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You can still download Windows 10 for free – and that is because Windows 7 is dead



  Background to Windows 10

Microsoft encourages Windows 7 users to upgrade to Windows 10 before reaching the end of January 2020 support.

Support for Windows 7 is now officially over, which means that Microsoft wants holdouts to upgrade to Windows 1

0 for devices to work safely and smoothly. If you still have an older PC or laptop with Windows 7, you can buy the Windows 10 Home operating system on the Microsoft website for $ 139. But you don't necessarily have to pay the money: a free upgrade offer from Microsoft that technically ended 2016 still works.

When Windows 10 was first released in July 2015, Microsoft offered an unprecedented free upgrade offer for Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 users, good until July 2016. But in 2017, Ed Bott of CNET sister site ZDNet reported that the free upgrade tool was still functional. I tried it out in November 2019 and was able to upgrade a 2014 Dell OptiPlex 9020 desktop from Windows 7 Pro to Windows 10 Pro. From January 2020, readers are still sending me an e-mail and commenting below that it also worked for them.

Read more: 11 simple Windows 10 tricks that you didn't know yet

Windows 7 users who don't upgrade to the new version can no longer Microsoft & # 39; s security updates or fixes or technical support for problems, which increases your computer's risk of viruses and malware. Although Windows 10 users have experienced a number of bugs over the years, upgrading remains the best option to keep your computer safe analysts say.

Here's how you can get Windows 10 for free if you are currently using a licensed and activated copy of Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 Home or Pro:

1. Go to the Windows 10 download website.

2. Under Make Windows 10 installation media click on Download tool now and Run .

3. Select Upgrade this PC now assuming that this is the only PC that you are updating. (If you are upgrading for another machine, choose Create installation media for another PC and save the installation files.)

4. Follow the directions.

5. When the upgrade is complete, go to Settings Update & Security> Activation and you should see a digital license for Windows 10.

It should be noted that if you have a Windows 7 or 8 Home license, you can only upgrade to Windows 10 Home, while Windows 7 or 8 Pro can only be upgraded to Windows 10 Pro (the upgrade is not available for Windows Enterprise, other users may also experience blocks, depending on your machine). This upgrade using the media creation tool is not intended for the general consumer, but still works for many.

To get the best Windows 10 experience and take advantage of features such as logging in without a password via Windows Hello you want to buy a new Windows 10 PC (or a version released after July 2015) with all hardware upgrades. If you are a student or university faculty, you may also be able to download Windows 10 for free (search for your school's software offering here).

For more information, see Six security changes that all Windows 10 users need to perform and Windows 10 update: everything you need to know .


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Originally published last year.


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