To 10, or not to 10- That is the Question:

Should we make the move to Windows 10?

Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users have started seeing a small icon on their taskbar telling them that Windows 10 is available. Of course there are questions about this new operating system and if it should installed or not.

What is Windows 10?

Windows 10 is Microsoft’s newest operating system. It seems to bridge the transition between the traditional desktop applications and the universal apps (Metro Apps have been rebranded to “Windows Apps”) far better than Windows 8 with the return of a more traditional Start Menu. The new Start Menu includes the “All Apps” link similar to Windows 7 along side a scrollable Windows Apps Menu for the universal apps all in one view. One of the nice new features for convertible laptops is the ability to automatically transition to and from Tablet Mode when the screen is docked or undocked. It should also be as quick to boot and run as Windows 8.1. Overall it is designed to be able to function across multiple devices: Tablets, Smartphones, the Xbox One Gaming console, and many varieties of PC’s.

What kind of new features are there?

First major new addition is Microsoft Edge, which is their replacement for Internet Explorer. As well, there is a new Digital Assistant named Cortana, you will be able to use speech or text commands to perform multiple tasks, such as opening or interacting with various applications.

Will I still be able to use…?

All of Microsoft’s programs, such as Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) can be used right away. Unfortunately most 3rd party programs and custom business software packages are to be determined on a case by case basis. Windows 10 comes with a “Compatibility Mode” option which can trick some older applications in to thinking that they are running in their intended operating system which can help alleviate some of these compatibility issues.

Should I upgrade now?

Our current recommendation is to wait a minimum of 3 months. Our experience tells us that all new software, especially operating systems due to their size and complexity, can have an abundance of bugs and quirks to be resolved after their initial release. There is no rush at this time, for Microsoft is offering Windows 10 for current Windows 7 or 8.1 users for free until July 29, 2016. After 3 months you may contact Winchester Computers for a current recommendation at that time.

Initial impression…

Windows 10 looks to be very promising with its ample performance and the host of new features like Cortana but initially there have been some issues. Hardware compatibility seems to be the Achilles heel for Windows 10 thus far. Many of our customers who have already made the transition have brought in their systems to revert them back to the previous operating system because of hardware compatibility issues with their computer or peripheral devices (printers, etc.). There are already a number of new infections that appear to take advantage of security gaps in the new Edge browser and we have already performed many virus removals on Windows 10 systems. The overall consensus is that Windows 10 looks to be a move in the right direction for Microsoft but seems a little unfinished.

If you have any questions or concerns about Windows 10 or any other computer issue please contact Winchester Computers and we will be happy to assist you.

By Eddie Vaught -
Edited by Robert Hester