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Windows 10 launch: Live Blog!

Windows 10
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This is it, chaps: the biggest day(s) of the year for Microsoft and its fans. Windows 10 is now live. We have heard announcements from not only Redmond campus and also from the firm's constellation of partners, as the new operating system rolls out through Microsoft's free upgrade program.

We expect to receive announcements regarding the new desktop, laptop and tablet hardware that will be prepared to run Windows 10 out of the box. Plus, Microsoft is holding Windows 10 fan events all over the world at its flagship retail stores to ring in the new software right, and we'll be there.

Until then, and before the updates start rolling in, we have some key articles that you should give a good read to get yourself both informed and hyped for the future of Windows.

Our hub on all things Windows 10 is a good place to start. And if you're looking for something with a little more insight into how the whole thing works – and how well it works – be sure to read our ongoing Windows 10 review.

  • Participate in our Windows 10 Q&A and you could win a Seagate 8TB external hard disk drive.

Once you're done with those, come on back – there's sure to be some juicy Windows 10 news by then. Note that the updates are done in reverse chronology.

13:51PM GMT+1: In news that has sent shockwaves around the world, it's been discovered that Solitaire on Windows 10 is has gone free-to-play. That's right: you may have got Windows 10 for an upgrade, but you'll have to shell out $1.49 a month (or $10 a year) to get the classic card game's advanced features and get rid of adverts. Oh, Microsoft.

10:10PM EST: In 24 hours, Windows 10 was downloaded over 14 million times. Microsoft said it is humbled by the response and asks for user's patience during this early rollout stages. If you need additional support, you can visit Microsoft's Answer Desk as well as retail partners like Best Buy, Bic Camera, Croma, Currys/PC World, Elkjøp, Jarrir, Incredible Connection, Media Markt, Staples, Wal-Mart, Yamada, Yodobashi and others.

16:25 GMT+1 The cheapest Windows 10-capable desktop PC costs just under £95 which is actually less than the cost of Windows 10 on its own. So you essentially get a free PC when buying the OS (well almost). Our latest survey - which looks at Windows 10 features - can be found here. UK readers can participate and get a chance to win a HP desktop PC.

11:50 GMT+1 Microsoft has pushed more than 40 Windows 10 ISO files on MSDN including IoT Core for MinnowBoard MAX and Raspberry Pi 2. The latter is a relatively tiny 517MB. There's also a Windows 10 Features on Demand which offers additional feature options available through Windows Update. This download allows organisations to pre-configure Windows 10 installation software prior to deployment.

10:20 GMT+1 While everybody's attention is on Windows 10, Microsoft has been ramping up its effort on the first big update that will hit the operating system later this year. Threshold 2 or TH2 is already in 10509 and has been updated yesterday.

9:40 GMT+1: For enterprise and business users looking to move to Windows 10, HP has introduced a set of tools to allow them to evaluate Microsoft's latest OS in a controlled environment (i.e. without causing havoc to the rest of the IT infrastructure). The four component of this suite are Test Drive Services, Transformation Services, Roadmap Service, Web App Acceleration Service for IE11.

9:40PM EST: AMD released new Catalyst drivers that support Windows 10. If your system uses AMD graphics, you can download the new drivers for better compatibility.

9:00PM EST: Windows 10 for IoT has been released to manufacturers. Supported versions include the x86 Minnowboard Max and the ARM Raspberry Pi II. Other versions are still coming. It's still unclear when Internet of Things devices with embedded Windows 10 will start appearing in the marketplace.

8:45PM EST: Are you upgrading from a Media Center Edition of Windows 7, 8 or 8.1? Unfortunately, there isn't a Media Center Edition (MCE) of Windows 10, but Microsoft is offering MCE upgraders a free license to the new DVD player app. The offer is tied to your MCE installation, so you can't use it on all your PCs.

"If you perform a clean install of Windows 10 by formatting your disc rather than upgrade, you will not get the free app," Microsoft said in a statement. "The app will be available for purchase in the Store. There are also many other popular DVD player apps already available that will continue to work after upgrading to Windows 10."

The free DVD app offer is only available for a limited time, and it "will end at or before the free Windows 10 upgrade offer."

8:30PM EST: How has your upgrade experience and day 1 experience been with Windows 10? We shared some of our experiences, both positive and negative, and we hope that you'll also share yours in the comments.

8:15PM EST: With positive media reviews of Windows 10, including our own, and strong interest in the operating system given its free price, Microsoft is on its way to an ambitious goal of getting Windows 10 on a billion devices. Our own Cameron Faulkner suggests ways for Microsoft to reach and keep that lofty goal.

8:00PM EST: Are you a Solitaire player? The classic game is included free in Windows 10, but includes advertisements. If you don't want to see ads, Microsoft offers a subscription cost of $1.50 per month, or $10 (£6, AU$ 13) annually.

7:00PM EST: If you love Windows 10 on your PC and want it on your phone, Microsoft says that its almost ready for your Lumia smartphone. One Microsoft executive even commented saying that Windows 10 Mobile could launch in November. With Windows 10 Mobile and Universal Windows apps, you can buy once and use the same apps on your desktop PC, laptop, tablet, smartphone and even Xbox One.

5:00PM EST: What Windows 10 bugs have you encountered so far? These are a few of the complaints that we're seeing on the internet:

  • Windows wants to be heard: A headphone glitch means that your speakers will still play, even if your headphones are connected.
  • Ctrl+C: The copy function doesn't work sometimes. This could be bad for business, especially for those working inside Excel spreadsheets.
  • "Something happened" bug: A blue screen pops up with the words "Something happened" alerting users that they can't download and upgrade.
  • Windows Store problems: I've noticed this on a review PC that Microsoft sent. After upgrading, you won't find the Store, the bundled Windows 10 apps or any Modern or Store apps. I found out that the problem was a result of not having an associated Microsoft ID on my review laptop on Windows 8.1 prior to the upgrade. With a Microsoft ID in place, the upgrade went smoothly.

Anything else you're seeing? Be sure to let us know.

4:20PM EST: The puzzle pieces are starting to fit together. Microsoft has announced that Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote (a.k.a Office) have been completely revamped to adapt to the new Windows 10 touchscreen experience. You can access Office Mobile for Tablets via the Windows Store today.

3:00PM EST: Many of you have reported serious installation issues. This is a known problem with a very simple fix. We've got the details here.

2:45PM EST: Once you've downloaded Windows 10, there's a nifty way to reclaim the storage space taken up by the installation of your previous operating system. We show you how to reclaim that space, here.

2:00PM EST: Uh oh. Turns out Windows 10 has a start menu bug that gets triggered when you compile more than 512 application shortcuts. Microsoft is currently working on a fix for the issue.

1:50PM EST: Windows 10 Enterprise will be available on August 1st. We've added a post withdetails for those who require more administrative controls.

1:40PM EST: So lets say you upgraded to Windows 10, but you want to run programs from old versions of Windows. There's a way to do it. We've penned a nifty little article that can show you how!

1:00PM EST: Microsoft's counter shows that Windows 10 is being installed at a rate of approximately 16 per second, according to a tweet from Jonathan Sampson. That amounts to 960 installs every minute, or 57,600 installs in an hour. If the momentum sustains, Windows 10 will be on over 1.3 million PCs in a day.

12:51PM EST: If you're about to run to the store to buy a notebook on which to run Windows 10, we suggest you consider one of these 10 laptops ideally suited for the new operating system.

12:18PM EST: Many of you have reported experiencing significant bugs after upgrading to Windows 10. Microsoft has just released its Day One patch to help alleviate these issues. Although more bugs are to be expected, you should receive a temporary reprieve with this fix.

12:02PM EST: For our readers in India: Microsoft has confirmed that Cortana will be coming to you within the next couple of weeks.

12:00PM EST: Want Windows 10, but aren't ready to commit to the OS exclusively? We wrote up a nice primer on how you can multi-boot Windows 10 with other systems.

11:30AM EST: Alright, so you've tried Windows 10 for a few hours and you've decided it's time to downgrade, we've listed a few steps to help you get back to the comfort of Windows 7 (and even Windows 8).

16:00 GMT+1: We've gone hands on with one of the first devices pre-loaded with Windows 10, the HP Elite x2 1011. Check out our initial thoughts about the hybrid device.

15:30 GMT+1: With all the brouhaha surrounding the launch of Windows 10, it would be easy to forget that next month will mark the 20th anniversary of Windows 95. Yep, 20 years since Chicago and the birth of the start menu, a tiny piece of screen real estate that can either make or break operating systems as we've seen with Windows 8.

ninjacat

13:15 GMT+1: Oh and if you are waiting for Windows 10 Mobile in order to buy Windows 10, then you might be disappointed. This is what Microsoft had to tell TechRadar, "We will release Windows 10 on mobile to our mobile operators this summer and our customers can expect to see Windows 10 on their mobiles later this year. We will have more to share on various editions of Windows 10 prior to its availability."

11:35 GMT+1: Remember that you will have 30 days to roll back or downgrade once you install Windows 10 and find out that it doesn't suit your taste and if you're still in between two minds when it comes to debating whether to upgrade to Windows 10 or not, then you might want to read our guide.

10:15 GMT+1: TechRadar's & T3 editors have chimed in when queried about what they think of Windows 10. A lot of positives but some criticisms as well. One thing is clear though, this is better than Windows 8.1 or Windows 8, not that it was a difficult task to achieve.

09:40 GMT+1: Chuong Nguyen wrote his impressions having lived with Windows 10 for the last 24 hours. His personal account of installing and using Microsoft's new flagship OS might actually strike a cord with some of you as it is not just all rosy.

08:15 GMT+1: So Windows 10 is now live in 190 countries as a free upgrade and has been tested on more than 2000 devices or configurations. More than 5m people have tested and installed Windows 10 already and Microsoft has trained more than 100,000 retailers with tens of thousands of stores carrying Windows 10 products at launch today.

07:40 GMT+1: Microsoft has also finally released the final ISOs of Windows 10 both in 32-bit and 64-bit format. You can find more details about how to download and install them here (opens in new tab).

06:35 GMT+1: Good Morning UK and welcome to Windows 10 day! The picture below reminded me of another one put up by Microsoft itself. The picture below, that of a ninjacat, brandishing a Windows flag and riding a Tyrannosaurus Rex robot, examplifies the quirkiness of the new Microsoft. One can bet that this sort of behaviour wouldn't have happened under the old guard.

ninjacat

12:00AM EST: Windows 10 is now live on the US East Coast! Start frantically checking that little icon and Windows Update .... now. Just kidding, Microsoft says it'll let you know when it's ready.

Windows 10

8:30PM EST: Just how much web traffic will Windows 10 generate? According to Streaming Media, Windows 10 could very well be the next Kim Kardashian, a reference to the reality star's record setting photo on the internet. The site claims that Microsoft could "break" the internet, and download traffic for the operating system could top 40TB per second! The free price of the upgrade for existing Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 users will add to the hype and anticipation.

Do you think Windows 10 will live up to expectations? Or will it be a flop? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check out our review.

8:00PM EST: If you're ready and eager to update, there are a few housekeeping things you can do right now to prepare in advance of Windows 10's arrival. Once your update to Windows 10 is ready, you can also read our guide on how to upgrade.

7:45PM EST: Microsoft responds to a recent third-party test, which places its anti-virus Windows Defender solution at the bottom of the list. "The results from the latest AV comparison tests do not accurately reflect the protection that Windows has to offer or what our customers are experiencing," Microsoft said in a statement to WinBeta, noting that Windows Defender must be examined together with solutions like Microsoft SmartScreen.

Microsoft told TechRadar independently that Windows Defender comes pre-loaded on Windows 10, and it will be constantly updated with the latest definitions through Windows Update to keep customers safe. In addition to threats against viruses, Aaron Woodman, Director at Microsoft, said that SmartScreen helps to protect users against phishing when visiting websites detected as suspicious.

7:00PM EST: Windows 10 is now live in the United Kingdom!

6:00PM EST: Windows 10 is now live in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, Geneva, Madrid, Milan, Rome, Vienna, and Zurich.

5:30PM EST: Twitter's Windows 10 app is now live in the Windows Store.

5:08PM EST: Here is our first look Windows 10 video:

4:47PM EST: For our comprehensive review of Windows 10, please click here. Spoiler alert: We loved it!

4:07PM EST: We're starting to see previews for apps specifically designed for Windows 10 appearing in the Windows Store. A new Twitter app, which features integrated video, a refresh button that's available anywhere on the screen, and a right-aligned tweeting window are among the new updates to the app.

3:30PM EST: If you need a Windows 10 device, but you don't want to break the bank, Acer just unveiled its new lineup of laptops running on the new operating system.

2:37PM EST: In case you missed it, here's Microsoft's entirely superfluous Windows 10 music video in all its glory:

1:09PM EST HP isn't the only manufacturer offering free overnight delivery on Windows 10 laptops. Dell is also getting into the mix with a wide variety of Inspiron laptops available if you order by 3PM PST.

12:49PM EST If you're dying to get your hands on a Windows 10 PC, HP has got you covered. Anyone who orders one of the select Windows 10 devices before 5PM Pacific Standard Time will receive their device tomorrow, with no delivery charge added.

12:19PM EST Some lucky PC owners have already started to get Windows 10 ahead of its official release in less than 24 hours time. If you're one of the chosen ones, a new folder will appear on your operating system partition ($windows. bt) and you can start to get to grips with Microsoft's revolutionary new OS as soon as it launches.

17:10 London Interesting titbit. Dell and Microsoft engineers began work on the key features of Windows 10 in 2013 to help Dell design new PC solutions for customers. The company is seemingly doing its best to make sure that its customers embrace the Windows 10 transition smoothly. It is publishing a series of Web videos that cover topics including how to upgrade to Windows 10, key features, basic functions of the new OS, and how to use the OS on virtual desktops. Additional videos will be influenced by customer conversations and inquiries received across support.

Windows 10 on a Dell laptop

Windows 10 on a Dell laptop

17:00 Some quick reading from us before the US team takes over. Our latest Windows 10 survey is out and the majority of you want Microsoft to come up with a simpler, cleaner upgrade process to entice them to move platform. We also just published a handy guide on how to install Windows 10 on your Mac (obviously not as your main OS) and 20 common problems you might encounter with Windows 10.

16:20 So Microsoft now has a launch website. It contains a list of 10 reasons why you should buy Windows 10. Check the 10th reason. Me think the marketing team at Microsoft ran out of ideas.

More like 9 reasons TBH

More like 9 reasons TBH

15:30 Don't forget that reserving your free Windows 10 upgrade is a sine qua non condition if you want to reserve it when it launches. Look out for the relevant icon in your tray bar. More details from Microsoft's Windows 10 upgrade (opens in new tab).

Reserve

This is the icon you should be looking for

13:45 Windows 10 comes with a lot of new and improved features. We counted 20 of them. However, should you plan to upgrade to Windows 10, you will lose a few as well.

11:50 Lenovo confirmed that it has begun shipping "a wide slection of products" preloaded with Windows 10, which means you will be able to purchase them at launch. In addition, the Chinese company worked with Microsoft to make the upgrade process simpler for people with Qualified Lenovo PC running Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1. Windows 10 users will have access to exclusive Lenovo apps including Lenovo Companion 3.0, Lenovo Settings, Lenovo REACHit and Cortana natural language and contextual search tool.

10:30 IT Pro community website, Spiceworks, has seen penetration rates among its six-million-strong professional user base reach 3% (as of June 30th) up from 1.5% in April this year. Spiceworks' recent Windows 10 report found that 73% of IT pros across North America and Europe plan to upgrade to Windows 10 within the first two years, which bodes well for Microsoft.

Windows 10

Windows 10 settings

10:20 Check out all the recent surveys we've carried out ahead of the launch of Windows 10.

And there's still time to vote in our currently running survey:

Do you plan to buy a new computer (laptop, desktop, tablet) to run Windows 10?

0900 Morning everyone. It's nearly 2100 on Chatham Island on the other side of the world, near New Zealand as they're just about to reach the 29th. The estimated two million eligible PCs in New Zealand are likely to be the first one to receive Windows 10 for free. Ahead of everyone else.

Joe Osborne also contributed to this report

Desire Athow
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website builders and web hosting when DHTML and frames were in vogue and started narrating about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium.