Microsoft plans to release Windows 8.1 Preview on June 26th and Microsoft’s Michael Niehaus explains at TechEd 2013 that when the preview becomes available, current Windows 8 and Windows RT users will get a Windows Update notification. Then they will be able to read a brief description and processed with the installation if they agree to.
Now for those wondering how the upgrade works, let me just say that it’s a bit tricky, but here is what you need to know. When Windows 8.1 RTM (final version) becomes available, users will once again get a Windows Update notification. However, there are some important FAQs to consider. For those users who didn’t upgrade to the Preview version of the operating system will be able to upgrade to the final version of Windows 8.1 without losing any personal data, apps, and any accounts created in the OS. This is pretty straightforward process, you see the notification, head over to the Windows Store, confirm the update and wait until the process finish and everything will be OK (hopefully).
Users who opted to install Windows 8.1 Preview will be able to upgrade as well, BUT… apps will get lost during the upgrade, and I am talking about Metro-style apps and traditional desktop applications. Accounts, personal data, settings and personalization will be preserved, but again users will need to reinstall all the apps. Surface RT users on the other hand will only have to reinstall all modern apps, Office 2013 RT will also remain installed — you won’t have to reinstall this one.
So there you go, now knowing how the upgrade Windows 8.1 Preview to Windows 8.1 RTM will work, you can choose whether to try the new version on June 16th or wait for the final version, which will make things a lot easier.
Although there are some assurances about upgrading to the next version of Windows, you should anyways thinks on creating a full backup of your Windows 8 PC before proceeding. This time, you’ve been warned!
Source Mary Jo Foley