Windows 8 upgrade fast, not foolproof

It took 22 minutes from start to finish to upgrade my SSD-equipped desktop PC to Windows 8 Professional. While that’s speedy, it could have been faster as there were upgrade hiccups.

These could trap less-experienced customers.

The first step was buying and downloading the software directly from Microsoft.com. Easy and seamless.

The install button didn’t work. Windows 8 said it couldn’t create the start-up folder it needed for the install. So, guided by the install software, I copied the upgrade software to a spare USB drive and rebooted.

This time Windows 8 couldn’t update the existing preview copy. The only allowable option was to install a fresh operating system. This took just 11 minutes. Not at all bad.

Trap for young players

During the install, Windows asks for the product key. Microsoft sent one by email during the transaction. You’ll need to read this during the install – something you can’t do on the machine you’re working on.

I used my iPad to read the product key, I could have used my phone. If you can’t do either, you’ll need to print out the email or, worse, copy down the code, before upgrading.

Two copies of Windows

When the system rebooted, it found two copies of Windows 8, the preview and the newly added full version. I clicked on the wrong install, so had to go through another reboot to find myself in the new Windows 8 installation.

Windows 8 wanted my Microsoft account details – I already have an account so that was easy enough. There were a few minutes of software jiggery-pokery and that’s it. 22 minutes after downloading the software the new OS was in operation. My next task is to remove the old, preview edition of Windows 8, reinstall key applications and I’m done.

All up a good experience despite the glitch with the existing preview version. Windows 8 is the easiest Windows install I’ve ever seen.