If you're one of the millions of people who have reserved a copy of Windows 10 and watched the release date come and go, sure that the notification area of your taskbar is going to light-up any minute -- there is bad news: you may be waiting a while.
C|Net is reporting that Windows 10 is now running on more than 14 million machines. It is difficult to determine precisely when individual users who reserved a copy of Windows 10 will be able to download and install it. Vendors and Windows 10 beta testers are the first groups getting a look at the new operating system.
On the Microsoft Windows Blog, Yusuf Mehdi, president of Microsoft Windows and the Devices Group reports that, "We are doing everything we can to upgrade the world to Windows 10 as quickly as possible over the coming days and weeks ahead."
For users that simply can't wait, Windows 10 can be downloaded from Microsoft, using the Media Creation Tool. Users are required to have a USB drive or CD ready in order to create Windows 10 media.
Users installing Windows for the first time will need a key. The keys of Windows 7 and 8.1 users receiving the free upgrade should be automatically detected.
Windows 10 is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. It is best for users to stick with the version they are currently running. The 32-bit Windows 10 requires 1 GB of RAM and the 64-bit requires 2GB. Sixteen GB of hard drive space is recommended for the 32-bit and 20 GB for the 64-bit. A 1 Ghz or faster processor is also recommended as well as a DirectX 9 graphics card with WDDM 1.0 driver.
If you're confident that you have all of these things in place and you're ready to download Windows 10, it might be a good idea to back up your computer first, in case anything goes wrong -- a power failure or clumsy dog could interrupt the Windows 10 install: having a backup ready can only serve to make the upgrade as problem-free as possible. Back up the computer using the Backup and Restore tool in the Control Panel.
Once you have a back up of your current hard drive and the minimum system requirements, you're all set to download the Microsoft Media Creation Tool and begin the process of upgrading to Windows 10.
After the Media Creation Tool has downloaded and users have accepted the End User License Agreement, they will be prompted to select one of three choices of types of installs: Keep personal files and apps; Keep personal files only; and Nothing.
Make sure to choose "Keep personal files and apps" if you want to keep your data and programs. After the Windows 10 installation is complete, users can inspect the installation by visiting System in the Control Panel.
Windows 10 has been receiving positive reviews from users. Here's what Chuong Nguyen with TechRadar has to say: