Microsoft So Wants You to Upgrade to Windows 10 That They’ll Bet You a New Laptop

3045241646_8a75a77dc3_bMicrosoft has moved on from interrupting news broadcasts, ruining businesses, and tricking people with Windows 10 upgrades. Now MS is offering free in-store upgrades, and dangling the promise of a free Dell laptop if they can’t get it done the same day.

From WinBeta:

Maybe in realizing they’ve probably maxed out getting as many people as possible to download the upgrade, Microsft is taking an in-person approach to promoting the free offer. Specifically, Microsoft wants to bet you a free brand new Dell Inspiron 15 that they can upgrade your old PC to Windows 10 in the same day you bring it into a Microsoft Store.

The bet is that if you bring your old PC to an Answer Desk at a Microsoft Store, they will take care of the upgrade process for your for free, and have your computer ready by the end of the day. If your computer isn’t ready by the end of the day, then you get a free Dell Inspiron 15.

I have no intention of updating my main laptop (I have even used the trick to block the forced upgrade), but this is still a tempting offer.

I made the mistake last year of not working hard enough to talk my mother out of getting a Win10 laptop, and she still hasn’t forgiven me. (I stopped just short of screaming and shouting, but now I see I should have skipped that and gone directly to canceling her credit cards and hiding her check book.)

That said, I think I’ll still take MS up on their offer. I have a couple MS stores nearby, and a backup laptop, so I am tempted to see if I can get a free laptop.

Depending on which Inspiron model MS is giving away, this is anywhere from a $300 to a $600 bet that they can upgrade your laptop the same day. Based on the number of complaints I have heard about Windows 10, I don’t think Microsoft’s techs can pull it off – not if they also have to make sure all the drivers work.

And with a backup laptop to gamble with, don’t you think it’s worth a shot?

mage by Aiko

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Karl17 July, 2016

    Read the fine print. I’ll bet it just says the store techs will “install Windows 10,” not “install Windows 10 and get it working.”

  2. Mackay Bell17 July, 2016

    Boy, Windows must have a great future if you have to beg, trick and force people into upgrading. Reminds me of the great Studebaker car company. People loved the cars they made so much they stopped buying new ones. Sounds like Windows future.

  3. Thomas17 July, 2016

    I actually just tried and failed to put Win 10 on my laptop. According to a MS drone, HP hasn’t released Win 10 drivers, so no go. I wasn’t even planning to use Win 10 anyway; I intended to upgrade only to get the free Win 10 license in case I needed it later, then switch back.

    I would try this out, but my computer isn’t eligible due to bad battery.

    1. Nate Hoffelder17 July, 2016

      I bet I will be in the same situation with my Lenovo laptop. It’s powerful enough to run Windows 10 – if the drivers exist. But it’s four years old, so I’d bet that Lenovo hasn’t bothered.

      1. Thomas17 July, 2016

        Not necessarily. It depends on the original hardware. A friend has a Sony that is older than mine that updated with no problems, even though Sony discontinued the VAIO line two years ago. I guess that HP uses some oddball components and doesn’t do much software support.

  4. Steve17 July, 2016

    Can you please share the trick you used to block the forced upgrade?

    1. Nate Hoffelder17 July, 2016

      Here’s what I used:

      It not only makes the nagging update icon vanish, it can also keep Windows from installing any part of Win10.

      1. Never1017 July, 2016

        GWX is an inferior/hackish method of blocking Windows 10. What you want is to use Never10:

        The details of what it does can be read here:

        Never10 uses the official Microsoft method (the link to the exact Microsoft Knowledgebase article is in the details). All it does is set the two registry values that will prevent Windows 7 from updating.

        1. Nate Hoffelder17 July, 2016

          Thanks for the alternate method!

  5. Lynne Connolly17 July, 2016

    I’m really enjoying Windows 10. It stays in the background and does what it’s supposed to do. I turned off the invasive stuff, and it’s working fine.
    If you do a clean install, the upgrade should take less than an hour.
    If Windows pulls some nasty trick or other, then I have Unix waiting for me. But I don’t think they will.

  6. Glinda Harrison17 July, 2016

    I have had my shiny new Windows 10 desktop for 10 days and still don’t have everything working that worked on my Windows 7 computer. And I am not too sure about the upgrade to get the license. Microsoft sneak installed Windows 10 on my husband’s computer and I had to roll it back. When I checked afterwards, no licence was reserved. Personally, I am wondering if that is just another trick to get people to download Windows 10….

  7. Barry17 July, 2016

    I’ve upgraded four of my own laptops and one desktop to Windows 10 and 3 of my tablets, as well as several for my neighbors. None have had any problems. All have worked just fine right away.

    The laptops and desktops were Windows 7. The tablets were Windows 8 or 8.1. All my neighbors comptuers were Windows 7.

    I’ve been using Windows 10 since the free upgrade became available and it’s a big improvement over Windows 8. So far I don’t think it’s much of an improvement over Windows 7 but I find it about as good and sometmes better.


  8. Richard Adin18 July, 2016

    I want to upgrade my desktop but every time I try, it fails. It gets 99% done then fails. Some unnamed file is missing. I suspect part of the problem is that I have Win 7 Enterprise. I bought Win 7 home and tried to down version but that unnamed file problem keeps popping up.

  9. Feda18 July, 2016

    I switched to Linux and I’m not looking back.

  10. DebbyS18 July, 2016

    I have a mix of old software (like Word2000), shareware and freeware on both Windows 7 Home laptop and desktop I work on. As I don’t know if Windows 10 would play nicely with any of them or my peripherals (printer, DVD burner, etc.), I am loath to try to install Win10 and discover I have to buy new versions of everything as well as find drivers for old hardware (a +12-year-old HP LaserJet, for example). So I’m sticking with what works. Probably the only way I’ll ever get Win10 is through buying a new computer. Also, of course MS has no store in my state. Well, it’s not like we have any high-tech industries or labs here… oh, yes, we do (Los Alamos, Sandia, lots of universities), but they all probably have tech departments that can guard against unwanted uploads or figure out how to install them if wanted.

  11. Rob18 July, 2016

    I have only not been able to upgrade one computer to Windows 10. It is currently running Vista and there are no Windows 7 drivers. So, I am not going to spend money to get it to Windows 7 and hope that it will work good enough to even try the upgrade to Windows 10. Other than that, I have not had a single problem with Windows 10 on my computers. It is stable and runs a good or better than Windows 7/8.1.

    If anyone is happy with their current Windows version and hopefully it is still getting security patches, then they should stay where they are. Otherwise, run the update advisor and see if you can upgrade before you have to pay for it.

  12. Lynne Connolly18 July, 2016

    I’ve upgraded 7 computers to Win 10 to date, from either 7 or 8.1 and none of them had problems. I think it might be because I prefer to do a clean upgrade and then reinstall the programs I need to. It’s like a spring clean for the computer.
    The oldest was an Asus EEE 1005HA that I took on my travels for years, which had an old Atom CPU. I only did it to see if it would work. I had the original disks handy for a restore, but it actually made the EEE faster than it used to be.
    I’d say as well as doing a compatibility check, do a BELARC printout and make sure you have all your paid program licenses handy. Before you upgrade, you could put a bootable media on a flash drive.

  13. Barney19 July, 2016

    Nate, what sort of complaints have you heard about Win10? Are they user-unfriendly issues, or privacy/security issues? It’s mainly the latter that concern me.

    The fact that Microsoft is so brazenly desperate to reach a billion upgrades is the main reason I won’t consider using Win10. Looks like Microsoft wants to rival Facebook, Google, etc. in the data-mining racket.

    1. Nate Hoffelder19 July, 2016

      For one thing, my mom read the fine print on the EULA, and she thinks that MS is going to charge everyone for the “free” copy of Windows 10. There’s also all the security and privacy issues in the EULA.

  14. Lynne Connolly19 July, 2016

    They won’t charge, I’m fairly sure of that. Microsoft is concentrating on the enterprise environment – they’ll certainly charge them.
    There are so many peripheral advantages that the initial charge to the consumer isn’t worth it. Plus, they needed the goodwill after Windows 8.1. Of course they’ll put the possibility into the EULA, because they want to cover every eventuality.
    Privacy concerns are dealt with fairly easily. You need to decide what you want to share with Microsoft, and what you don’t, and tailor your installation accordingly. The ultimate, of course, is to switch off the Internet entirely. As soon as you switch it on you’re sharing something with somebody.
    If they do change their minds and decide to charge “rent,” I’m moving to Unix. But until they do, I’m happy where I am. They can’t charge retrospectively.

    1. Nate Hoffelder19 July, 2016

      The Solitaire with ads and subscription suggests otherwise:

      I think MS is going to pull the same trick with Win10.

  15. Lynne Connolly19 July, 2016

    I don’t think they will. Windows 10 is an operating system, not an app. Office, Apps, Games, they are all separate divisions in Microsoft with their own pricing models. Ever since Satya Nadella took over, they’ve been working towards that, instead of having one big humungous company.
    If they start pushing ads, it will be the first OS to do so, and someone will work out how to block them with a 3rd party program or a series of registry tweaks.
    But while it’s free and I can get into the registry to alter it the way I want, I’m sticking with Windows. If they start shenigans, I’m off to Linux. And so will a lot of other people. Mint and Ubuntu are very nice distros. Microsoft already tried to block dual booting of Windows and Linux, but they’ve had to step back on that one.

  16. Quinton20 July, 2016

    I really don’t understand all of the Win 10 hate. It’s good! It’s better than 8, and I would argue is better than 7 now. At the very least, it’s on par.

    1. Nate Hoffelder20 July, 2016

      I avoid Windows 10 because OS upgrades break vital functions. Many people have confirmed this.

      My mother tried it and hates it.

      That’s where the Win10 hate is coming from.

  17. Lynne Connolly20 July, 2016

    Which “vital functions”?

    1. Nate Hoffelder28 July, 2016

      No clue. I’d have to find that out the hard way, and I don’t dare take the chance.

    2. Frank28 July, 2016

      W10 removes things I consider vital, which are:
      *Privacy of my activities, I don’t want my OS talking to Microsoft
      *Compatibility with my hardware, I use some old stuff and it may not work with W10
      *The upgrade confirmation used some tricks to get people to install W10 and if someone results to trickery I don’t want to be part of it.

  18. […] don't, which is why I am glad I have WinX upgrades blocked on my computer (here's how you can do it). Better safe than […]


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