Apparently, the whole world has not gone gaga over Windows 10 and already installed it on all of their Windows 7 and Windows 8 machines. So Microsoft has decided to be a bit more aggressive in forcing that to happen. Sometime soon, the Windows 10 upgrade will show up in Windows Optional updates. Depending on your Automatic update settings, this may be enough to trigger a Windows 10 Upgrade.
Beginning early in 2016, the upgrade will be reclassified as a Recommended update. This will trigger the upgrade on most of the rest of the Windows 7 and Windows 8 machines in service. Unless you have explicitly turned off Automatic Updates, which means you do not get any updates from Microsoft, the Windows 10 upgrade program will start running on your machine.
We are told that you have the option, even after the Windows 10 Upgrade program has started, to opt out of the upgrade. Since the upgrade takes so long to complete, you need to be sure you have plenty of time for the upgrade to finish once it starts. I would plan on being without your computer for a full day for the upgrade to finish properly.
So far, Windows 10 appears to be a stable operating system. It has taken some of the best from Windows 7, combined it with some of the best of Windows 8, and thrown in a few new features. I’m not against Windows 10 and I believe most people with Windows 7 or 8 should upgrade. However, this method of almost forcing the upgrade is going to be a nightmare. There are some programs that may run in an XP virtual machine on Windows 7 that will not run in Windows 10. I know of several business programs that have yet to be certified on Windows 10. Some people will start the upgrade without realizing how long the upgrade process will take. If they try to brute force turn off their computers, they will have an even bigger mess to clean up. Tech support people such as myself, or tech departments of large companies will not be able to be proactive and plan the roll out of the new operating system. Instead, we will be forced into a reactive state of trying to clean up after the upgrade.
January is going to be an interesting month.