Should you upgrade to Windows 10?

Tech Today with Ken May

Windows 10 was officially released back in July, and many of you are probably wondering if you should do the upgrade. Particularly compelling this time around is that fact Microsoft is offering the upgrade free for the first year that it’s available. Coming hot off the heels of a fairly lackluster showing for its last release, Windows 8, Microsoft is betting the farm on this one.

I can say anecdotally that so far, after upgrading five computers, some Windows 7 and some Windows 8, it was one of the smoothest experiences I’ve ever had upgrading an operating system. One computer, which was the first one I did, on launch day, lost its video card driver, but it detected that it was missing, and automatically installed it after a reboot.

Every single application we’ve tested so far has worked just fine in Windows 10. Drivers and other software that worked in Windows 7and 8 all seem to be working well.

If you have an older PC, running Vista or Windows XP, you may run into issues with device drivers, but at this point, you’re probably lucky the computer is still running! Some privacy concerns have been raised about Windows 10, namely, that it sends diagnostic data back towards Microsoft. The concerns have been deeply examined, and it doesn’t look like Microsoft is doing anything differently than most other providers. In order to use features like Cortana, Microsoft’s Siri-like personal assistant feature, it needs to be constantly updating and learning.

Other concerns raised are regarding the new way Windows handles security and system updates. For the most part, by default, updates now automatically come in and are applied to your computer without requiring your approval. The updates go through 3-4 rounds of ever increasingly sized pools of people testing them first before they get to you. As a field technician for many years, and now as a CEO running a company that manages hundreds of computers for our clients, I’m extremely pleased by this. The vast majority of security issues we’ve seen, especially including virus infections, have been due to out of date computers missing critical patches. Many people seem to ignore these updates, so this new method should cut down the amount of infections we see.

The bottom line is, should you upgrade? At this point, we’re saying yes. If you had Windows 7, things are a little different, but it won’t take too much time to get used to. If you had Windows 8, definitely upgrade, as Windows 10 is much more user friendly, especially with the return of the Start Menu. Lastly, battery life has been improved a bit as well as the optional touch interface that runs on devices with touch screens, so if you have a mobile device, there’s even more reason to upgrade.

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