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article imageMicrosoft creates chaos by saying Windows 10 free for Insiders

By James Walker     Jun 22, 2015 in Technology
Microsoft has created online chaos by saying that Windows Insiders would be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free before seemingly retracting that offer with an updated blog post and then saying that Insiders will get 10 for free after all.
The issue arises from the original wording of the blog post. It categorically stated that Windows Insiders will be able to update from the preview build of Windows 10 to the full release on launch day and then be able to clean install that build whenever they like.
This effectively allows anybody to sign up to be a Windows Insider, download the preview build and then simply update to the final release for free, even if they do not currently own a Windows license. People very quickly became aware of this as technology news sites pointed out the loophole that Microsoft had inadvertently created.
Presumably advised by its legal arm over the weekend, Microsoft quickly updated the blog post to be much more stiffly worded. Unfortunately, it did so silently and using rather confusing wording that now appears to indicate Windows Insiders will not get Windows 10 for free after all.
The story does not end there though. Just hours later, yet another U-turn arrived when Gabe Aul clarified on Twitter to WinBeta editor Zac Bowden that Windows Insiders will be getting a free upgrade to the final build, even if the Windows 10 preview was clean installed.
The post now says Insiders will need to have had a Genuine copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 in the past to get Windows 10, preventing ordinary users from cheating the system to install Windows 10 on older computers with Windows XP or Vista, as the original wording indicated would be possible.
Neowin has an image showing the original text and the text today with the amendments made. It appears as though the Windows team put the post live without first consulting the legal division and were later advised to protect themselves against any possible consumer abuse of the Insider program.
To end the confusion, we can now say that Insiders will be getting Windows 10 for free as long as they have run a genuine build of Windows 7 or 8 in the past, even if they clean installed Windows 10 Technical Preview onto a new computer.
If you are not a Windows Insider, don't expect to be able to simply become one to install Windows 10 on an old computer. Of course, newer consumer machines with Windows 7 or 8.1 are still eligible for the free update which can be reserved now from within Windows.
More about Microsoft, Windows, windows 10, Insiders, Free
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