Windows 10 is finally here, and while it's generally smarter to see how things go with new software for a while before diving in yourself, I couldn't wait to upgrade to Microsoft's latest operating system on not one, but two computers. And neither should you.
Between Xbox One game streaming, the return of the Start Menu and Cortana, there are plenty of reasons to get excited. Microsoft is pulling out all the stops to make Windows 10 the most loved release of Windows yet, and the first truly worthy successor to Windows 7 (sorry, Windows 8.1 and Windows 8).
Whether you're an OS convert, complete newcomer or a veteran user coming from an older Windows release, there's almost no reason not to jump on the Windows 10 ship right now. And in case you're still waiting for your reservation, there are a few tricks to get around it.
In it for the long haul
While Microsoft has promised to support Windows 8.1 until 2023, Windows 10 has surely become the main focus for the company's software development, giving you all the more reason to abandon the old ship now.
Windows 10 will be one of the longest-lived operating systems ever. Microsoft has promised it will continue to support and develop new features for the OS until October 13, 2020. Five years of continual updates is in stark contrast to the year-long gap between Windows 8 and 8.1's respective releases. Windows 7 only saw the limelight for three years before it was pushed off the main stage by Windows 8.
What's more, after "mainstream" support ends, Windows 10 will still receive security patches and other extended support for another five years, ending on October 14, 2025.
[Editor's Note: This article originally Windows 10 would bring the death of Patch Tuesdays, but the 12-old-practice will be sticking around after all. However, Microsoft will also release more updates outside of its usual monthly cycle]
Even the manner in which software updates are distributed is going to change, with more updates coming outside of Patch Tuesdays. Rather than waiting to send important updates and new features on the second Tuesday of every month, Microsoft plans to release a steady stream of patches throughout the month.
While this will mean having to stop and download updates more regularly, faster responses to bugs and vulnerabilities will be better for everyone in the long run. This is by far one of the most important reasons to get off the older and slower-to-update versions of Windows.
Fixing the desktop
If you're fed up with the disjointed desktop experience on Windows 8.1 and Windows 8, then Windows 10 is your ticket out.
More than anything else, Windows 10 represents a return to form after the introduction of a full-screen Start Menu irked so many – it wasn't a surprise to hear applause when Microsoft announced the return of a revamped Start Menu in its newest operating system.
The new Start Menu will enable you to scroll through your list of applications and dive into folder trees, just as the old standby did in Windows 7. Of course things will change a bit, with the Live Tiles livening up the Start Menu with a constant stream of new information and animations.
Windows 10 also changes the way Modern applications work by putting them into resizable windows that live right next to your regular applications, which is something Windows 8.1 never got right.
- Read more about Windows 10 migration on our sister website, ITProPortal.com