There is some logic in thinking that when a new operating system is released for your computer the best thing you can do is upgrade…

Don't assume a Windows 10 upgrade is the best idea...

Don’t assume a Windows 10 upgrade is the best idea…

This is even a less of a hurdle when the new version is being offered for free. What have you got to lose?

And the fact is, for a number of years now many people have lived with dire warnings that they should keep their software up-to-date because new versions often close security holes.

However, a whole new version number of an operating system is a big step. Windows 10 has, as Microsoft intended, moved Windows on considerably. It’s fixed many of the things people didn’t like about Windows 8 (they skipped a version nine, in case you’re wondering what happened to it!).

Because we maintain a lot of computers running a variety of versions of Windows and because those computers are of differing ages and running a range of software combinations, we’ve had quite an insight into how the upgrade process is working – and it doesn’t always.

Rules of thumb

The simple message is this – if you can’t afford for all of your computers to suddenly stop doing what they are supposed to do to keep your business running, don’t go blindly into an update!

There are a couple of rules of thumb we’ve found it best to follow:

  • if your computers are more than 24 months old (or you’re not sure) don’t do the update;
  • if your computers are running Windows 7, don’t do the update without advice;
  • if your computers are running Windows 8, you’re in a better position, but if you have critical software that may not have been made compatible with Windows 10 yet, you guessed it… seek advice.
  • If you are running very standard, less than two-year-old machines with a Windows 8 version and industry standard business and productivity software, you are in the best position, but still take some care before pushing that update button.

Windows 10 is a move forward, but that doesn’t mean everyone should jump straight on the bandwagon without a bit of thought and preparation. It can save some big headaches down the line.