How to get Windows cheap or even for free – Guide

Microsoft ended support for Windows 7 on January 14, 2020. And while there is no official channel to upgrade to Windows 10, there is one trick to get it. And that’s not illegal. Microsoft is allowing users to do this. See how.

Upgrade from Windows 7 to 10 for free

Before attempting the update, be sure to update all hardware drivers and BIOS or firmware on your PC. Also, remember that your current Windows 7 PC must have a valid and activated license. To try it, go to the Windows 10 download page. In the Media Creation section, download the Download Now tool button and run it. Accept the EULA. Then, when asked what to do, select “Update this PC now” and continue through the onscreen wizard instructions.

How to Still Get a Free Upgrade for Windows 10

According to some Microsoft Community Forum participants, Microsoft can forgive those who skipped the upgrade. Looks like you can get a second chance to upgrade to Windows 10 simply by contacting support. Plus, you can still qualify for a free Windows 10 upgrade if you use assistive technologies. Assistive technology users can be broadly defined as users with a specific disability or disability who use third-party software or hardware. There is no verification process for users who are eligible to upgrade assistive technologies. If you’re not interested in getting past any hurdles or support gaps, I’ve found you can upgrade without buying a license. You’re probably asking yourself, “Well, why didn’t you say that from the start?” Well I could, but I just wanted to provide all the options for users who want to go through the official channels. So are there any legal issues related to this? Microsoft said the free offer ended in July 2016. It looks like it was more of a formality or possibly a major marketing mess to create a sense of urgency. I decided to test this by restoring the HP Elitebooks factory Windows 7 image first. I also tried it on my HP desktop with Windows 8.0 (you read that right, Windows 8.0, not 8.1 or 8.1 with Update 1). During this experiment, the first thing I discovered is that your Windows 7 or Windows 8/8.1 license must be activated. If not, Windows 10 Setup will ask for a product key. You cannot use a Windows 7 or Windows 8 key if you are upgrading. However, what you can do is activate it using a Windows 7 or Windows 8 key after installation is complete; if you choose to perform a clean install. If enabled, setup will not prompt you. That’s it, you can upgrade without any additional hurdles. There, my system was upgraded from Windows 7 to Windows 10 in 2017 for free.

What if my system is not activated?

If your Windows 7 or Windows 8 license is not activated and you are not interested in purchasing a license, your options are limited. However, you have a few options. Microsoft offers a 90-day trial version of its Windows 10 Enterprise edition. Windows 10 Enterprise is typically distributed under Microsoft’s volume license program to large organizations that mass-deploy Windows 10. It’s a fullfeatured edition of the operating system, but in this case it’s actually a trial version of the software. Users must register before downloading and installing the software. This option is perfect for those users who are running Windows Vista or never had an original license to begin with. A workaround that users can use to extend their use of the Windows 10 Enterprise trial is to join the Windows Insider Preview program. Be warned when signing up for Windows 10 Insider Previews, you are choosing to download, install, and use pre-release software still under heavy development. The risk is indeed high, as evidenced by a recent unintended delivery of hard-edged internal versions, not even aimed at users interested in cutting-edge technology. Users have recovery options, such as rolling back within 10 days of upgrading – that is, if you can boot the system. Regular backups, such as creating system images or storing files on OneDrive, should make you secure enough to use Windows 10 Insider builds while getting a free copy of the software. But again, use it at your own risk. For users who already have an installed and activated copy of Windows 10 but would like a second copy setup, perhaps for compatibility purposes on a second drive or partition, there is a gap available. I found that if you’ve already installed and activated Windows 10 with a Digital License, you can do just that. Just install a second copy and it will be activated without even asking questions. Previously, additional installations, even on the same hardware, required the purchase of an additional license to activate. The User License Terms Final still say you do, but apparently it’s not mandatory – for now. The free upgrade situation is a bit ironic, and I mean it the way Alanis Morisette meant it: not really ironic, but rather unfortunate for some individuals. Microsoft is pushing a full year term and I’m sure many users with qualifying Windows 7 and Windows 8 licenses have ended up buy a full Windows 10 license – when, technically, they’ve already paid.

Final note

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