Upgrade to Windows 10 For FREE

Here's what you need to know

Did you know windows 7 end-of-life hits in January?  Yes? But did you know you can still upgrade to Windows 10 for free!?

Let me help you walk through the issues of end-of-life while shedding some good news!

Remember when Microsoft stopped providing upgrades to Windows XP a couple of years ago?  Most of us were already using Windows 7 so it wasn’t a big deal. But for those caught in a pickle, they had to decide if going without security upgrades was worth the risk.

What’s the risk?  When Microsoft stops providing updates, then there become holes in the security of the operating system. While a virus scan may find the problem after the fact, the crooks can find ways to breach your system without any ways of preventing it. This is the biggest risk.  Then you may also have programs that get updated that struggle running on an older system. If your system starts getting slow, the latter may be the cause.

Windows 7 will take the same hit in January, 2020. So what can you do?  What should you do?

Microsoft messages in the last few weeks have eluded (or even make it sound required) that you buy a new computer!  What??!!  Wait. This is absurd. Just a year ago they said we can upgrade for free. So what happened?  Well, nothing, really.  Maybe a dwindling pocketbook at Microsoft wanting to capitalize on this transition period.

Sure, you can buy a new computer. Yes, it will come with Windows 10 too. If you’re wanting a new computer, then maybe this is the time to buy. But if you don’t want a new computer right now, no problem!  There are other options. Windows 10 will still run on most systems.

 

So Here Are Your Options:

  1. You can do nothing; keep using Windows 7! If you’re not banking online or using the computer for more than middle school homework, then this may be fine. Keep running your virus scan and make a backup of your system in the event it crashes. For more security, though, you should probably continue on to an option below.
  2. Upgrade to Windows 10. Within the last month I have successfully upgraded 3 computers to Windows 10 for FREE!  Microsoft obviously doesnt want to tell you this, since they’re toting buying a new system.  But it’s true, you can still upgrade for free. What we don’t know is how long this will last. At some point they may just require you to pay for it (current price ranges between $50 and $139 from Microsoft.)
  3. Install a fresh copy of Windows 10 on your computer.  While free is nice, there may be a benefit to installing new.  There are a few rare issues that could surface, maybe not right away.  Drivers are installed for the new system.  But your files and programs from Windows 7 are also transferred to run on the new OS (Win 10).  Running Windows 7 programs on Win 10, may, someday cause issues.  We just don’t know what may happen in the future.  Microsoft recommends a fresh install.  By installing fresh, however, you’ll need to reinstall programs, move over all of your files, bookmarks and settings, setup your email again, as well as download your favorite browser and other free programs.
  4. Buy a new computer.  That solves that!  Not always, though.  You’ll still need to either reinstall your programs (or even buy new programs that work with Win 10), move over all of your files, bookmarks and settings, setup your email again, as well as download your favorite browser and other free programs.
  5. Wait it out.  This has similar results as doing nothing.  You never know, though.  Maybe the prices will come down on a new system or it will be easier to make the switch.

Is It Easy To Upgrade?

It can be.  But there are certain requirements to make this happen.  If you don’t have all of these things done, however, it can become very frustrating and time-consuming.

  1. All Windows updates need to be completed without errors.  Any updates that haven’t completed because of an error need to be fixed.  In some cases, an old version of Office, for example, will need to be uninstalled first, as it won’t transfer to Win 10.
  2. Hard Drive and Windows Update errors need to be fixed.
  3. Anti-viruses need to temporarily be stopped during the install process.  Windows Defender can be used in the place.
  4. All drivers need to be updated (sound, video, etc.)
  5. You need sufficient memory

 

I’ve heard bad things about Windows 10, so what do I do?

Windows 8 gave this new system a bad wrap.  For starters, they took away the familiar Desktop with icons and made it more like a mobile platform.  This was quickly booed by Windows 7 fans.  By Windows 8.1, they gave us back the desktop, but the bad PR had already given the new system a bad name.  In Windows 10, you will find many of the same functions as Windows 7, with the addition of a new “smart” search bar that will find just about anything on your computer.  While Windows 10 has come a long way and I have started to like the new system, there will still be a slight learning curve.  If enough people ask for it, I’ll consider a tutorial on the changes!  But I think you’ll become fond of the changes.

 

How Can We Help?

  • If you’d like to upgrade on your own, please first make a backup!  Go to https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10ISO on the computer you want to upgrade and follow the instructions.  You’ll need at least 1-2 hours to complete the process.  If you get stuck, we are just a phone call away!
  • Let us do the work – hassle-free!  Schedule a time to bring your computer by and we can perform the upgrade for you.  There is a tiered fee schedule to make this a fair process for you.  Some of you have everything in order to install.  Great!  We charge a $50 fee to backup your system (you’ll get the copy) and we install the upgrade.  If things get complicated, the cost can be as much as $95 so that we can get your system ready for the upgrade.

Windows FAQs

Have Questions?  Let me know.  I’m here to help…

4th Annual Earth Day FREE Recycling

FREE Recycling Takes Place April 12-22nd this year for our 4th Annual Earth-Day recycling event!

Let’s keep electronics from our landfills!  We are excited to be able to help you out around the house while helping our environment.

If you are local and want to participate, please sign-up for a time for pickup.  read more…

Items accepted: Computers, monitors, cords, phones, printers, mice, keyboards, scanners, fax machines, tablets, ALL types of home batteries, and mercury-containing light-bulbs.
Items not accepted: TVs and other large electronics.

NPR Corner: Those Silent Robot Phone Calls

Are you being inundated with inbound phony phone calls?  It’s not a new problem, but it’s getting worse.  Just last week Verizon started a free service to help filter Robocalls.  Hopefully more providers will jump onboard.

Verizon now offers 2 tiers of their Call Filter service:  A free service to filter calls and alert you of spam.  Then a “paid service for $3 per month, which will also identify unknown callers by name, even if they aren’t saved in your contacts. The paid version also includes a robocall risk meter, a spam number lookup feature, and lets you create a personal robocall list” (PC Magazine)

Learn more on what scammers are trying to accomplish from this NPR report below.

Read more at https://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2015/08/24/434313813/why-phone-fraud-starts-with-a-silent-call

Spring Cleanup to Speed-up!

6 Things To Do To Clean and Speed-up Your Computer

With Springtime comes cleaning dust and dirt!  It’s about cleaning off from the weeks of being shut in.  Ever wonder where to clean up your computer?  Follow this guide and you’ll be well on your way, prepared for summer!

Do you go months (or years) without ever cleaning or upgrading your computer?  I sometimes do too.  A quick story.  
 
Last month my wife and I painted walls in our living room that we vowed to do after moving in. 9 years ago!  So when we got around to painting, we realized how we should have done this sooner.  It transformed our room!  Why did we put off such a good thing!?

Your PC is the same way. When you clean it up and do the upgrades, performance and speed will follow!  But before you just think this means deleting old files, keep reading.

Here are 6 ways that you can cleanup this Spring:

  1. Make sure your virus scan is running and up-to-date.  As I’ve said before, it’s not as important which scanner you use, but that it’s kept up-to-date and being used.  Run a “full scan” and then open the settings and make sure it’s scheduled to run on its own.  Also, go to the settings of your computer, make sure your Firewall is ON too.  Sidenote, however: Avast is rated in the top for FREE virus scanners.  (No, I don’t get paid to promote them.) The downside to a free service is that it may not run a malware scanner automatically.  Which brings us to point 2.
  2. Run a FREE Malware scanner, such as Malwarebytes. Malware is not considered a virus, but it can act as if it is.  These files picked up by the internet and emails can just bog your computer down.  Some paid virus scanners will also have a malware scanner with it (the perk of a paid program).
  3. In your web browsers, delete all unknown and unused Add-Ons and Accelerators.  In Chrome (and others), you’ll find these under settings.  Add-ons provide different functions for your web browsing experience. But they slow you down.  So if you don’t use them (or recognize them), delete them.  If you don’t recognize them, they may be particularly burdensome since they are working on something you may not be aware of (spying, for example).
  4. Check for programs you may have accidentally downloaded and delete them.  Type “Remove Programs” in the search bar and clean “Add or Remove Programs.”  Sort the programs by install date to see which were installed last.  If you see a program you don’t recognize, make sure it isn’t a Windows program (I sometimes Google the program name to see).  Games that get downloaded for free are notorious for slowing down your work.  Shoot me an email and I can also let you know if they are needed.
  5. Make sure Windows Updates are on and have been installed.  Type “Windows Updates” in the search bar (Win 8, 10) and check for Windows Updates.  Select any optional ones and, yes, install those too.  It will take time to download and then install.  Restart your system to apply the updates.  While you are updating, go ahead and allow that Javascript to update, too.
  6. Clean out the dust!  Dust can make your system run hotter than necessary.  Laptops are harder to clean due to space constraints, but a desktop has some simple screws to remove and usually captures the most dust anyways.  You can blow compressed air (or vacuum out) all the dust bunnies.  This will keep things running cooler and faster!

As always, if you need more help with your cleanup, please give My Computer Solutionz a call and we’ll help,  There’s no charge for a simple call or emailing your questions. We still give free quotes and recommendations.  We’re reasonable people and here to help.  Happy spring clean-up!

 

Check Out Our Annual Recycle Event!

Do you have old computers or parts that need recycling? 

April 12-22

We come and pickup your stuff, for free!

Click here for a pickup