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Windows 8.1 is Now Available

Windows 8.1 is Now AvailableToday is the day that Windows 8 users have been waiting for. Microsoft has released Windows 8.1 to the masses. If you’re already running Windows 8 then you can download the update to 8.1 for free. If you’re on an earlier version of Windows then you’re going to need to buy a copy of the new operating system for your upgrade. The [amazon_link id=”B00EDSI7QO” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]standard version is $119[/amazon_link], and the [amazon_link id=”B00EDSI8HW” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Pro version is $199[/amazon_link].

If you already own Windows 8 then all you should need to do to start the upgrade process is go to the Store app. There should be a big tile indicating that you can update for free. That goes for Windows 8 and Windows RT users. You can even do the update if your machine is running the preview release of 8.1 that was made available this summer. However, if you have the preview version installed you will be required to reinstall you apps. Your files, documents, and user accounts will all be preserved though. Once the update completes it will actually have tiles on your Start screen for all the Windows Store apps you had installed previously. This allows you to reinstall them pretty easily, and preserves where you had them on the Start screen. Upgrade times well very depending on the device and your connection speed. The download is a little over 2GB in size, so you’ll definitely want to make sure you have enough room on your device prior to starting the process. Lower-spec devices will naturally take longer to upgrade also. The Surface RT that we upgraded took over 90 minutes to complete the process.

If the option to upgrade isn’t showing up in the Store there is an easy way to force the issue. Head on over to this support page from the PC you’re trying to update, and follow the instructions. Thanks to the Windows Observer for that trick!

Let us know how the update process goes for you, and how you’re liking the new updates!

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About the author

Josh Pollard

Josh has been writing software since his parents brought home their first computer. His love for gadgets and technology eventually spurred a passion for home theater technology. After starting the DMZ, he received Microsoft’s MVP award for Windows Media Center. Even though the beloved home theater PC platform is all but dead he continues to tinker with consumer entertainment technology. He’s a life-long gamer and DIY smart home enthusiast. He co-hosts the Entertainment 2.0 podcast with Richard Gunther and the DMZ’s gaming podcast, Story Players, with Joe DeStazio.