We have been hearing a lot (both in the Press and from our own Clients) about the negative impact and affect that Microsoft has caused by its’ surreptitious installation of Windows 10. Even those that don’t want it often find that they have unknowingly had it installed on their machines. Once it is on the PC it can cause the User problems with the interfacing with other programmes they already have installed.
Just over a month ago, we wrote about a update dialogue for Windows 10 that caused a bit of a stir.
Many people have their Windows computers set up to apply recommended updates automatically, not just critical updates, as a way of taking the fuss out of staying current and up to date.
What they probably weren’t expecting was that upgrading to Windows 10 would ever be classed as an update.
There’s no formal definition of those terms, so there’s no ISO standard to which you can refer in order to decide what the correct terminology is for the next version of your software product.
One way of differentiating them is to think of updates as modestly sized downloads that bring comparatively few changes, consisting mainly of corrected bugs and improved performance, rather than brand new features.
In other words, after an update, you probably won’t need to learn loads of new menu options and dialogs, but you will immediately be glad of the fixes.
Of course, even security updates that consist almost entirely of bug fixes aren’t necessarily small downloads any more, as anyone who’s ever downloaded an OS X Combo Update file, typically 1GB or more, will know.
But the theory seems to be that after an update, things will feel substantially similar, just a bit better.
Oh, and updates are usually free, because the main version number of the product you’re using hasn’t changed.
Upgrades, on the other hand, are usually something you’d expect to pay for, to take you to the newest version, with loads of new features, better security, a more modern look, improved workflow…
…but also a bunch of differences you might find a bit disconcerting or confusing at first, and that you’ll need to learn to love.
Clearly, these “definitions” blur and overlap, but received wisdom seems to be that applying Microsoft’s monthly Patch Tuesday fixes to improve security is an update.
Indeed, Patch Tuesday was officially re-labelled Update Tuesday well over a year ago).
On the other hand, shifting from, say, Windows 7 to Windows 10 is a clear-as-daylight example of an upgrade.