As many of you tech enthusiasts may know, today Microsoft released Windows 8. Windows 8 brings a new interface with styled tiles. You might be buying a new Windows 8 ready computer. Or, like me, you might be updating your already perfect computer to Windows 8.
Windows 8 has a lot of new changes. Most notably is the new Start screen, which appears automatically when you turn on your computer. Also, there is now no Start menu like on the previous versions of Windows. Below, I’ve given some FAQ’s for your upgrade to Windows 8.
Q. From which versions of Windows can I upgrade to Windows 8?
According to Microsoft, you will able to upgrade your PC if you’re on Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7.
Q. How much will the upgrade cost?
If you have a computer with the any of the above operating systems purchased before 2nd June 2012, you can get the upgrade for $ 39.99.
For new non-Windows 8 system purchased between June 2 and January 31, 2013, Microsoft will offer the upgrade to Windows 8 Pro for $14.99.
Q. Will I lose all my old programs and apps when I upgrade to Windows 8?
As Microsoft says: “You will be able to upgrade from any consumer edition of Windows 7 to Windows 8 Pro and bring everything along which includes your Windows settings, personal files, and apps. If you are upgrading from Windows Vista, you will be able to bring along your Windows settings and personal files, and if you are upgrading from Windows XP you will only be able to bring along your personal files.”
Q. Will my old hardware and software work with Windows 8?
Most applications that work in Windows 7 will work in Windows 8. If you are upgrading from Windows XP or Vista, then you will have to reinstall your applications and programs. Microsoft also has a Compatibility Center website from where you can check if specific hardware or software applications work with Windows 8.
Q. Can I buy the Windows 8 upgrade on a DVD or any other physical media?
A boxed version of Windows 8 with a DVD will be available for $ 69.99. If you purchase the downloadable upgrade, you will have the choice of purchasing a backup DVD for $15 plus shipping and handling. The downloadable upgrade installation will also let you create your own Windows 8 DVD or bootable USB, for no charge.
Q. What are the hardware requirements for Windows 8?
The basic hardware requirements for Windows 8 is outlined by Microsoft in this blog post:
- 1 GHz or faster processor
- 1 GB RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
- 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
Microsoft has also said:
“One new element to Windows 8 is the requirement that Metro style applications have a minimum of 1024×768 screen resolution, and 1366×768 for the snap feature.” The Snap feature refers to Windows 8’s new feature of automatically resizing and positioning application Windows when you drag them to the side of the screen.
Q. What about other Windows 8 versions?
Till now, Microsoft has only announced four Windows 8 versions, and only 2 of them (Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro) will be available to consumers. Windows RT will only come with tablets, while an Enterprise version will only be sold with with large-volume corporate PC purchases. Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows 8 Enterprise will be available in both 32 bit and 64 bit versions with 64 bit being the most common. Microsoft has not yet announced pricing for a Vanilla Windows 8 version.
Q. What is the difference between Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro?
As ITProPortal points out: “Windows 8 is the standard edition, Windows 8 Pro is for the advanced user requiring more features and Windows RT (Runtime) is an ARM powered OS that is specifically intended for mobile computing.
The main differences between Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro are advanced encryption features, the ability to sideload Windows Store apps and other business-focussed features like Group Policy. ”
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