Today Microsoft formally announced the release date for Windows 10, the latest version of their Windows operating system. Up until this point, all Microsoft had said was that they were aiming for a summer release. Today's post on the official Windows blog states the release date for Windows 10 has now been set for July 29, less than two months from now.

According to the blog post, Microsoft will be simultaniously launching Windows 10 around the globe to some 1.5 billion Windows users that currently reside in over 190 different countries, making it the widest Windows has ever been released at once. Windows 10 is Microsoft's chance to win back users who didn't embrace the changes made in Windows 8, and they have a lot riding on its success. Offering it as a free upgrade to existing Windows users will certainly help in gaining adoption.

Even with the free nature of the upgrade, the promise of a July release date for such a monumental update is quite a bold move on Microsoft's part. The less than optimal state of the current Windows 10 testing builds means that Microsoft has a great deal of work ahead of them as they squash bugs and improve the stability of Windows 10 in the two months between now and release. As a user who is keen on upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10, I really hope they succeed.

Finally, Microsoft has revealed a few more details about how Windows 10 distribution will work. Starting today, users can "reserve" Windows 10 on Windows 7/8.1 machines. Reserving Windows will in turn flag a machine for pre-loading, with Microsoft distributing most of Windows 10 ahead of time as to get it in to customers' hands more quickly to better balance the expected load on their server backend. According to Microsoft's FAQ, reserving/pre-loading Windows 10 only downloads it, and users will still manually confirm the installation, or for that matter users can cancel the reservation entirely. Pre-loading has not started yet, and while Microsoft doesn't say when it will start, I expect it won't be until very near July 29th.

Windows 10 Upgrade Paths
Win10 Win7 Win8.1
Windows 10 Home Windows 7 Starter Windows 8.1 (Core)
Windows 7 Home Basic Windows 8.1 (Country-Specific)
Windows 7 Home Premium Windows 8.1 w/Bing
Windows 10 Pro Windows 7 Professional Windows 8.1 Pro
Windows 7 Ultimate Windows 8.1 Pro for Students
Windows 10 Mobile N/A Windows Phone 8.1

Along with detailing the reservation process, Microsoft has also confirmed the upgrade paths for various versions of Windows. As expected, all Pro/Ultimate versions of Windows 7 and 8.1 will get upgraded to Windows 10 Pro, while all other versions of desktop/tablet Windows will get upgraded to Windows 10 Home. And of course, Windows Phone 8.1 devices will upgrade to Windows 10 Mobile.

Source: Microsoft (via re/code)

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  • imaheadcase - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    What is the difference between Pro and non-pro for win 10? I have Pro for remote desktop feature..is it still included? Reply
  • nathanddrews - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    Yes, remote desktop is still there. Windows 10 Pro will have everything 7/8 Pro has, plus more. Unfortunately, this page seems to have gone on vacation:
    http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/www.microso...
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10... Reply
  • hyno111 - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    Guess Windows RT 8.1 will receive nothing.. Reply
  • Kaboose - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    As has already been stated by microsoft.

    "Microsoft has explicitly deemed Windows RT devices to be incompatible with Windows 10, and stated that Windows RT devices would receive a separate update featuring "some" of its changes"
    Reply
  • Impulses - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    A shallow grave. Reply
  • knightspawn1138 - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    Just like the one Windows ME deserved. Reply
  • domboy - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    Maybe by some miracle they'll actually listen to the 500 people that signed this petition (including me) and provide a mechanism to unlock Windows RT once the rest of the world moves to 10:

    http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/windows-rt-desk...

    Feel free to sign it if you haven't, the more the better. That's really my only remaining hope for RT devices... let the community support them while the hardware still functions.
    Reply
  • Joe_H - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    "The less than optimal state of the current Windows 10 testing builds means that Microsoft has a great deal of work ahead of them as they squash bugs and improve the stability of Windows 10 in the two months between now and release."

    Stability? I have had absolutely no issues with the last two Windows 10 builds. Yes, there are a few bugs and a few things don't work, but Windows 10 is perfectly stable.
    Reply
  • servocharge - Monday, June 1, 2015 - link

    What about those running the technical preview? Can that installation be converted to permanent Pro version with license key and full functionality? Reply

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