Windows 10 Now a Mandatory Update - Here's How You Can Stop It From Installing
Windows 10 has many improvements over its predecessors - especially Windows 8. It's much easier to use than Windows 8, and it offers more modern controls - akin to mobile devices - than Windows 7. (There is no Windows 9.) Windows 10 also paves the way for multiple devices to work together. You might be able to buy an app once to run on your PC, phone and Xbox game machine, for instance. The app's layout would automatically reconfigure to the given screen size.
Microsoft is reducing reliance on software sales in favour of services such as the Bing search engine, OneDrive storage and Skype for communications. Windows 10 was designed to steer users to those services. Microsoft makes money from ads and premium features that cost money - such as additional OneDrive storage.
System upgrades aren't always smooth, especially on older machines with slower processors, less memory and less storage space available. Microsoft's Get Windows 10 app will verify that you meet minimum system requirements - but minimum doesn't mean speedy.
Microsoft is treating Windows 10 as a type of security update it regularly pushes to users. Microsoft is now reclassifying Windows 10 as "recommended" rather than "optional." In doing so, those who have set their machine to automatically get important updates will get Windows 10, too. You can avoid this by turning off automatic updates in the settings under Windows Update. That's not recommended, though, because you might miss important security fixes.
To install Windows 10, all you need to do is accept it when prompted. Getting Windows 10 shouldn't affect your photos and other documents, though there's always a risk of a meltdown with any major upgrade. Back up your files first. You can use an online storage service such as OneDrive or DropBox to keep a backup online.
Microsoft keeps a backup of your system for a month. In the settings, go to "Update & security" and then "Recovery." You'll find the option to return to Windows 7 or 8. Your files should be OK, but you'll lose any apps installed after upgrading to Windows 10. Remember, you have only 31 days to change your mind.