How to upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 8.1 or Windows 7

Microsoft now lets Windows 8.x/7 users test Windows 10, and this guide will walk you through the steps to upgrade your system to latest preview of the new operating system.

Upgrading Windows 7 to Windows 10

Microsoft already confirmed that Windows 8.1 and Windows 7 customers will be able to upgrade free to Windows 10 once it launches later this year, presumably early this fall. However, if you’re a Windows 7 or 8.1 user, you don’t have to wait until the final version to test the new operating system.

With the release of Windows 10 January Technical Preview to the Windows Insider Program, Microsoft is now allowing Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users to upgrade to the latest build of Windows 10 via automatic update.

How to upgrade to Windows 10

Upgrading your current operating system version to Windows 10 is pretty simple, everything works as if you were installing an automatic update. Though, your computer needs to know you want to upgrade, and for this to happen, you need to register to the Windows Insider Program. Then you need to install the Windows 10 Preparation tool for Windows 8.1 or Windows 7. (You can also go to the download page and click “Start update now”.)

Windows 10 upgrade through the Windows Insider Program

Once you installed the preparation tool, which will require a restart, go to the Control Panel > Windows Update, and check for new updates. Now you should see the Upgrade to Windows 10 Technical Preview update.

The upgrade is big, almost 3GB in size, as such the download and installation may take a while, but everything will happen automatically. After the upgrade files download and the installation process begins, your computer will restart, and it will go through the out-of-the-box experience process, like when doing a clean installation using an ISO.

Through the upgrade process, your applications and settings will migrate over Windows 10 and everything should work as they worked before. Keep in mind that Windows 10 still under heavy development and it’s not a final product, as such bugs are expected.

Even though, the upgrade process is straightforward, things may not go as plan, as such make sure you backup your system prior moving to the Windows 10 January Technical Preview.