I finally did it...Windows 10 free upgrade on the last day!

13Gigatons

Diamond Member
Apr 19, 2005
6,525
49
106
#1
The new calculator is nice....yup definitely worth the two hour install time.
 
Mar 9, 2005
14,140
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#2
The new calculator is nice....yup definitely worth the two hour install time.
Now that you've upgraded and confirmed activation you can clean install 10 on your system without the need for a key and it will automatically activate once finished. Installing from a thumb drive should only take a few minutes depending on your system. I never want to use a dvd for installation ever again.
 

bruceb

Diamond Member
Aug 20, 2004
8,858
3
106
#3
Not going to try and install Win 10 on my old Dell Dimension 8200 P4 1.8Ghz 2GB RAM as that would only take the 32 bit and the Nvidia driver would need a special manual install. Best that machine could do is Win 10 x86 (32 bit) .. But I do have a Retail License for Windows 7 Ultimate (it will work with 32 or 64 bit version) and that should always be able to activate Windows 10 if I need to. And when I finally do buy a newer computer, it will probably already have Windows 10 installed. I could take my Windows 7 Ultimate Key and make it Windows 10 Pro, if it comes with Windows 10 Home
 

bbhaag

Diamond Member
Jul 2, 2011
4,309
147
126
#4
Trolling about the new calc is so 2015 bro....Keep it real and bitch about the the constant spying that M$ is doing.....:rolleyes:
 

13Gigatons

Diamond Member
Apr 19, 2005
6,525
49
106
#5
Trolling about the new calc is so 2015 bro....Keep it real and bitch about the the constant spying that M$ is doing.....:rolleyes:
Yes..the first screen with all the privacy settings is a little bit disconcerting. Definitely install one of those anti-spyware apps.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#8
I think they going to keep extending it or at least offer it for free on some occasions even if this one expires now.
The download link from the accessibility page was gone, but I still have the installer squirreled away in my archive (Windows10Upgrade24074.exe, I'll leave it up here for a month, MD5 is A840132C5FAB5018F6BB0AE4C784B9D5)...tested it today on an old Dell with Win7, worked just fine! So at least as of January 24th, 2018, the free upgrade servers are still working for downloading & activation. To be clear, I had a machine with Windows 7 (activated), ran the Win10 upgrade app, and booted up to an activated copy of Windows 10. So it's still alive if you need it!

One quick note, if you get the error that "api-ms-win-core-libraryloader-l1-1-1.dll is missing" when you try to install the Win10 upgrade, then you just need to copy a DLL over, because Microsoft goofed up the imaging deployment API (I think it's related specifically to the 24074 version of the upgrade executable, but it may be due to a lack of updates on some of the machines I work on, dunno). Anyway, the fix is just to copy the wimgapi.dll in C:\Windows\System32 to C:\Windows10Upgrade and retry the upgrade.

Note, the Win10 upgrader will download about 3.5 gigs worth of files for the upgrade initially, and then do the installation, and then some reboots, and then the sign-in, and then some more updates, and then the desktop. Remember that you don't need to use your email address for sign-on (assuming you're not migrating over a local account already), you can bypass all of that (using the small text links during the account setup process) and just create a standard local logon account (with or without a password, whatever you prefer). Also, once activated, Windows 10 will be permanently licensed to that machine through the cloud, so you can use the Media Creation Tool to make a disc or a bootable USB installer as needed, or even easier, just do a full wipe & reset directly from within Win10. On a lot of these older Win7/Win8 machines, I'll do the free upgrade, make sure Win10 is activated, then do a full drive erase & reset (takes awhile) & setup the machine from scratch, for convenience. From there, you can set everything up (your software etc.) & do a full disk image using Macrium, if you'd like.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#9
The download link from the accessibility page was gone, but I still have the installer squirreled away in my archive (Windows10Upgrade24074.exe, I'll leave it up here for a month, MD5 is A840132C5FAB5018F6BB0AE4C784B9D5)...tested it today on an old Dell with Win7, worked just fine! So at least as of January 24th, 2018, the free upgrade servers are still working for downloading & activation. To be clear, I had a machine with Windows 7 (activated), ran the Win10 upgrade app, and booted up to an activated copy of Windows 10. So it's still alive if you need it!

One quick note, if you get the error that "api-ms-win-core-libraryloader-l1-1-1.dll is missing" when you try to install the Win10 upgrade, then you just need to copy a DLL over, because Microsoft goofed up the imaging deployment API (I think it's related specifically to the 24074 version of the upgrade executable, but it may be due to a lack of updates on some of the machines I work on, dunno). Anyway, the fix is just to copy the wimgapi.dll in C:\Windows\System32 to C:\Windows10Upgrade and retry the upgrade.

Note, the Win10 upgrader will download about 3.5 gigs worth of files for the upgrade initially, and then do the installation, and then some reboots, and then the sign-in, and then some more updates, and then the desktop. Remember that you don't need to use your email address for sign-on (assuming you're not migrating over a local account already), you can bypass all of that (using the small text links during the account setup process) and just create a standard local logon account (with or without a password, whatever you prefer). Also, once activated, Windows 10 will be permanently licensed to that machine through the cloud, so you can use the Media Creation Tool to make a disc or a bootable USB installer as needed, or even easier, just do a full wipe & reset directly from within Win10. On a lot of these older Win7/Win8 machines, I'll do the free upgrade, make sure Win10 is activated, then do a full drive erase & reset (takes awhile) & setup the machine from scratch, for convenience. From there, you can set everything up (your software etc.) & do a full disk image using Macrium, if you'd like.
Two dumb tricks:

1. Due to the large download size, I wanted to make a copy of the installer to save download time. I was also curious if the installer downloaded files custom to the computer hardware & OS version, or if it was generic. I made an ISO out of the C:\Windows10Upgrade and loaded it on another machine (downloaded on a Dell desktop running Win7 Pro, copied to a Lenovo laptop running Win8 Home), ran the installer app within the folder, and it worked just fine. So just FYI if you need to upgrade multiple machines, small timesaver there!

2. If you are upgrading similar machines (ex. HP's or Dell's or whatever, with BIOS-activated copies of Windows), then just make an image (ex. Macrium) of the entire machine plus the ~3.5gb Win10upgrade folder for faster automatic upgrades. I'd imagine you can re-use a small SSD between machines without issue (if you have older machines with slower mechanical drives) to speed up the installs. I work on batches of similar models from time to time...not sure how much longer the free Win10 upgrade activation servers will be available, so upgrade everything you can while you can to get the free digital entitlement, even if you don't want the upgrade right now! (just image your current OS installation to keep it & roll back).

I am not a fan of Win10's automatic updates (although I understand why they do them...system security is a big deal these days in light of the NSA tools hack, Spectre & Meltdown, etc.), but gaming is better under Windows 10 (vs. Win7) & it's actually a pretty stable OS, plus the built-in free antivirus is decent.
 
Mar 9, 2005
14,140
80
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#10
Using the installer to make an iso is good thinking. I just keep the latest version of 10 on a thumbdrive so I can use it on any pc in the house at a moments notice and it only takes just a few minutes to get a clean install up and running. I cringe at the thought of trying to install windows from a dvd as it takes forever and a day to perform.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#11
Using the installer to make an iso is good thinking. I just keep the latest version of 10 on a thumbdrive so I can use it on any pc in the house at a moments notice and it only takes just a few minutes to get a clean install up and running. I cringe at the thought of trying to install windows from a dvd as it takes forever and a day to perform.
Yeah, you just have to remember to grab it before it starts installation. The only reason I noticed it was because of the DLL error I ran into!

I keep the official full installer on a USB stick as well. Very convenient!
 

WilliamM2

Golden Member
Jun 14, 2012
1,656
34
91
#12
Two dumb tricks:

1. Due to the large download size, I wanted to make a copy of the installer to save download time. I was also curious if the installer downloaded files custom to the computer hardware & OS version, or if it was generic. I made an ISO out of the C:\Windows10Upgrade and loaded it on another machine (downloaded on a Dell desktop running Win7 Pro, copied to a Lenovo laptop running Win8 Home), ran the installer app within the folder, and it worked just fine. So just FYI if you need to upgrade multiple machines, small timesaver there!

2. If you are upgrading similar machines (ex. HP's or Dell's or whatever, with BIOS-activated copies of Windows), then just make an image (ex. Macrium) of the entire machine plus the ~3.5gb Win10upgrade folder for faster automatic upgrades. I'd imagine you can re-use a small SSD between machines without issue (if you have older machines with slower mechanical drives) to speed up the installs. I work on batches of similar models from time to time...not sure how much longer the free Win10 upgrade activation servers will be available, so upgrade everything you can while you can to get the free digital entitlement, even if you don't want the upgrade right now! (just image your current OS installation to keep it & roll back).
Why wouldn't you just use the media creation tool, and put the installer on a USB drive?

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#13
Why wouldn't you just use the media creation tool, and put the installer on a USB drive?

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
Because we're talking about two separate things here:

1. You can install Windows 10 via a USB stick using the official Microsoft Media Creation Tool, for a fresh install of the OS on any computer. However, you will either (1) need a license key to activate it, or (2) have previously had it activated (via a license key or digital entitlement certificate).

2. The free upgrade installation tool (i.e. Windows10Upgrade24074.exe) is a separate tool that does several things: (1) it verifies that your computer can be upgraded to Windows 10 (from Win7 or Win8), (2) it downloads the Windows 10 upgrade files, and (3) it performs the upgrade & activates your hardware configuration in the cloud (i.e. the digital entitlement certificate deal).

What I was referring to was the upgrade tool, which downloads the Windows 10 upgrade installation files to the C:\Windows10Upgrade directory when you run the executable. If you capture that folder (copy it, zip it up, make an ISO of it, whatever - anything to duplicate it), you can copy that folder to another Win7 or Win8 computer to run the free upgrade & activation software without having to re-download it again. This is a trick only useful for very specific situations, like when you have multiple computers running Win7/8 that you want to slide into Win10 using the free upgrade (because the servers are still running, for the time being, even though Microsoft is no longer officially offering the free upgrade path or upgrade EXE download tool).

Hopefully that clears it up! Wasn't meaning to be confusing.
 

WilliamM2

Golden Member
Jun 14, 2012
1,656
34
91
#14
Because we're talking about two separate things here:

1. You can install Windows 10 via a USB stick using the official Microsoft Media Creation Tool, for a fresh install of the OS on any computer. However, you will either (1) need a license key to activate it, or (2) have previously had it activated (via a license key or digital entitlement certificate).

2. The free upgrade installation tool (i.e. Windows10Upgrade24074.exe) is a separate tool that does several things: (1) it verifies that your computer can be upgraded to Windows 10 (from Win7 or Win8), (2) it downloads the Windows 10 upgrade files, and (3) it performs the upgrade & activates your hardware configuration in the cloud (i.e. the digital entitlement certificate deal).

What I was referring to was the upgrade tool, which downloads the Windows 10 upgrade installation files to the C:\Windows10Upgrade directory when you run the executable. If you capture that folder (copy it, zip it up, make an ISO of it, whatever - anything to duplicate it), you can copy that folder to another Win7 or Win8 computer to run the free upgrade & activation software without having to re-download it again. This is a trick only useful for very specific situations, like when you have multiple computers running Win7/8 that you want to slide into Win10 using the free upgrade (because the servers are still running, for the time being, even though Microsoft is no longer officially offering the free upgrade path or upgrade EXE download tool).

Hopefully that clears it up! Wasn't meaning to be confusing.
Because we're talking about two separate things here:

1. You can install Windows 10 via a USB stick using the official Microsoft Media Creation Tool, for a fresh install of the OS on any computer. However, you will either (1) need a license key to activate it, or (2) have previously had it activated (via a license key or digital entitlement certificate).

2. The free upgrade installation tool (i.e. Windows10Upgrade24074.exe) is a separate tool that does several things: (1) it verifies that your computer can be upgraded to Windows 10 (from Win7 or Win8), (2) it downloads the Windows 10 upgrade files, and (3) it performs the upgrade & activates your hardware configuration in the cloud (i.e. the digital entitlement certificate deal).
I used the media creation tool to create install media, and then used that media for the free upgrades on all the computers I've upgraded, and also for clean installs. Done it that way since 2015.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#15
I used the media creation tool to create install media, and then used that media for the free upgrades on all the computers I've upgraded, and also for clean installs. Done it that way since 2015.
Tell me more! Maybe I'm just having a mental hiccup. I'm assuming the MCT auto-detects the licensed Win7/8 installation on the boot drive & then goes through with the activation process? I have a faint memory of doing this a loooooong time ago, but I've always just used the upgrade executable for convenience. I've got a few old Win7 boxes kicking around, I'll give the MCT stick activation method a shot tomorrow, thanks!
 
Mar 9, 2005
14,140
80
136
#16
I just verified that the windows assistive technologies upgrade pathway is gone so if you failed to take advantage of the free upgrade you will now have to pay for it. This quote is directly from that page.

Thank you for your interest in Windows 10. The free upgrade offer extension for Windows 7 and Windows 8 customers who use assistive technologies expired on December 31, 2017. As an alternative, Windows 10 software and devices are available for purchase from retail and online stores. In case you have other questions, we are providing some references to resources and frequently asked questions regarding assistive technologies and Windows 10 that might be of interest.

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/acc...459594)(TnL5HPStwNw-lm8Q2swn6qPr4XqnFtvzgg)()
 

bruceb

Diamond Member
Aug 20, 2004
8,858
3
106
#17
Will full Retail Windows 7 Keys continue to be able to activate Windows 10 in the future ?
 
Mar 9, 2005
14,140
80
136
#18
Will full Retail Windows 7 Keys continue to be able to activate Windows 10 in the future ?
When I had to speak to MS support on the phone a couple of days ago I used the 7 key for validation that the hardware change I made to my mom's pc was legal so they issued a new 10 key for it.
 

bruceb

Diamond Member
Aug 20, 2004
8,858
3
106
#19
In my case, my copy of Windows 7 has never been used. It is a full retail license of Win 7 Ultimate
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#20
I just verified that the windows assistive technologies upgrade pathway is gone so if you failed to take advantage of the free upgrade you will now have to pay for it. This quote is directly from that page.

Thank you for your interest in Windows 10. The free upgrade offer extension for Windows 7 and Windows 8 customers who use assistive technologies expired on December 31, 2017. As an alternative, Windows 10 software and devices are available for purchase from retail and online stores. In case you have other questions, we are providing some references to resources and frequently asked questions regarding assistive technologies and Windows 10 that might be of interest.

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/acc...459594)(TnL5HPStwNw-lm8Q2swn6qPr4XqnFtvzgg)()
See my post above - they removed the link for the upgrade installer, but it still works just fine FYI.
 
Mar 9, 2005
14,140
80
136
#21
See my post above - they removed the link for the upgrade installer, but it still works just fine FYI.
Right if you have it already, however the latest windows 10 installer is 9252. When MS gets around to deactivating that server it will no longer work either. Hopefully they will be as lax with it as they've been with enforcing the deadline.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#22
Right if you have it already, however the latest windows 10 installer is 9252. When MS gets around to deactivating that server it will no longer work either. Hopefully they will be as lax with it as they've been with enforcing the deadline.
Fingers crossed they stay lax about it...I have a zillion customers on 'older' computers who haven't upgraded yet.
 

bruceb

Diamond Member
Aug 20, 2004
8,858
3
106
#23
I don't get what they are saying about the activation servers. If you updated to Win 10 with a Digital Entitlement, you should always be able to reinstall and activate any release of Win 10 .. Your license should never be tied to just a specific release of any Win 10 versions.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#24
I don't get what they are saying about the activation servers. If you updated to Win 10 with a Digital Entitlement, you should always be able to reinstall and activate any release of Win 10 .. Your license should never be tied to just a specific release of any Win 10 versions.
There are 2 types of servers:

1. The digital entitlement servers, which let you reinstall & activate Windows 10

2. The upgrade servers, which check for a valid (activated) Win7 or Win8 installation, and then give you a free Windows 10 digital entitlement certificate. This was a special, limited-time offer from Microsoft to entice people to upgrade from older versions of Windows (for free).

Microsoft officially removed all links to the upgrade installer for #2, but the servers are still active, so if you have an older computer that you want to upgrade to 10 for free, it still works.
 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,805
273
126
#25
Quick update, the upgrade path is still working!

Also an update on my speed-upgrade system: I have an ISO that contains a copy of the Win10Upgrade folder (pre-install), plus wimgapi.dll for older installations, which I use to quickly upgrade Win7 computers. You do need a network connection, as it verifies the download against the online server, but this takes under 2 minutes (rather than having to re-download all 3+ gigs of files). I just did an upgrade from Win7 on an old i3 desktop with a mechanical hard drive; desktop installation took 25 minutes & full install (after reboot, when it does the "working on update" bit, to get to the Win10 setup prompt) took 40 minutes total (~15 minutes to grab the updates after the upgrade reboot). Not bad! Everything activated just fine too.
 


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