration page 1
Windows 10 install - Custom configuration page 2
Windows 10 custom configuration page 2

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Windows 10 – when you can upgrade, how long it will take

Windows 10 prices revealed

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How to install Windows 10