Microsoft's offer to upgrade qualified Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 devices to Windows 10 for free ends July 29, 2016. Microsoft’s extended support commitment for Windows 7 ends Jan 14, 2020.
Upgrading from the panned Windows 8 OS is an easy decision as Windows 10 significantly improves on Windows 8 with a clean and more intuitive interface, similar to Windows 7. Switching from the stable and familiar Windows 7 is a little more complicated.
To help with the decision, here are some Windows 10 benefits to consider:
- Faster startup speeds, especially compared to Windows 7.
- The Start Menu is back by popular demand, after it was removed in Windows 8.
- Comes with "Secure Boot", which requires any code that runs at startup be signed by Microsoft or the hardware maker.
- Includes additional security features like Device Guard, Microsoft Passport and Windows Hello. Device Guard improves security against malware by blocking anything other than trusted apps. Windows Hello and Passport are identity tools that provide system support for biometric and 2 grade factor authentication. This includes support for things like fingerprint sensors and facial unlock features.
- Cortana is a nice addition, similar to Google Now and Apple’s Siri, which allows you to control elements of the PC with voice.
- Virtual Desktops to support multiple workspaces on a PC. If you open a lot of programs at once, this feature allows you to keep them organized, switching between workspaces by clicking the Task View button at the bottom of the screen.
Taking advantage of the free upgrade offer is in general a good idea for most situations. Users stay up to date with Microsoft's latest technology and can take advantage of the above benefits. There are exceptions. Upgrading may not make sense if the system doesn't meet minimum requirements or if there are software or hardware compatibility concerns.
If you are a small business in the San Francisco area and looking for IT support in making decisions like whether to upgrade to Windows 10, Ventura Tech can help. Contact us today!