How To Upgrade Your Old Operating System With Windows 8.1

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       Features Of Windows OS

After an upgrade to Windows 8 operating system, many people criticized it for its poor functionalities. However, Windows 8.1 seems to be a much better operating system with fewer issues reported. So, how can you upgrade to this operating system? In this post, we will take you through the steps and find out how to upgrade to it from the various Windows versions.

From Windows 8

You might already know how to upgrade to Windows 8. Now, upgrading to Windows 8.1 is a simple task. It is also free. All those who have installed Windows 8 on their computers can make this upgrade free of cost. Before you start the upgrade process, take a backup of all the data in the computer. Make sure that your hard disk has free space of at least 3 GB. Now, go to the Microsoft Store. For this, you may open the Charms menu and choose the option Settings. Select Your account under settings and log in to the account. Choose the option Update to Windows 8.1 for free.

Sometimes, you may not find this option in Windows Store. This is because your operating system does not have the latest update installed in it. Therefore, download and install all updates available for the operating system. For this, go to the Settings menu and choose Change PC settings. Select the option Windows Update to download and install updates.

windows-8-logo-300x225

 Windows OS Upgrade

From Windows 7

Run Windows Upgrade Assistant to find out if your Windows 7 PC is ready for the upgrade. If it is, then purchase Windows 8.1 or Windows 8.1 Pro from the Windows Store or from your local retailer. The standard version will cost you 119.99 dollars while the Professional version is priced at 199.99 dollars. You will be able to move most of your apps, personal files and settings from Windows 7 to Windows 8.

From Windows Vista or Windows XP

The users of Windows Vista and Windows XP will have to carry out a clean installation of Windows 8.1 on their computers. That is, they will not be able to move their settings or files along with the upgrade. However, these users may move their files to an external device before the upgrade and then move it to Windows 8.1 after its installation.

We hope that this post has helped you to upgrade your operating system to the latest version of Windows 8.1.

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Taskbar Icons In Windows 8

Windows 8

               Features Of Windows 8

Most of you might have worked with the new operating system from Microsoft, Windows 8. While some of you might have liked it, some of you may have not. The operating system is just not like its predecessor, Windows 7. There are numerous changes in the operating system like the Start screen, introduction of apps, new task manager, charm bar etc.

You can find many other changes with the operating systems like the taskbar. You would find various icons in the taskbar, which you may not be familiar with. Now, in this post, we will find out how to work with these icons.

System tray

You might be wondering where the system tray in the task bar is. It is the white arrow present at the right end of the taskbar. You can setup the system tray and customize it as you wish.

Action center

So, which is the icon for action center? Do you see a white flag at the right end of the taskbar? It is the action center of your operating system. You will find various notifications from Microsoft by choosing this Action center. For instance, you will find notifications at the action center if the antivirus program is not updated or if the Windows updates are not turned on.

Battery icon

This icon would show up only if your computer has a battery in it. The battery icon shows the status of the battery in your computer. As the desktop computer does not come with a battery, you will not find this icon on the taskbar of your desktop computer.

Windows 7

          Windows 8 Upgrade

Network connection icon

The network icon can vary depending on the type of internet connection on your computer. That is, 3G connection would have a different icon and so do Wi-Fi connections. If airplane mode is available in your device and if you turn on the computer to this mode, the icon of an airplane would show up in the place of the network icon.

On-screen keyboard

A small keyboard icon in the taskbar is for launching the on-screen keyboard. You may turn on this feature from the Control Panel window under the option PC settings.

These are the major icons found in the Windows 8 taskbar. The taskbar allows you to add more icons to it. You may simply pin any number of program shortcuts to the taskbar by the simple drag and drop method.

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Will The End Of Windows 7 Mainstream Support Boost Windows 8 Sales

How Much To Upgrade To Windows 8

          About Windows 8 Price

In the last couple of months, Microsoft expected to see a significant increase in the Windows 8 sales because of the end of Windows XP support. But instead, most corporate users starting looking at the costs involved, enquiring how much to upgrade to Windows 8, and for updating the hardware to move on. Interestingly, most of them concluded that Windows 8 is not worth the trouble.

Windows 7 set to lose its mainstream support in 2015

Many of these corporate users started upgrading to Windows 7 instead of Windows 8. Though Microsoft really wants their corporate clients to switch from Windows XP, they expected them to purchase Windows 8, rather than going for Windows 7. It was particularly for this reason that Microsoft introduced an update to Windows 8 even before Windows XP support officially expired.

However, almost all of the Windows users out there, especially the corporate users, now consider Windows 8 as a failed OS. As far as they are concerned, they have only one option for making the upgrade from Windows XP – Windows 7. This is why, the deadline for the Windows 7 mainstream support is so important.

After the end of mainstream support, Windows 7 will have just five more years of extended support. Microsoft hopes that they might be able to convince XP and Windows 7 users to upgrade to Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 by pointing out this fact. Though Windows 7 enjoys more than 50% of the entire desktop OS market share at the moment, Microsoft has no plans to extend the end of support deadline set for the popular platform.

Windows 9

              Upgrade To Window 8

However, if Microsoft wants more users to upgrade to Windows 8, they must be willing to slash down its price. So, how much to upgrade to Windows 8 should cost then?

Even though Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 has very few takers in the market, Microsoft has kept its prices unchanged at $119.99 for the standard versions and $199.99 for Pro editions. It was recently reported that Microsoft is planning to release a free Windows 8.1 update for the smartphones and tablets, as they have to compete with Android in these two categories.

Providing Windows 8 as freeware for one platform, while keeping the price above the 100-dollar mark for another, will only erode the user base further. So, clearly Microsoft has to come up with something else, like Windows 9, to make things right.

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System Requirements And Recommendations For Windows 8

Windows 8

               Windows 8 Drivers

Windows 8 is one of the latest operating systems released in the year 2012 by Microsoft. This is a successor to Windows 7, which brought in a major change to the OS interface altogether. A major change in the user interface was made so that the OS could work better with touch screen devices. This new look has a name called the Metro GUI. The processing speed has been increased when compared with previous OSs. If you are looking forward to installing Windows-8 on your computer, here are some of the system requirements and recommendations.

Hardware Requirements To Load Windows-8

  • 1 GB RAM with 32-bit and 2 GB RAM with 64-bit
  • 16 GB hard disk space for 32-bit system or 20 GB hard disk space for 64-bit system
  • DirectX 9 with WDDM 1.0 graphics drivers or higher

Additional Hardware Requirements

  • Most of the PCs do not have UEFI BIOS, which is required for a secure boot. Nevertheless, all the latest machines come loaded with this. If UEFI BIOS is not available, you might as well get one for the PC to enable secure boot.
  • If the PC has Trusted Platform Module (TPM), BitLocker can work seamlessly. Even when the system has this feature, it might be necessary to enable it via the settings in BIOS. At the time of installation, a flash drive is required that meets the performance criteria.
  • A 64-bit system along with second level addresses translation (SLAT), including 2 GB additional RAM is required for Hyper-V. SLAT can be enabled through the BIOS settings.

    Operating System

                         Windows 8 Apps

  • Programming interfaces related to multimedia like DirectX 10 is required in the PC to enjoy the entire features of a game or any other software. You might require including graphics card for finest performance.
  • Instead of an upgrade, if you plan to do a clean install, then you should check with the manufacturer’s website to ensure that you install all the necessary drivers required. In most cases, laptops get a better battery life when they have a power-optimized driver, which is specific to each PC.

You can check if the PC that you use is compatible with Windows-8. Most of the PCs that run Windows 7 are compatible with Windows-8. Nevertheless, apart from this, if you are planning to switch to Windows 8, it might be better if you could get a new machine preloaded with the operating system.

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Accessing The Windows 8 Charms Menu

Windows 8

Using Windows 8

Microsoft released their latest flagship operating system Windows 8 to the market with much hype and expectations. However, due to some flaws in the design of the operating system, the operating system could not produce much sales in the market. The users who have installed the operating system found it pretty hard to work with, as the operating system had a new and retro styled user interface named as Metro. Metro user interface made use of tiles instead of the traditional icons and even though it provided a new look to the operating system, traditional computer users despised the operating system due to this unfamiliar design.

The main problem that traditional users found was that the operating system was hard to use with a mouse. The company cannot be blamed as they developed the operating system optimized for touch-based systems and not regular non-touch displays. Here we discuss how you can access the Charms menu in the operating system. The charms menu allows the users to make changes to the operating system settings. The Charms menu can slide out from the right hand side of the screen and the main contents of the menu are Search, Share, Start menu, Devices and Settings.

Open Charms Menu

Windows 8 Shortcuts

If you are having a touch screen computer, then it is pretty easy to open Charms menu, you just have to slide from the right most side of the screen. However, if you are using a non-touch laptop or desktop, you can launch Charms bar by clicking on the right most edge and then dragging to the left side. In a non-touch desktop or laptop, you can launch the charms bar by pressing the CTRL and C buttons simultaneously. You can also open the Charms bar by pressing and holding the Windows key found in the keyboard along with the C key.

Even though the operating system provides better ease of use while using with a tablet or a touch screen display, you can equally use the operating system on non-touch displays too. There is no need to sell your laptop if you are having trouble working with the newly installed Windows 8 operating system, as you will get used to it in a short time.

Microsoft provides a list of shortcuts in the Windows 8 help and support website that make it easy for you to work with the operating system. Get to know the various shortcuts available and you will be able to work like a Pro in no time!

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