If you're using a PC running Windows 7 or 8, you may be getting a little sick of endless popup screens telling you to upgrade to version 10. And you may be worried about inadvertently installing the upgrade as part of a security update.
Microsoft will start pushing out a Windows 10 upgrade as a recommended, virtually mandatory, update very soon (it's right now only an optional download). Some people are tempted to turn off Windows Update completely to avoid getting the new operating system – don't. It'll leave your computer vulnerable to attack as you'll no longer get security patches.
It's actually rather easy to turn off the Windows 10 upgrade function without losing vital regular software updates. Microsoft even has an official document [*] explaining how to do it.
[...] Make sure you follow all the steps, but essentially you have to:
1. Open the Registry Editor (search for regedit in the Start Menu and run it).
2. Set [DWORD value] DisableOSUpgrade to 1 in HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate
3. Set [DWORD value] ReservationsAllowed to 0 in HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\WindowsUpdate\OSUpgrade
Or, the obligatory recommendation to run FOSS instead.
New Info From MS to Prevent Windows 10 Installation on Your Domain.
I know that many here simply don't care about Windows. Fortunately or not, some of us are tied to it for our livelihood, and it is the vehicle by which we keep a roof over our heads and food in our stomachs.
In a not very surprising statement, Microsoft has announced via their Technet Blog that they are expanding the un-requested installation of Windows 10 onto PC's that are domain connected.
The response to Windows 10 has been incredible with over 200 million devices running Windows 10 around the world. A portion of that excitement is due to our popular free upgrade offer on qualified Windows 7 and 8.1 devices running Windows Home and Pro editions.
Many consumers have taken advantage of this offer thanks to an easy-to-use app called "Get Windows 10". This app introduces users to Windows 10, checks their PC for compatibility with Windows 10, and notifies the user when their PC is ready to upgrade. The Get Windows 10 app has been a popular method for consumers to quickly and easily upgrade to Windows 10.
Somebody drank a little too much Kool-aid before writing this blog post.
MS released a knowledge base article on January 13, 2016, that tells how to prevent installation via both Group Policy and via registry key.
I also note that there are still no instructions from MS on how to turn off the telemetry and phoning home of the new operating system.