PC users who are fond of Windows 7 must make up their minds: sooner or later, you will have to migrate to Windows 10. The good news is that this migration can be done without paying or only for a Lilliputian sum…
On January 14, 2020, Microsoft announced the end of all maintenance for Windows 7. In fact, the publisher continued to practice a few security updates from time to time. However, in January 2023, Microsoft specified that these updates had ended once and for all. Many individuals and companies have continued to use this system, which appeared in October 2009, and which has enjoyed great popularity – some consider it Microsoft’s best system. Now, you have to consider migrating to Windows 10 sooner or later. Already, a browser like Chrome or an application like Google Drive only works at full capacity on PCs with Windows 10.
An official migration, how much is it?
When Windows 10 was released on July 29, 2015, Microsoft offered its users to migrate to this new version for free and it remained so until July 2016. Then, Windows 10 officially became paid – about 35 € for an individual.
However, it is still possible to migrate to this system for free or even at a very reduced price – less than 1 €! We will explore both of these options here.
It is highly recommended, before carrying out such an update, to completely save the existing configuration. For this you will need an external hard drive or a USB key with a large storage volume. Thanks to such a backup, it will always be possible to go back and restore the computer if you find that it does not work well once in Windows 10.
To perform such an operation, select the Backup and Restore application provided with Windows 7 (just type “Backup” in the search box of the Windows menu). Then choose “Create a system image” – such an image can be restored and will return your PC to its previous state, as is. You will certainly have to have a large hard disk, but in the event of a problem, you will be very happy to have made such a backup. Failing that, at least make sure to back up all your essential files: documents, photos, videos, etc.
Check PC configuration
Microsoft recommends having a PC with at least the following power before migrating to Windows 10:
1 GB on a 32-bit system.
2 GB on a 64-bit system
Hard disk space
16 GB on a 32-bit system or 32 GB on a 64-bit system
800 x 600
From experience, we can say that these specifications are insufficient. It is better to have much higher capacities for comfortable use of Windows 10. A 4 GB RAM and a large SSD type hard drive are recommended.
A free update from the Microsoft site
Despite what Microsoft claims, the update can therefore be carried out for free? Yes, and the most amazing thing is that the operation can be carried out directly from the Microsoft site at the page titled Download Windows 10.
Select the “Download the tool now” option in the “Want to install Windows 10 on your PC?” “. You retrieve a file which must then be executed. As of this writing, this executable file is called MediaCreationTool22H2, but the numbering may have changed in the meantime. Click on this program to launch it and let yourself be guided.
You will need to click on “Upgrade this PC”, after which the tool will download Windows 10 and install it. Be sure further to select the option “Keep personal files and applications” so that access to them is restored in Windows 10.
If you choose “Create an installation medium”, you will then have to indicate what this medium is (USB key, DVD, etc.) and then the installation can be carried out from this medium.
Note that this migration tool will only work if you have a legal version of Windows 7.
Once in Windows 10, the first time you start this new system, you will be prompted to do a personalization of the environment with options such as geolocation, which you can allow or not.
If the update does not work
Curiously, the aforementioned operation does not always work, and Windows then displays a curious message explaining that it does not know why it did not work. Never mind, you can acquire official activation keys for less than 1 euro on discounter sites. You then receive an official authentication code which allows you to download Windows 10, install it and activate it. And the thing also applies to the new Windows 11 version.