In case you forgot – or, more precisely, in case you happen to be a Windows 7 or 8 PC user who somehow hasn’t turned on your computer since last July – Microsoft Corp.’s offer of a free upgrade to Windows 10 officially ends this Friday, July 29.

Why the 29th? Because it will mark the one-year anniversary of Windows 10’s official release, the 15-month anniversary of Microsoft revealing its plan to have Windows 10 installed on 1 billion devices by 2018, and – perhaps not coincidentally – five days before the OS’s next major upgrade, the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, is released.

Reserve your free Windows 10 upgrade today!

Since releasing Windows 10 last year to largely positive reviews (including our own) Microsoft has already exceeded a third of its goal, with more than 350 million devices worldwide now running the OS, and users logging more than 135 billion hours – an all-time high level of engagement, according to the company.

Part of the reason for the high adoption rate, of course, was Microsoft’s decision to release Windows 10 as a free upgrade for Windows 7 and Windows 8 users – who, in case they forgot, were gently reminded the free upgrade period was coming to an end this week with a full-screen notification that appeared before their computers booted up.

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As for what users can expect from the anniversary update, Microsoft has promised built-in enterprise-level security protection, led by Windows Hello for Apps, which will allow users to sign in using biometrics such as fingerprint or eye-scans, and what it calls “advanced threat protection” features for the company’s free anti-malware service, Windows Defender…

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Windows Ink, which will allow users to use an electronic pen to “write” on-screen…

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…and improvements to the company’s signature digital assistant, Cortana, including one new feature that allows users to issue commands from the lock screen, and another that lets Cortana recall key information such as a loyalty program number or scheduled task.

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Windows 7 and 8 users who stubbornly refuse to upgrade before July 29 will be charged $149 for the home edition or $250 for the business-centric pro edition.

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  • gisabun

    More like $140 for Home.
    Won’t get to 1 billion after 3 years as Windows Phone sales are bombing…

  • Sheeva

    Upgraded one laptop from 8.1 to 10 and am regretting it. Didn’t know could revert back within 30 days after upgrade. Lots of network issues, printing issues, updating without permission and now not playing “playing” well with some older apps. And yes, the laptop was fully qualified hardware-wise and have been monitory various vendors for Win10 updates – drivers, etc. No, Win10 is not good for EVERYONE – just the lucky ones that have been successful to date with their experience. Have moved most and will be moving all remaining current Window units to Ubuntu – testing was EXCELLENT.

    • koconor100

      You should never upgrade your operating system.
      You should just wait until it’s time to buy a new computer , and use whatever OS comes with it, and then put Linux on the old box.

      That’s always worked well for me.

  • SavageNarce

    …until Microsoft announces that their Win10 servers were overwhelmed by the demand, so the offer has been extended to the end of August.

  • koconor100

    wow, “offered free upgrade” , “Enterprise protection”

    You’d never know from reading this article they rammed it down peoples throat even though they were screaming “No no no no no !!!!!” , and it is infamous for spying on everything you do on it and reporting it all back to microsoft , with an End user license agreement that basically says “we do whatever we like with it and tough luck for you”

    Wow…just wow… most misleading article ever !

    • Mirrorstone

      I think we were quite clear that it had been rammed down users’ throats.