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Windows 8.1 Update 1 download available now for free

Sam Loveridge


Windows 8.1 Update 1
Windows 8.1 Update 1

The Windows 8.1 Update 1 download will be available sometime today, April 8, making it easier for keyboard and mouse users.

Microsoft is launching the first Windows 8.1 Update as a free download for anyone running Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 directly from the Windows Store or as an automatic update on your device.

If your PC is already running Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, the system requirements are nearly identical so you should have no issues when installing.

Windows 8.1 Update 1 – How to Download

If you want the Windows 8.1 Update, there are several ways to get access to the free download.

Firstly, the majority of you Windows 8.1 users should automatically be prompted to install the update. The download should take between 30 minutes and several hours to download and install, depending on your internet speed.

However, the download happens in the background so you can carry on with other tasks until it’s ready to install. That install will take between 20 minutes and an hour though, so make sure to save all your documents before hitting that install button.

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about Windows 10

Those of you already running Windows 8.1 will need to remember that failing to install the update will affect the running of your PC for future updates.

“Failure to install this Windows 8.1 Update will prevent Windows Update from patching your system with future updates starting with Updates released in May 2014”,” explained a recent Microsoft blog post.

For those of you making the move from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, you can get Windows 8.1 from the Windows Store from today as well.

You’ll need about 3GB of free space to install and we recommend you make a backup of any important files just in case.

All of your existing Windows Store apps won’t make the transition with you, but you can reinstall them all at once after the install via the Windows Store.

Windows 8.1 Update 1 Features

The Windows 8.1 Update 1 aims to make it easier to use with a mouse and keyboard, if you don’t share Microsoft’s love of touchscreen for desktop PCs.

The Power and Search buttons have been relocated to the upper-right hand corner next to your account, and you will notice new Close and Minimize buttons on Windows Store apps. A Windows Store app now presents the taskbar when you move your mouse to the bottom of the screen.

As a default, the Windows 8.1 Update will force your PC to boot the desktop. You can still choose to boot to the Metro Start Screen or desktop, but following the update it will automatically take you to the desktop when you start up your PC.

You can also pin both desktop and Windows Store apps on your taskbar as well as your favourite websites.

Right clicking on a Live Tile now offers a context menu giving you customisation options and the ability to change its size or uninstall it.

Read more: Best laptops 2014

John Campbell

April 8, 2014, 11:56 am

Nice article but you don't say where you can access this update! Microsoft is also playing cagey! So much for the free update!


April 8, 2014, 12:30 pm

Stupidity is at its peak, today, from Microsoft and all those who are talking about update but not giving proper idea about how to install it. I saw thousands of comments from all parts of the globe. People are struggling to find right answer. But hey, who cares?? After all, it's free.


April 8, 2014, 12:53 pm

From Wikipedia's article on Patch Tuesdays -
"Patch Tuesday begins at 18:00 or 17:00 GMT."
Microsoft releases all updates at 10 AM PST/PDT.


April 8, 2014, 1:03 pm

Yep, run Windows update, and nothing. Go to Windows Store...just in case, and of course nothing. Who is the tech press using for sources these days?


April 8, 2014, 1:05 pm

Microsoft releases patches at 10 AM Pacific time. If you really can't wait, go find them on Microsoft's website and download them manually.


April 8, 2014, 1:35 pm

It's not released in the UK until 6pm. Run Windows Update from Control Panel, or from the Charm bar go Settings (the cog), "Change PC Settings" then "Update and Recovery". Click check now.
Personally I find the Control Panel interface more informative.

It is a free updates and it is released today, just not until later today!


April 8, 2014, 1:35 pm

It's not released in the UK until 6pm.
It is a free updates and it is released today, just not until later today!


April 8, 2014, 1:40 pm

It would be nice if they shared that. For folks on the east coast it would be this afternoon. Pretty much everyone after mountain time is looking at afternoon. When you announce you have a big update releasing April the 8th, most folks assume that means domestically it rolls out morning eastern time.


April 8, 2014, 1:44 pm

I can't help but feel that these newly added features should have been in there since the release of 8, as they are pretty obvious interface uses. Having said that, I've not once struggled with my none-touch laptop using 8 and 8.1 at work.

Johnny Zenith

April 8, 2014, 2:46 pm

This update has still not been released in the UK.


April 8, 2014, 3:18 pm

10AM Pacific Time = 6PM in UK

Johnny Zenith

April 8, 2014, 4:01 pm

Thankyou DickyB.

Johnny Zenith

April 8, 2014, 5:47 pm

It is now 18.46 and there is no update. As such I am not believing a word anybody says.

Johnny Zenith

April 8, 2014, 5:48 pm

It has gone 6pm.


April 9, 2014, 5:21 am

done updating.. but trust me, there will be update 2


April 9, 2014, 7:25 am

It's always gone 6pm somewhere in the world.

I had a lovely time updating my RT device yesterday evening. Granted, I didn't hang around in the house all evening so I could do it at 6pm on the dot, but later on it ran just fine. I'm also updating my 8.1 Enterprise laptop right now using Windows Update.

I hope yours is updating now and that not having it part of yesterday evening didn't cause too much havoc for you.


April 9, 2014, 7:26 am

Funniest comment I've ever read in the comments section here. Good egg.

vincenzo de la vega

April 11, 2014, 5:52 am

Being a user of a surface 2 -32Gb W8.1 Rt, I did the update... and decided to reformat my tablette to its original settings right aftef it, and disabled the update. Every major update costed me about 3 Gb of space in free memory, a loss that i cannot afford. Of course, I value the update concerning defender, and I have a SSD in the tablette... but still, if we do the math, we get : tablette of 32 Gb has about 16 Gb left after installation of Windows, office, internet, Outlook.... added to that my email box, i obtain 10 Gb left. First major update left me with 8 Gb left, and this one ended up with 5 Gb left!! And this without movies, pictures or music on it!
So I reformatted the tablette, which is very easy on W8 rt, i have to admit. I had the pleasure of having a start button on the desktop and the possibility to have 4 different sizes of tiles for 3Gb. I personally didnt feel the need of such features, surely some do though. Also, when I decided to reformat the tablette while keeping i
The original settings, W8.1 told that I dont have enough space for that! Haha... seriously.

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