What Your Business Needs to Know About Windows 10

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We’ve featured some Windows 10 headlines in our newsletter recently. From all indications, it looks like it might be a good operating system, and even a free upgrade for many folks. But that doesn’t mean you should jump into it right off-the-bat, despite what the marketing and the little pop-up on your computer might be telling you. Read on for our thoughts on the new OS that is due to be released this month and why you may want to hold off on the upgrade.

Free Upgrade

Despite some confusion Windows 10 upgrade will be free to install for fully-licensed Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 users until a year after the release date. So basically you can install Windows for free until July 29 of 2016, assuming Windows 10 is ready.

What’s with this little Windows icon on my system tray?

You may have noticed an icon on your systray that looks like the new Windows icon. It looks something like this:

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If you have the little Windows icon on your status bar, you can use it to reserve your upgrade. That icon came from what is called Windows Update KB3035583. If you just run standard Windows Updates, you may have installed an update to cause that icon to show up. You can double-click on that icon to make your reservation for Windows 10 when it’s released.

At Weston, we actually have blocked that update with our Managed Patching and CompleteCare maintenance and monitoring programs. We didn’t want that icon to show up and potentially confuse our users and have somebody accidentally install Windows 10 when they really shouldn’t be doing so.

If the icon is on your system and you’d like to remove it and not get nagged about upgrading to Windows 10, follow these directions:

  1. Go to your start menu, select Control Panel, Programs and Features and then click Installed Updates.
  2. Do a search for KB3035583. Double-click on it and then click Yes to uninstall the update.

Should I jump into Windows 10?

In a word, no, especially in a business environment.

While all indications show that Windows 10 will be the operating system that Windows 8 should have been (kind of like Windows 7 was the operating system Windows Vista should have been), you should hold off until you’re 100% certain that every piece of hardware and software your computer interacts with is going to continue to work. Industry-specific line-of-business apps are notorious for taking their time to support new Operating System versions. If you upgrade to an unsupported OS, your software may stop working and you’ll possibly have to wipe and reload the system to get back to your old setup. Downtime and productivity losses can be costly for a business.

Windows 7 will be supported until 2020 and Windows 8.1 until 2023, so you don’t need to jump in quite yet. We recommend you hold off until talking to your vendors (or let us do it) or working with us to come up with a game plan. Contact us today if you have any further questions.

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