The Windows 10 upgrade is free, but sometimes the installation can fail. If you’re having problems getting the upgrade to take, here’s a few reasons why the upgrade failed and what you can do for a successful upgrade.
Make Your Windows 10 Upgrade Successful
Disconnect non-essential devices attached to your computer.
If you have non-essential external devices (printer, scanner etc.) attached to your computer during installation these can interfere with the setup engine and prevent the installation from completing because Windows 10 is trying to detect and install them. So, keep the bare essentials attached, keyboard and mouse.
Disable your Antivirus utility, non-essential services, and startup programs.
If you are upgrading from a previous version of Windows or a former Windows 10 build, a common blocker for Windows setup is security utilities. Disable them; these include Antivirus, AntiSpyware and Firewall utilities. In most cases, it is strongly recommended you actually uninstall these security utilities and install versions compatible with Windows 10.
Background programs that start with Windows can also prevent a successful installation. Configure Windows to do a clean boot before upgrading. For more, read our article: Use Windows 8 Task Manager to Disable Startup Programs.
Faulty RAM (Memory)
Sometimes bad memory modules can be a factor into why Windows Setup refuses to install. Try removing or reducing the amount of installed RAM to a single stick. If you don’t know which RAM module might be faulty, try switching around the memory modules between different memory banks. On my workstation I noticed an issue after setup was complete, Windows 10 kept crashing with the error message DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE, so I switched one of the modules from memory bank 2 to 3 and the system booted the PC without a problem.
If switching memory banks does not work, you might have faulty memory modules. For this, I use memtest86+ to scan them to determine which might be faulty. This runs from a boot disk or CD and should eliminate or confirm if one or more of your memory sticks are bad or the SPD values in the BIOS are correct. Let it run for as long as you can: 2,4,6,8 or more hours, if no errors by then your RAM is OK. http://www.memtest.org/
Disconnect multiple hard disks.
If you have more than one hard disk installed in your computer, disconnect all except the target hard disk where Windows 10 will be installed. If you have a RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks) configuration, disable your RAID controller. If you have an external hard disk or USB key attached, disconnect those too, I notice those can confuse setup. Also, disable General USB Devices (example – Smart Card Reader).
Make sure you have enough disk space available.
Windows 10 requires a minimum 16 GBs (32 bit) or 20 GBs (64 bit) of disk space. If your hard disk is full, this might prevent Windows Setup from successfully completing.
Some things you can do to free up disk space:
– Move older files (Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos) to an external hard disk.
– Uninstall older programs.
See the following Groovypost articles for the many ways you can free up disk space:
- Five Ways to Reclaim Windows Disk Space – groovyPost.com
- Windows 8.1 Tip: Manage Modern Apps and Free Up Disk Space
If you are getting an error message that your System Reserved Partition is too small, then you will need to enlarge it.
The system reserve partition needs to be at least 300 to 450 MBs.
Press Windows key + R
Click the system drive to view the size.
Make sure you select the right partition during setup.
If you are performing a clean install or dual booting, Windows creates additional partitions during setup. Make sure you select the right one. Some persons will make the mistake of selecting the System Reserved Partition which is used to store recovery files.
Restore redirected Personal folders to their original location.
If you keep your personal folders on another partition or drive for storage benefits, this actually might prevent Windows from installing properly. The recommendation is you restore them to their original location. Although Microsoft officials have said the configuration is still supported, I still come across errors as a result of it.
Make sure your system actually meets the minimum system requirements to run Windows 10.
- Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster
- RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
- Free hard disk space: 16 GB
- Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver
- A Microsoft account and Internet access
Even some systems that meet these requirements might not be compatible with Windows 10.
To install Windows 10 on your PC, the processor (CPU) must support the following features: Physical Address Extension (PAE), NX, and SSE2. Most CPUs have support for these features, so if you receive this error, it is likely because the NX feature is not enabled on your system.
Download CPU-Z http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/cpu-z.html
You can use a free utility such as CPU-Z to determine if your systems processor supports these extensions. If does and you are still prevented from upgrading, you likely need to enable the extension your system BIOS or you need to update the BIOS itself. Such updates can often be obtained from the manufacturer of your computer website or from the manufacturer of your motherboard.