Sunday, November 25, 2012

Windows 8 Upgrade

Windows 8 has been out for a month. I was reading reviews in order to make my decision whether to hold on to my favourite Windows 7 or jump into Metro interface. The reviews did not help at all as it was a 50-50 split between two extremes - hate it or love it! LoL. I was wondering which side will I be? I moved on to compare its features against Win7 Pro 64 bit on my Acer 1810TZ (yes, this Acer is still serving me well!). One of my requirements is the new Windows must support offline files sync, and I decided to dive into it with the promotional upgrade price USD$40 for Windows 8 Pro Edition.

The upgrade process is quite intuitive. First, head to this link and click "Download Pro...". That will download an upgrade assistant to check compatibility. Before you run the upgrade assistant, make sure you have:
  • checked the system requirements.
  • Windows 8 product key - copy it to a paper, you might need to enter it during the upgrade process.
  • internet connection - you need to download 2GB files.
  • thumb drive with minimum 2GB space - to create a backup installer. Data inside will be formatted during the disk creation process.
  • minimum 20GB of free space on system drive (drive C)
  • backup, backup, backup - backup your files off the PC. Or use Windows' system repair utility to create an image in case you need to revert.

Run the installer after download and it will begin the upgrade process...


The result...


Click "See compatibility details" and review more. You might want to think twice if one of your core programs is listed as incompatible with Windows 8. If none, hit Next...


As the installer does not give a clue where it stores the downloaded files, I recommend to select "install by creating media" option to create a backup copy of the installer. This will be the "emergency restore disk" that you usually get in CD / DVD format when purchase a new PC. Alternatively, browse to your hard drive and look for a folder named ESD...


Copy the content of this folder to the root of the thumb drive. You will get the similar emergency restore disk. Go to Folder Options in Control Panel to "show hidden files" if you can't locate the folder.
On last check, the installer verify the free space on the system drive (typically drive C)...


And finally the system is ready for an upgrade...


Don't be over excited. You need to be cautious if you have the same screen like above. "Don't keep anything" means fresh install. Your customizations and installed programs in Windows 7 will not be migrated to Windows 8. Click change selection to see what other options you have.
The upgrade begins if you click install and your PC will be rebooted...


Sit back and relax. You will be asked to personalize your Windows 8 towards the end of the upgrade...


You're just 2 more steps to complete...


Yes, remember this! There are treasures in every corner of Windows 8 screen!

Last step...


The installer installs the bundled apps such as Calendar, Mail etc including Desktop. The "programs" we used to in pre-Windows 8 era is now called "apps", and Desktop is one of the apps.
Finally...


Windows 8 is up and running on my Acer 1810TZ!

p/s: check out my other Windows 8 related posts.