Many IT Professionals are the resident tech expert for their friends, family and neighbours and in the past month many of us have probably been asked about the Windows 10 upgrade. Questions can range from the simple is it free and is it any good (Yes and Yes), to a plea for help with obtaining the upgrade. With this is in mind, I thought I would share what I have learnt the hard way whilst out on my rounds.
Chris, who lives opposite me, loves to tinker, so when his machine upgraded it ran like a snail and Cortana was missing. Ed Baker has an infallible guide on setting up Cortana so I won’t steal the show except to say that if you get the response that ‘Cortana is blocked by company policy’ that is misleading - in Chris’s case the machine isn’t even domain joined (top tip: never muck about with your mates work machine! ). Chris’s machine was slow for the same reason Windows is always slow – it’s nothing to do with Windows – it’s the add-ons, add-ins and spurious software that some of our friends seem to always end up with.
Fortunately Windows 8 and now 10 have a much better Task Manager…
…which features a Start-up tab amongst other things, so I can see what’s impacting start-up performance and disable the unnecessary without even uninstalling it. Compare this to Windows 7 where you could see what processes where running but not their impact, and you have an obvious improvement.
Roy’s machine was so badly infected with malware that he couldn’t start the install process at all. He wasn’t worried about any of the data on his old laptop, so the best way to go was to perform a clean install – but how do you do that for free? There are two ways:
1. At the start of the windows 10 install process you elect not to keep anything...
…select change what to keep and then select nothing..
2. You can always clean up post install and having done all the relevant updates by going to All Settings –> Update & Security –> Recovery –> Reset this PC and select what to keep
For Roy I went for option 1, but in order to do that I had to stop all of the malware processes on his laptop just to get the installation to start properly.
Finally my ballroom dance teacher Teddy simply told me she had upgraded her PC and laptop and really liked the new interface; and she’s... well she’s older than me… so make no assumptions about who you might have to help!