Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 10, launches today in 190 countries as a free upgrade.
Starting today, those running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 on PC or tablet – and have reserved their upgrade (find out more about the here) – will be notified in waves when their upgrade to Windows 10 is ready to be installed.
For businesses, the OS is also available today, although those that have volume licensing will have to wait until August 1st to upgrade to Windows 10 Enterprise and Windows 10 Education.
So, if you’ve got all your system requirements up to date, you’ve reserved a free upgrade, made plenty of space on your machine and had a long hard look at our ‘Everything an enterprise needs to know about Microsoft’s new OS’ white paper, you should be all set to go with Windows 10.
“Windows 10 is fast and familiar - with the return of the Start menu and Live Tiles for instant, streaming updates of what matters most. Windows 10 is the most secure Windows Microsoft has ever released, with enhancements to Windows Defender and SmartScreen to help safeguard against viruses, malware and phishing and new innovations like Windows Hello, which offers a fast, secured, password-free way to log in. Keeping up-to-date is also simple, as free updates will help people stay current with the latest features and security updates for the lifetime of the device,” reads Microsoft’s official Windows 10 press release.
But while Microsoft is citing Windows 10 as its most secure operating system yet, not everyone agrees.
“Microsoft Windows’ popularity makes it an attractive target for cyber-criminals and although Windows 10 will bring with it new security features, many of them are either largely Enterprise-focused (e.g. Device Guard) or require new hardware (e.g. Windows Hello) which needs either a fingerprint reader or a more modern camera, to work. Unfortunately there is no silver bullet against all attacks and vulnerabilities,” commented Gerry Egan, senior director of Product Management, Norton by Symantec.
“Compounding this issue is the fact that Windows 10 is largely backwards compatible with prior releases of Windows. This not only allows users to leverage the enormous legacy of applications written for prior versions of Windows, but unfortunately also means that many malicious applications will continue to run too.
“So in the short term, despite the hype, we believe malware will continue to be an issue within the Windows 10 eco-system and customers will see few additional benefits from Windows 10 built-in security features. Over time as OS hardening begins to take a larger impact, attackers will shift focus to lean more on social-engineering oriented type attacks.”
While it is foolish to think that any major update would be completely free of security issues, it’s worth reading as much as you can about the new security functions in Windows 10 before installing it on your business devices.