Something like 3 or 4 years ago I bought two Dell inspiron laptops (one for the office, one for me at home) with Windows 8 installed. Quite soon thereafter I wanted to upgrade them both to Windows 8.1 - and it didn't work. Repeatedly. On either machine. The upgrade always failed - at the end, after a long time when it looked as if it might succeed. The story of that anguish is somewhere on this forum, but so long ago I've forgotten how to find it. I ended up suspecting that maybe Avast! antivirus was interfering, but never got to the point of removing it to find out if that was the problem. In the intervening time I have used the office machine daily, and the home one very seldom (because I have a Dell XPS 8700 desktop, with Windows 7 when I bought it, and now Windows 10 for quite some time and quite some satisfaction).
Fast forward to now. In view of the impending July 29 deadline for free upgrade to Windows 10, I thought it was high time to try again to upgrade both laptops to Windows 8.1, and then of course to Windows 10. So today I tried the free upgrade to 8.1 on the office laptop - just picked it off the tiles. Didn't disable anything, not even the screen saver, just let 'er rip. Much to my astonishment the upgrade went through without a hitch and the office laptop is now happily running Windows 8.1 (until some time next week when I upgrade it to Win 10 <G>). This evening I intend to try the same with the home laptop. Since it has been unused for months i suppose I will need to give it time to do a lot of Win 8 updates first.
The office machine has an i3 processor and 500 MB of disk space. It has 8 GB of RAM, since I found the original 4 rather limiting I added another 4 GB module in the empty slot. The home machine has an i7 processor, 1 TB of disk space and 12 GB of RAM. Otherwise they are about the same and have pretty much the same software installed - nothing exotic. Avast! Internet Security Premium on both.
Can anyone suggest why the upgrade now went without a problem on the office machine, when earlier it failed on at least half a dozen separate occasions, always in the end rolling back to 8.0? Updates to Windows, or to Avast!, or to ????
And the main question, how to make sure all the relevant updates have been applied to Windows 8 before I start the upgrade? I have updated Avast! and MBAM already, but Windows hasn't said anything? It was set to automatic updates but must now be at least three or four months behind. Oops, the reboot (after completing Avast! update installation) is taking a LONG time. Could that be Windows updates?
The office laptop gave me a notification, a little earlier this afternoon (before I started the upgrade) that Win 8 was no longer supported or receiving security updates. It offered info about Win 10, and I think an upgrade to Win 8.1, but those options then disappeared (I was in the middle of urgent E-mails to the State water regulators who govern my life) and when I did launch the 8.1 upgrade I did so by selecting the "Free Upgrade" tile from the old Metro interface (I was normally running Classic Shell on the Desktop). 8.1 dumped the Classic Shell, but 8.1 has a Start button, and anyway being a veteran JCL programmer and Unix user I'm not much bothered by minor changes of interface <G>. I mean, an interface is an interface, it lets you get to the programs (oops, er, "apps" - urk -) you want to use. In the day I wrote a lot of "pseudo-GUI" code - progress bars and all, it's surprising what you can do, with a bit of ingenuity, when all you have to control the screen display is the ASCII character set. It's actually cleverly designed for that kind of use. Now of course with individual pixel addressing you can write progress bars so thin it takes a microscope to see them (at least for an old man's eyes <G>) but hey, whatever tickles folks' fancy, that's OK with me. OK, it does irk me when my smartphone provider updates their software and changes the shape and appearance of every single icon just to have something different - and the older versions were much clearer and less easily confused with one another, now they are all round, for God's sake, why? what were they, er, thinking? or using, or whatever? Whatever it was, I don't want it in MY pipe <G>.
BTW now, more than half an hour later, the reboot is still saying "please wait". Not "Configuring Windows" or any of the other messages usually associated with updates. How long should I give it, overnight?
Of course, the upgrade in the office took quite a while too. About 3 hours altogether.
EDIT 7/9 at 10:07 Pacific time: After staring (intermittently) at "please wait" and the "turning worm" display for 6 hours or so last night, I went to bed. This morning the Avast! update was completed and the computer opened up normally (password etc.). I thereupon tried the upgrade to 8.1 which failed almost immediately - within a minute or two, not after hours of download and preparation as on earlier occasions. No reason was given. It occurred to me to wonder if the Internet connection might be the problem? The laptop is linked via WiFi with the rest of my home network. I can hardwire it to the router if that would help. N.B. the office laptop that did upgrade successfully yesterday afternoon was also connected only via WiFi to the office network. The two routers (office and home) are identical and so are the two desktops (both running Win 10). The home network has one printer (HP Photosmart) hardwired to the desktop computer; the office network has two office-sized printers, one (Lexmark) hardwired to the desktop computer, the other (Brother) connected via WiFi. The distance from router (and desktop) to laptop is about 20 feet at the office, and about 3 feet here at home. The home desktop has a 2 TB external hard drive (WD MyBook) and a Nikon slide scanner connected via USB, the office desktop does not.
The office laptop is plugged in whenever I am using it (basically, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 5 days a week) and disconnected when not in use. The one at home has been plugged in continuously for months - but the luminous band around the connector is not always lit. The power icon in the system display (lower right of screen) shows 75% available, plugged in, charging, but it never seems to reach full charge. The Power Plan is set to "Microsoft Signature". "Desktop Mode Battery Charge" is enabled (I suppose that is limiting the charge to 75%?). Question arising: does the battery status matter when the laptop is plugged in?
Edited by saluqi, 09 July 2016 - 12:54 PM.