“I got an offer from Microsoft to download and upgrade my operating system to MS 10  for free.  They are sending the download (patch…is that what they call it) in about a week.  Is this a good idea?  Any downside?  Will I loose my contacts, favorites or files or will they all be jumbled up someplace?  Any impact on Word/PPT/Excel versions I have?”

I have a copy of Windows 10 operating on an older notebook PC (I was a part of the pre-release testing program.)  So now, I’m operating the production release and I highly recommend it.

I’m also an Office 365 Pro Plus subscriber and use the Office apps when gig’s require it.  For instance, I needed to work in MS Access to tweak a Data Base recently.  That app isn’t online, so I used the Office Suite installed on the Windows 10 deck (it was pre-release at the time) and everything went well.

I had some difficulty connecting to an older wireless printer / scanner, but that’s due to other issues on my WiFi Lan. Windows 10 was doing what it was supposed to.

I think you should install it.  And I would be very, very surprised if you had any difficulties with your data or your apps.

By the way: Office apps in the “Cloud” work surprisingly well. But they are limited to the “basics” — like Word and Excel, Outlook etc.

Google has lead the way, but MS is catching up with Enterprise-grade systems … and I’m a fan.

And don’t forget Apple Computer — their operating environment (or user experience, at least) scales across platforms. That means the same familiar navigation stokes are used on your PC / Tablet and Phone.

That’s a big pattern to notice.  I mean: that increasingly things are operating “in the Cloud.” All three big purveyors of software and equipment are competing for your business – bundles of gear and software that connect to the Cloud.

  • Google: Android & Google Apps — my favorite? Gmail and G+
  • Microsoft: Windows 10 and MS Office — for Enterprise Apps
  • Apple: OS-X and Apple Apps — Garage Band, hands down – but also, I love my iPhone.

Windows 10 BannerAs a professional, I keep a footprint in each realm, using the platforms, operating systems and software in various combinations.

My advice on the Windows 10 Free Upgrade?

“Go for it!” It’s a very generous offer, and it will set you up to be very well endowed in the computing realm for a big chunk of the next 10 years, at least.

In fact, among the circles I frequent — one of the big take-aways from this upgrade is extending the longevity of our equipment.  My notebook may not be a convertible (to tablet) but it’s perfectly serviceable — and familiar! It has serial ports that I need occasionally to connect to network gear and telecom equipment.  A trusty tool.  And I think this is what Windows 10 will be too — a trusty tool.

But be ware: depending on the speed and quality of your internet connection, you might need to have a whole day to get it done.  You’ll need to periodically check on your machine.  Starting with downloading a huge bunch of software. The process will operate on some stuff for a while and then repeat iteratively, various boot cycles — the machine may restart a number of times.

You won’t need to sit right there and stare at the machine, but you should check on it every hour or so during the process.

If you can, and you’re worried that MS won’t cover this adequately – Make an image of your system and copy it to a backup location.

For Windows 7 view the MS instructions here.

For Windows 8 view the CNet info to locate here.

And finally, backup your account access credentials. If you don’t use an online cache service for these already — try  Their service is free for the first 100 accounts you manage through them.

Have fun!  And PLEASE! Let me know when how it’s going. As always, I’m available for Q&A. I’d enjoy hearing about your experience quite a bit.

Thanks for asking!


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