Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Advertisement

Windows 8.1 How To Upgrade To Windows 8.1 Preview & What To Expect How To Upgrade To Windows 8.1 Preview & What To Expect Anyone using Windows 8 can now upgrade to a preview version of Windows 8.1 for free. This update refines Windows 8, giving keyboard and mouse users important interface improvements and making the Modern interface more... Read More is going to be available to all Windows 8 users as a free upgrade in less than a month, on October 18. Windows 8.1 makes significant changes to Windows 8 and it’s a worthy upgrade whether you’re using Windows 8 on a desktop PC, a tablet, or something in between. How you’ll upgrade depends on which version of Windows you’re upgrading from — Windows 7, Windows 8, or even the Windows 8.1 preview release.

Is Windows 8.1 worth upgrading to from Windows 7? That’s a tough question and everyone has a different opinion, especially given Microsoft isn’t offering cheap upgrades anymore. At $120, you could get a lot more bang for your buck by upgrading your PC’s hardware — or just put that cash towards a new PC with touch that will run Windows 8.1 better.

Is it worth upgrading to from Windows 8? Yes, absolutely. Windows 8.1 is what Windows 8 should have been. The Modern interface isn’t as half-baked, while desktop users have been tossed a few bones that make it easier to ignore all the new Modern stuff.

If You’re Upgrading From Windows 7 or Earlier

Many people have said that Windows 8.1 finally makes it possible to leave Windows 7 behind. It has an option to boot to the desktop and restores a Start button. The button just loads the full-screen Start screen, but you can configure the Start screen to display a list of your desktop apps and never again see a single tile,  live or otherwise 7 Windows 8 Niggles Resolved 7 Windows 8 Niggles Resolved Windows 8 has a number of features that can be annoying to experienced users of the traditional Windows desktop. From adding a Start menu to disabling the bulky ribbon, noisy live tiles, and unnecessary lock... Read More .

However, you can’t upgrade directly from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1. You have two options: You can upgrade your system to Windows 8 Upgrading to Windows 8? Get Settled In Faster with these Tips Upgrading to Windows 8? Get Settled In Faster with these Tips If it's about time you purchase a new computer, that computer is probably going to come with Windows 8. Microsoft hasn't included a tutorial with Windows 8 -- aside from the cryptic "move your mouse... Read More now and then upgrade to Windows 8.1 when it’s available, keeping all your installed applications and files. Or, you can perform a clean install of Windows 8.1 over Windows 7, losing your desktop applications.

  • If You Want to Perform an Upgrade Install: Upgrade to Windows 8 before Windows 8.1 is available. You’ll then be able to upgrade directly to Windows 8.1 from the Windows Store when it’s released.
  • If You Want to Perform a Clean Install: Back up your important files and make a list of all the programs you’ll want to install on Windows 8. You could even download their installers before Windows 8.1 is released, making the upgrade process faster.

install windows 8 from usb

Advertisement

If you’re upgrading from Windows Vista or XP, you’ll need to perform a clean install of Windows 8.1 — unless you feel like upgrading to Windows 7 first, upgrading to Windows 8, and then finally upgrading to Windows 8.1

If You’re Upgrading From Windows 8

Windows 8 users have it easy. Windows 8.1 will be available from the Windows Store — yes, that’s the Store app in the Modern Windows 8 environment — as a free upgrade. It will download and install without you requiring any payment or preparation of installation media.

Because it will be available from the Windows Store, you’ll need to ensure you’re using a Microsoft account to log into Windows How Microsoft Overhauled User Accounts In Windows 8 How Microsoft Overhauled User Accounts In Windows 8 What's up with user accounts in Windows 8? It's not complicated - Microsoft wants everyone to use an online account to sign into their desktop operating system. Sure, they offer an offline equivalent, but they... Read More , not a local user account. This was required for the Windows 8.1 Preview release, so it’s a good bet that Microsoft will mandate Microsoft accounts for upgrades when Windows 8.1 is officially released. You should still be able to download Windows 8.1 installation media and perform clean installs with it, but upgrading without a reinstall seems to require a Microsoft account.

You’ll want to switch your local user account to a Microsoft account ahead of time so you can download the update. Ensure you’re using a Microsoft account by opening the Modern PC Settings app (press Windows Key + C to access the charms, select Settings, and select Change PC settings), selecting Users, and checking your user account. If you see a button allowing you to switch to a local account, you’re already using a Microsoft account.

windows-8-microsoft-account

If you really don’t want to use a Microsoft account, you could add a new, separate Microsoft account to your PC. When upgrade day comes, sign in as that account, access the Store, and upgrade to Windows 8.1. You should then be able to delete the Microsoft account from your system and go back to using your local user account on Windows 8.1.

If You’re Upgrading From the Windows 8.1 Preview

Were you one of the brave souls who installed the Windows 8.1 Preview release How To Upgrade To Windows 8.1 Preview & What To Expect How To Upgrade To Windows 8.1 Preview & What To Expect Anyone using Windows 8 can now upgrade to a preview version of Windows 8.1 for free. This update refines Windows 8, giving keyboard and mouse users important interface improvements and making the Modern interface more... Read More on your computer? If so, we hope you read the fine print. Microsoft stated that Windows 8.1 Preview users wouldn’t be able to upgrade directly to the Windows 8.1 final release. Well, they actually can upgrade — they’ll just lose all their isntalled desktop programs. Upgrading from Windows 8.1 Preview to the final version of Windows 8.1 will effectively perform a “Refresh Your PC” operation How To Restore, Refresh, or Reset Your Windows 8 Installation How To Restore, Refresh, or Reset Your Windows 8 Installation In addition to the standard System Restore feature, Windows 8 has features for "refreshing" and "resetting" your PC. Think of these as ways of quickly re-installing Windows -- either keeping your personal files or deleting... Read More , which will wipe away all your desktop programs. You’ll have to reinstall them later.

If you want to get ready to upgrade from the Preview release to the final release, you can download your desktop programs’ installers ahead of time and ensure you have any physical discs you need. You can then quickly re-install your desktop programs after the upgrade. If you use Steam for PC games, you can copy your Steam folder to a backup location and then restore it How To Migrate Steam To a New Hard Drive How To Migrate Steam To a New Hard Drive Unlike most Windows applications, Steam can be easily moved between hard drives without redownloading or reinstalling anything. If you want to put Steam on a new hard drive – say, if you’ve bought a new... Read More without having to re-download all your games.

get-windows-8.1-preview-for-free-message

Of course, any Windows user can upgrade to Windows 8 by just performing a clean install with a Windows 8.1 disc or USB stick How To Install Windows 8 From A USB Stick How To Install Windows 8 From A USB Stick If you’re looking to install Windows 8 and your computer doesn't have a DVD drive, you’re not alone. Whether you have a Windows 8 DVD or a Windows 8 ISO file you've downloaded from Microsoft,... Read More and replacing their existing Windows system with it. If you want to do this, be sure you have backup copies of your important files. You can also get up and running more quickly by downloading installers for your preferred programs, backing up any installed PC games to avoid long downloads, and gathering any software installation discs you still use.

Do you plan on upgrading to Windows 8.1 when it’s released? If so, what version of Windows do you plan on upgrading from? Leave a comment and share your thoughts!

Image Credit: Dell Inc. on Flickr (modified)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *