In an interview earlier this year, a Windows executive by the name of Terry Myerson said in an interview that all Windows users — including those with pirated copies of Windows 8.1 and 7 — would be able to take advantage of the Windows 10 free upgrade offer. However, it appears as though this was a complete misunderstanding, and pirates will not be given the free upgrade.
“While our free offer to upgrade to Windows 10 will not apply to non-genuine Windows devices, as we’ve always done, we will continue to offer Windows 10 to customers running devices in a non-genuine state,” Myerson noted in a blog post yesterday.
“Non-genuine Windows has a high risk of malware, fraud, public exposure of your personal information, and a higher risk for poor performance or feature malfunctions,” he added. “Non-genuine Windows is not supported by Microsoft or a trusted partner.”
There will likely be some sort of incentive to get pirates to buy a legitimate copy of Windows 10, according to Myerson. “In partnership with some of our valued OEM partners, we are planning very attractive Windows 10 upgrade offers for their customers running one of their older devices in a non-genuine state,” he said. “Please stay tuned to learn more from our partners on the specifics of their offers.”
The new OS will launch at some point this summer, although we don’t have a specific Windows 10 release date. It will also be launching on the Xbox One, which we’ll undoubtedly learn more about next month at E3 2015.