Step by Step Upgrade to Windows 10

Here’s my first step by step upgrade to Windows 10 experience:


First I already pre-registered my laptop for the upgrade. See my blog about how to do that.

Second, just in case, I backed up all my files, both in the cloud and on a local external drive.

Third, I paused my antivirus protection.

Fourth, I plugged in my laptop because I knew this was going to take some time.


I started by using the windows 10 upgrade app. Immediately got this spectacularly unhelpful error message:

Windows 10 upgrade error

Doesn’t that take the cake for useless? No error number. No details. No link to more information.

I suspect the Microsoft upgrade server are overwhelmed doling out requests for the upgrade right now (writing this the evening of July 29th the day of the release).

Not deterred I quickly found this tool for downloading the Windows 10 media and burned the file to DVD. You can also use this tool with a USB drive (3GB space required) if you don’t have a DVD drive on your computer.

Starting the Install

Windows 10 upgrade

The upgrade does a lot making sure you’re ready to install. It checks for updates. Then it makes sure you’re ready (this screen above) and then it checks for updates again. It also checks to make sure you have enough disk space. Truly makes you wonder what was the point of that Windows 10 upgrade app if it didn’t check a) if your computer was ready and b) made sure you had enough disk space.

It took about 30 minutes to get to this screen:

Windows 10 upgrade

And another ten minutes before the first reboot.

After the reboot

Once the laptop rebooted, I was greeted by a black screen with a round percentage counter. And a cheerful message to “sit back and relax”. I timed how long it took to get to 10%. From that I figured out I had at least an hour before the upgrade would need me to do anything so I went for a walk.

It was 60 minutes before the login screen showed up. But it still wasn’t finished. After logging in I was prompted to change my default apps for Photos, Music and Browser to the new Windows 10 apps. I declined for all but the new browser.

Then I was prompted to chose the Express Settings for Windows 10. Except there was no cancel or decline button to choose. The express settings turn off Do Not Track setting in your browser. I haven’t explored what else it mucked up yet.

From the completion of the black screen, logging on and setting up the apps it took almost another hour. It might have been a bit slower because temporarily unplugged the laptop so I could move it to the kitchen counter while I made supper.

Total upgrade time was just over two hours. That’s on a laptop with 4GB of RAM, Intel i3 1.40Ghz processor and tons of disk space.

It’s still asking me impertinent questions as I open different Windows apps so I figure there’s still about another 30 minutes of configuration to do.

I will blog more about actual using Windows in another post.

Here’s what the desktop looks like now:

Windows 10