Good News: Microsoft extends free Windows 10 S to Pro deadline

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 6, 2017
Windows, Windows 10

Raphael Aquino Jose, Senior Product Marketing Manager Surface, revealed yesterday in a blog post that the option to upgrade from Windows 10 S to Windows 10 Pro for free has been extended.

Windows 10 S is a new edition of Windows 10 that is designed as a low-cost solution especially for the Education sector. It is a restricted version of Windows 10 that supports only apps from the Store and not legacy programs.

This has some advantages, for instance improved security, better stability and faster boot times on average, but also disadvantages as most Windows software won't work on Windows 10 S devices (which is good from a security perspective, but bad from a usability perspective).

Win32 legacy programs cannot be installed or run; this would not be that much of a problem if alternatives would be available in Windows Store. While you find alternatives for some programs in the Store, it is often the case that there is no suitable alternative available.

The latter is probably one of the main reasons why Microsoft put out the offer to upgrade Windows 10 S systems to Windows 10 Pro. This is also one of the core differentiating factors between Windows 10 S and Windows RT, as RT devices could not be upgraded to a full version of Windows 8.

Upgrades to Windows 10 Pro from Windows 10 S were free until the end of the year 2017 initially, but Microsoft extended the deadline by three months so that the offer ends on March 31, 2018 now.

For those that find they need an application that isn’t yet available in the Store and must be installed from another source, we’re extending the ability to switch from Windows 10 S to Windows 10 Pro for free until March 31, 2018. We hope this provides increased flexibility for those people searching for the perfect back-to-school or holiday gift.

The announcement confirms the reason for providing free upgrades to Windows 10 Pro; customers who cannot find the appropriate software in Store may upgrade to Windows 10 Pro to install Win32 programs on the device and use those.

Store access is still available on Windows 10 Pro though, but the core benefits of running Windows 10 S are not available anymore.

Closing Words

Users who have bought or received a device with Windows 10 S have three more months to evaluate the device and upgrade to Windows 10 Pro should Windows 10 S fail to meet their expectations or requirements.

Since it seems likely that many devices with Windows 10 S will be sold around December, it makes sense to extend the deadline to give these users ample time to make a decision.

Now You: Would you use Windows 10 S on a device?

Good News: Microsoft extends free Windows 10 S to Pro deadline
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Good News: Microsoft extends free Windows 10 S to Pro deadline
Raphael Aquino Jose, Senior Product Marketing Manager Surface, revealed yesterday in a blog post that the option to upgrade from Windows 10 S to Windows 10 Pro for free has been extended.
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  1. Harry G. said on September 11, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Suddenly an old PC infected with Petya and WannaCry is less of a worry than a PC running Windows 10 with it’s gargantuan data stealing.

  2. hirobo2 said on September 8, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    Will never touch Win10S. On a mobile device with limited write cycles (something like 2000-3000 write cycles/cell) just merely updating to Pro will use up +1 write cycle of the device’s internal storage, not to mention the potential to brick the device during the upgrade.

    1. AnorKnee Merce said on September 9, 2017 at 10:04 am

      @ hirobo2

      No, eMMC and SSD Flash drive storage used in mobile devices have advanced wear-leveling circuitry to mitigate write-wear.
      ……. Only USB Flash-drives and microSD cards do not have advanced wear-leveling circuitry = meant to be used for data/app storage or a Live Linux media, ie write-once-and-read-only operations = an OS should not be installed and run on them.

  3. AnorKnee Merce said on September 7, 2017 at 10:07 am

    So, from now until 31 March 2018, likely more consumers will start buying new budget OEM Win 10 S computers and take the free upgrade to Win 10 Pro, instead of buying new budget OEM Win 10 Home computers.

    Bear in mind that the inplace upgrades by M$ are not guaranteed to work, ie the above consumers may be stuck with Win 10 S.
    ……. Factory Reset will reset the computer to Win 10 S, ie not Win 10 Pro.
    The Factory System Image on a 16GB USB Flash-drive, created from the inboard Recovery Partition with the inbuilt OEM Recovery Backup Tool will be for the recovery of Win 10 S, ie not for Win 10 Pro.

    So, the above consumers, after having upgraded to Win 10 Pro for free, should immediately create a Win 10 Pro System Image with the Macrium Reflect Free or Acronis True Image program, or create a Win 10 Pro Install/Recovery media(= DVD or USB Flash-drive) with M$’s Media Creation Tool at their website.
    P S – The OEMs no longer provide any Install/Recovery DVDs and COA Product Keys for Win 8.x/10.

    1. Wolkon said on September 7, 2017 at 3:42 pm

      I won’t use Win10 (S) Pro but for the Win10 S interested ones your advice is very important. Thank you.

  4. CHEF-KOCH said on September 6, 2017 at 9:01 pm

    Better news: No one needs and wants Windows S (which stands for Shit).

    My professional opinion on that … :D

  5. kevin said on September 6, 2017 at 7:47 pm

    Meh, if Microsoft can’t get enough adoption, they can always just pull another GWX and disguise Windows 10S as an update that “resolves issues in Windows”.

    Yes, this one’s the update that installed the tray icon which asked you daily if you were ready to convert to Windows 10. Please notice that there is no mention whatsoever of Windows 10 in either the description or the name of this update. What this means is that once it got on the machine, average users would never be able to figure out how to get rid of the continuous nagging that the update introduced. I had this misconception that groups like the FTC were supposed to protect the public from deceptive tactics like this. “But nobody got market share by being honest!”

  6. Brenndan said on September 6, 2017 at 5:23 pm

    People need to work with a system/program and and have no time for constantly be on the lookout for M$ changes, good or bad. So the “good” new from this article can not convince me at all to change to this system. But I understand it may be helpful for others who are stuck with it.

    These entire Win10 changes, the possible hanging or misfunction of pc’s because of M$ updates are enormously time consuming and may heftily interfere with ones productivity.
    Almost everybody complains about crappy Win 8.1 but in my case it’s running very well with the help of classic shell which brings back the normal desktop UI. And it is supported until 01/23 so no need to rush to a limited toy system with big privacy issues. Not saying Win 8.1 does not have privacy issues since it does, also thanks to M$ deceiptive update policy. In the end I have more control over 8.1 than Win10, it is more stable and reliable and since I paid for it I want to have control, too.

  7. Yuliya said on September 6, 2017 at 10:50 am

    It is called damage control.

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