Those of you who are still running Windows 7 or another older version of Windows might wonder if you should finally make the jump to Windows 10 (you should). Microsoft took a long time to plug in its free Windows 10 upgrade for Windows 7 and 8.1 users, which means you have to spend money for a license to upgrade your current computer to the latest taste of Windows.
Microsoft is due to the fact that Windows 7 support ceases in January 2020 and Windows 8.1 will not be too far behind. But at the moment, you might want to take Windows 10 for a long-term spin to help you decide if the upgrade is worth your hard earned money. You can do just that.
Microsoft offers a free evaluation of the Windows 10 Enterprise release that you can run for 90 days, no strings attached. The Enterprise version is basically identical to the Pro version with the same features. If you like Windows 10 after looking at the Enterprise release, you can choose to purchase a license to upgrade Windows.
Where to install Windows 10
First, you need a place to install the Enterprise release. If you have an extra computer running around, you can install the Enterprise release on that machine. If you have a computer with enough disk space, you can partition the hard drive so you can double boot more than one operating system on the same computer.
As a third option, you can use virtual hardware to install and run Windows 10 Enterprise in its own environment within your current version of Windows. A free VM program is VirtualBox from Oracle; Another is VMware Player .
How to download Enterprise Evaluation Edition
To download the Windows 10 Enterprise 90-day release, go to Microsoft's TechNet Evaluation Center . Click the Log in link at the top to log in with your Microsoft account.
Companies vs. LTSC
Microsoft offers two different versions of Windows 10 Enterprise for Evaluation Enterprise and LTSC. Enterprise is the standard Enterprise Edition of Windows 10. The Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) is a special edition that excludes more consumer-oriented features and is not updated frequently. Select the usual Enterprise release and click Continue.
Enter your personal information
Enter the next name, email address, phone number and other criteria. If you are not planning to use Windows 10 Enterprise for a real company, enter your own business name. Click Continue.
32-bit or 64-bit?
On the next screen, select which version of Windows 10 you want to download 32-bit or 64-bit. All computers from recent years should support the 64-bit version, so choose that option. Choose your language. Click Download to install the ISO file for Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation.
Decide how to install Windows 10
When the ISO file is downloaded, the next step depends on how you plan to install Windows 10.
To install it in a virtual machine, you directly work with the ISO file. If you plan to install it on an extra computer or as part of a two-boot boot, you can either copy the ISO file to a bootable flash drive or burn it to a DVD.
Starting up your computer
After your flash drive or DVD is set, use the drive or disc to boot up the computer where you want to install Windows 10. On the first Windows installation screen, confirm the language and settings, and then click Next. Click the button that says Install now and accept the license terms to continue.
On the screen to determine the type of installation you want, click on the second option for Custom: Install only Windows (Advanced).
Decide Where to Install Windows 10
You must now decide where to install Windows, so make sure the correct partition is marked. On a clean computer or in a virtual machine, there should only be one partition with undivided space. On a dual-boot computer, you want to select the second partition with undivided space, which should have been created when setting up the dual-boot system.
Click Next and Windows 10 installs.