Once again, Microsoft says that it will not be offering consumers who are running Non-Genuine versions of Windows 7 and 8.1 a free upgrade to Windows 10 for the first year the operating system is available.
According to Microsoft Operating System Group Chief Terry Myerson, the company will offer to Genuine Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 customers to upgrade to Windows 10 for free. Once a customer upgrades, they will continue to receive ongoing Windows updates for free, for the supported lifetime of that device. These customers purchased their Genuine Windows license from Microsoft's OEM partners, which ensures Windows is properly installed, licensed, and not tampered with.
Myerson said that in cases where Microsoft can’t verify that Windows is properly installed, licensed, and not tampered with, the OS will create a desktop watermark to notify the user.
While Microsoft's free offer to upgrade to Windows 10 will not apply to Non-Genuine Windows devices, the company will continue to offer Windows 10 to customers running devices in a Non-Genuine state. In addition, in partnership with some of OEM partners, Microsoft ise planning attractive Windows 10 upgrade offers for their customers running one of their older devices in a Non-Genuine state.
Non-Genuine Windows copies are not always pirated copies. Sometimes users purchase Windows copies that certain resellers or retailers are passing off as legal, which are counterfeit and/or tampered with.
In related news, Microsoft also promised to control the update process of Windows 10 Mobile, bypassing the carriers if necessary.
That's great news for Windows Phone users, as major updates to Windows Phone 8 and 8.1 were delayed in the recent past, especially with U.S. carriers involved.
Microsoft's Denim update, for example, was announced last September but still isn't available on AT&T's Lumia 830, T-Mobile's Lumia 635, and a handful of other phones.
If your phone is running Windows 10 Mobile, Microsoft says, it will get all updates, with Microsoft making the final call on when to push the update button.