What Do I Need?
To upgrade from Windows 7/8 to Windows 10 there is a very small list of must-haves and a few recommended items (which will cover in the next section Pre-Upgrade Housekeeping). Lets take a look at what you need before proceeding and then highlight some best practices.
An Activated Copy of Windows
The most important thing is that your current version of Windows is properly activated.
The Appropriate Windows 10 Update Tool
Although the Windows 10 update tool is pretty straight forward you need the right version for your hardware. The first step is determining if you are running a 32-bit machine or a 64-bit machine.
Running the Upgrade Installer
When you are ready to upgrade run the installer tool, labeled MediaCreationTool, to get started. You will first be prompted to upgrade the PC or create installation media for another PC. Select Upgrade this PC now to begin the upgrade process and click Next. This begins the download process which is a long or short affair dependent entirely upon your Internet connection speed. We zoomed to 100 percent in a matter of minutes on a speedy cable connection, but if you are on a slow connection you might be watching the meter for some time.
When it finally finishes downloading and unpacking the installation media you will be prompted to accept the terms of the license agreement. Click Accept and the installer will do a final update check before kicking you over to the final confirmation page.
By default the installer will select the largest what to keep selection it can. If you want to make changes to what it is keeping click the small Change what to keep link as seen in the screenshot above. You will be prompted to select to select which kind of installation you want.
When you are ready click Next to proceed and it will return you to the final screen. Confirm that on the Ready to install screen it shows what you want (e.g. you selected Keep personal files and apps and thats what it says). After confirming the installation click Install. Your PC will reboot a few times as the installer works and when it is done you will be returned to the Windows login screen.