Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

By Sean Hollister on at

Windows 10 defies review.

It’s not a finished product. It will never be a finished product, if you believe Microsoft. Like Apple with Mac OS X, Microsoft has decided that the tenth version of their operating system will be the final one. It’ll just get updated, year after year.

Only with Windows 10, even some already-announced features aren’t quite here. On Windows phonesXbox One game consoles, and reality-bending headsets like Microsoft HoloLens, Windows 10 has totally different interfaces we haven’t even tried yet. Sooner or later, Windows 10 is coming to all these platforms too.

More importantly, Windows 10 is coming to hundreds of millions of PC users, each person installing it on a slightly different computer, installing different apps and using different features. “We’re making pizza for 1.5 billion people,” Windows 10 user experience manager Mohammed Samji likes to joke. “What topping do you want?”

No one person or publication can review all those different experiences. Not even the ones available today, to say nothing of the ones to come.

Which is why many Windows 10 reviews you’ll see on the web are just an overview of the new features you can expect to see, and a cursory idea of how well they work. Not that there’s anything wrong with overviews!


But what we decided to do, instead, is tackle Windows 10 totally anecdotally. These are our experiences with Windows 10. The things we discovered, good and bad. Not necessarily the shiniest new shiny things, but the parts of the new operating system that actually impacted us for better or for worse. Chief among them: the upgrade process itself. What did we find broken after we installed?

This is not a complete list. There’s much, much more to test, and so we’ll be adding to this post (even later today!) as we experience new things.

What you should take away from this is that your mileage may, can, and will vary. And, yeah, that you should probably wait a few weeks or months before you upgrade your personal computers. Everyone seems to agree on that.

Okay, okay, you’d probably like to read about an operating system now. Here we go!

Windows 10, Day One

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Last night, I installed Windows 10 on my own personal laptop. Would my experiment end in failure? Very nearly. Read more >>

Windows 10, Day Two

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Yesterday, I was surprised how painless Windows 10 felt. Today, I’m feeling a little pain. Read more >> 

I Installed Windows 10 and Now I’m Talking to My Computer

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

We go for a spin with one of Windows 10's biggest features: the Cortana voice assistant. Read more >> 

Windows Search Doesn’t Suck Anymore

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Thanks to the absurdly powerful new system-wide Search, you’re never going to need a Start Menu again. Read more >>

Windows 10, Days Three and Four

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

What better way to test a system's capabilities than a packed LAN party? This local network gaming fest was a great way to put 10 through its paces. Read more >>

Windows 10, Day Five

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Though my Windows 10 experience has mostly been positive, the cracks are definitely beginning to show. Read more >>

Does Windows 10 Make Sense on a Big Touchscreen PC?

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Could I finally get some use out of my computer's touchscreen with Windows 10? Erm... Read more >>

The Windows 7 Upgrade to Windows 10 Isn’t So Scary After All

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

The process is simple, leaving you almost no chance of accidentally deleting all your apps and data. Read more >>

Settings Are Better in Windows 10, But That’s Not Saying Much

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Computer settings in Windows 8 were a hot mess. Windows 10 makes things better, but I still wouldn’t give the engineers a gold star. Read more >>

Microsoft Forgot To Fix One Major Thing in Windows 10

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Windows sucks at handling high-resolution displays in small laptops. Read more >>

Windows 10 Battery Life Is Better—Except When It’s Worse

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

The numbers just haven't been consistent.

Windows 10 Is Hiding a Great Video Capture Tool

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

The latest version of Windows is hiding a very welcome and well-executed feature: a video-capture tool baked right into the operating system. Read more >>

Yes, You Can Use Cortana in Windows 10 With Any Old Microphone

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Sadly most computers won’t have Cortana turned on by default—allegedly because they don’t have certified high-quality microphones built-in. Luckily that won't be a big deal. Read more >>

The Ultimate Guide to Windows 10 Keyboard Shortcuts

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

If you want to give the impression that you’ve been using Windows 10 for years, learning a few keyboard shortcuts is the best way to go about it. Read more >>

Here’s The Incredibly Hacky Way to Disable Windows 10 Updates

Proceed with caution.

Download Offline Maps on Windows 10 and Never Be Lost Again

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Let us show you how to navigate the new feature. Read more >>

How to Skip the QUEUE and Upgrade to Windows 10 Now

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

If you’ve reserved a copy of Windows 10 but haven’t gotten the upgrade prompt yet, here’s a secret: you can skip the line and upgrade right now. (from our sister site, Lifehacker UK)

PSA: Windows 10 Isn’t a Risk Free Upgrade

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Maybe you’ve heard that you can simply revert to Windows 8.1 if you don’t like it Windows 10? Well... I just tried it, and it’s not quite that simple. Read more >>

How to Do a Clean Install of Windows 10

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Windows 10 is finally here, and your computer will automatically prompt you to upgrade. But if you’d rather start fresh, you can do a clean install. Read more >>

Check These 5 Settings After Installing Windows 10

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

You’ve taken the plunge and got Microsoft’s brand new operating system up and running on your machine—now what? Before you start familiarizing yourself with the ins and outs of the software, take a tour around these five settings and make sure Windows 10 is working the way you want. Read more >>

Windows 10 Meta Review: Download It, In A Month or Two

Windows 10: The Gizmodo Review

Windows 10 is polarising people already, but there are some surprising (and not-so-surprising) agreements. Here's what the biggest names in the tech-news business have to say. Read more >>