With the release of Windows 10 as a free upgrade a couple of months ago, a small portion of the general public was apparently a bit confused about the method through which they could obtain their activated copy of the OS. Nearly two months after its release, Microsoft has now finally published a guide detailing the activation process users should follow, based on the path they used to install Windows 10.
The page confirms that users who upgraded from Windows 7 or 8.1, purchased Windows 10 or Windows 10 Pro upgrade from the Windows Store, or enrolled in the Insider program will have their copies of Windows 10 activated via "digital entitlement", which essentially means that you don't have to enter a product key.
Furthermore, Microsoft has also clarified that a product key is only required for users who buy a digital or physical copy of Windows 10 from an authorized retailer, have a Volume Licensing agreement for Windows 10, a MSDN subscription, or possess a device running Windows 10.
The guide also contains in-depth explanations about the method to activate devices in various scenarios including:
- Activating Windows 10 after the free upgrade from Windows 7 or Windows 8.1
- Activating after reinstalling Windows 10
- Activating a new installation of Windows 10
- Activating the latest Windows 10 Insider Preview
- Activating Windows 10 after a hardware configuration change
Windows 10 launched on July 29 earlier this year, and Microsoft has confirmed that eligible users will be able to upgrade to the latest version of the operating system free of cost.