With over 110 million downloads in just three months, Microsoft is well on its way to achieving a total of 1 billion Windows 10 devices in the next couple of years. While sales of new Windows 10 devices will certainly contribute towards achieving that goal, Microsoft is also working hard to promote upgrades from previous versions of Windows.
Starting today, Microsoft is making some changes to how upgrades work so that users can complete the process even faster.
First off, you are no longer required to make a reservation. Now, as soon as you reserve your copy of Windows 10, you will no longer need to wait for a notification, and the upgrade process will start automatically.
Soon, the upgrade will start appearing in Windows Update, which is where you'd expect any upgrades to be found. At first, it will be labeled as an "Optional Update" but starting with next year, will become a "Recommended Update". This means that the process might start automatically depending on your settings but you will still have the final say on whether the upgrade is enforced or not, by way of a confirmation prompt.
One of the biggest changes, however, is coming to users with a pirated version of Windows. Over the past three months, Microsoft has noticed users with non-genuine software going through considerable hoops to trigger the upgrade process, only to later purchase it in the Store. For such users, Microsoft will now allow non-activated copies of Windows 7 and 8/8.1 to get a valid licence through the Windows Store - this 'experiment' is currently restricted to the US, though. No, the upgrade will not be free if you don't have a valid licence, but at least Microsoft is making it easier to get one.
If Windows 10 just isn't your cup of tea and you wish to return to the Windows of yore, fret not. Your previous installation will be retained for the first 31 days after the upgrade and you can easily go back to it.