Microsoft just made it much easier to activate Windows 10

Windows 10

Microsoft has pushed out a new tool which will help ensure that Windows 10 users won't run into any activation issues with the OS going forward.

The new Activation Troubleshooter has been delivered to testers with the latest preview build of Windows 10, and will likely be arriving in the full release of the desktop operating system with next month's Anniversary Update.

The tool is designed to deal with activation issues which may crop up for Windows users, most commonly when they perform a major hardware upgrade such as swapping out the motherboard (a big change like this could potentially mean the PC is detected as a 'new' machine).

Redmond has decided to allow users to link their Microsoft Account with their digital license for Windows 10, and in a blog post, the company notes: "You can use this MSA [Microsoft Account] linked digital license to re-activate your Genuine Windows 10 device by running the Activation Troubleshooter, if you run into Activation issues caused by hardware changes."

Painless reinstallation

The troubleshooter utility will also help in cases where a user has to reinstall the operating system, and installs the wrong version – for example, someone might use Windows 10 Home when their license is for Windows 10 Pro. In this case, the tool will detect the errant version and automatically guide the user through the process of upgrading to Pro and ensuing activation.

All in all, the tool should make things much easier for those upgrading their PC or reinstalling on the software front.

Note that if you haven't upgraded to Windows 10 yet, the free offer (for Windows 7/8.1 users) expires at the end of next month, so if you're still on the fence, you've not got long to make the decision now.

Mind you, you're probably well aware of that thanks to the many pop-ups Microsoft has been spamming your desktop with for the best part of a year, urging you to make the move.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).