Q: Which Windows 8 version is right for me?
A: There are two versions to choose from: Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro. Windows 8 comes with everything you need to connect, share, work and play—even for power users. Windows 8 Pro adds enhanced features for people who need to easily connect to company networks, access remote files, encrypt sensitive data and other more advanced tasks.
Q: What kinds of devices come with Windows 8 already installed?
A: A whole new family of desktops, laptops, tablets and other devices—many with touchscreen capabilities—come pre-loaded with Windows 8. In general, they're faster and more energy-efficient than previous models and the portable and ultraportable devices are thinner and lighter, with better performance and battery life.
Q: Can I upgrade my PC from an older version of Windows to Windows 8?
A: Yes. Your upgrade experience will depend on what version of Windows you currently have. For example, if your PC is running Windows 7 Home Basic or Home Premium, your files, programs and settings will easily transfer to Windows 8. If your PC is running Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate, Windows XP or Windows Vista, you'll need to reinstall your programs. Some features (like those that support touchscreen) may require a new PC.
To find out if your PC is ready for Windows 8, simply go to www.windows.com/upgradeassistant and download Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant, which will provide you with a full compatibility report.
Q: How can I tell if my devices and apps will work with Windows 8?
A: Windows 8 generally works with the same peripheral devices and apps that work with Windows 7. In some cases, a device or program might require an update, or you might need to uninstall some apps, and then reinstall them after you upgrade to Windows 8.
The best way to tell if your apps and devices will work before you upgrade is to run Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant, a free program that scans your current hardware, apps and devices for compatibility. Make sure all the devices that you need to work with your PC, like printers and monitors, are connected to your PC and turned on before you run Upgrade Assistant.
After Upgrade Assistant scans your PC to determine what's compatible, it provides a compatibility report that lists any issues that you might need to address when you upgrade. You can save or print this report to use later.
If you'd like to look up compatibility info for a specific device or program, you can search for it in the Windows Compatibility Center.
Q: What settings, apps and files can I keep if I upgrade?
A: You can upgrade to Windows 8 from Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 8 Release Preview, Windows 8 Consumer Preview, or Windows Developer Preview, but you might not be able to keep all of your files, apps and settings. The following table shows what you can keep during an upgrade, depending on the version of Windows you currently have running on your PC:
||What you can keep
|Windows 8 Release Preview
|Windows 8 Consumer Preview/Windows Developer Preview
||Nothing (but your files will be saved in the Windows.old folder)
||Apps, settings and personal files
||Windows settings and personal files
If you choose to boot from removable media created during the download process, you won't be able to keep your apps, Windows settings, or personal files when you upgrade.