Update to 8.1 - how to

kbagrows

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Nov 12, 2012
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Probably a dumb question ;), but so far, I have held off on the 8.1 Preview for my RT. Just had this feeling that it wasn't quite ready. Thought I'd be better off waiting for the official update. Anyway, it is no around the corner, and I can't wait! But, I have been wondering whether the update will totally wipe the machine, or allow me to keep my apps, settings, etc. Also, have been thinking about whether a clean wipe and update would be better for my RT .... kind of like updating from Win 7 to WInd 8 - I updated one machine, and then later ended up just doing a clean install ..... the clean install was so much better. Haven't seen too much info on this yet. Any advice would be much appreciated.
 

jhoff80

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For Windows RT, everything is sandboxed anyway, so there should theoretically be little difference between a clean install and a upgrade install.

The install process should do a few steps after downloading:

-Clear the recovery partition and write an 8.1 image .wim file to it.
-Move your previous installation to a Windows.old folder.
-Extract that .wim file to the main partition.
-Copy AppData, WindowsApps, and other user folders to the new partition.

If you want to afterwards, you then run Disk Cleanup to get rid of your Windows.old folder.

There shouldn't be nearly as much of an issue with an upgrade install on Windows RT, simply because it's a known consistent piece of hardware that will be upgraded the exact same way every time (unlike the millions of configurations of Windows 8). Seeing as the recovery partition gets updated on RT though, you can always just do a Reset from the Upgrade and Recovery section in PC Settings and end up with a completely clean install too.

As for how the downloading process will work, we don't entirely know for sure how that will be triggered. It seems unlikely that anything will change from the Preview for that though. We know it'll show up in the Store, but my guess is that a Windows Update will automatically install at some point to trigger the Windows Store notification, and then it'll start downloading that way.
 

jhoff80

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I think he was saying that he hadn't downloaded the preview and was wondering about it for the actual release. The Preview has been pulled for RT for around a month or two now.
 

kbagrows

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That's correct - I did not download the preview. Really looking forward to 8.1 ..... feels like xmas! Anyway, still debating whether I'll just upgrade, or upgrade then do system restore to start with a clean slate....
 

RTGent

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I don't expect to need a "clean slate" install; but, I'll be ready to do one if I experience any insurmountable problems. I've been running the Preview version since it was offered to me during an update this summer. I expect to be referred to the Store for the final version soon, and to just go through a painless process --he says confidently, but not smugly or naively. :smile: Best installs to all.
 

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