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Want The Windows 10 Preview? Make Sure You Know What You’re Doing

Want The Windows 10 Preview? Make Sure You Know What You’re Doing

The announcement of a new Windows version in September 2014 came as no surprise. There had been ongoing speculations about the launch of a Windows upgrade which should have rightfully been called Windows 9 – but with the announcement in September, we found out that it has been coined Windows 10. This indicates the big leap the new version will mark in terms of the features.

Windows 10 will offer a significant advancement from Windows 8. It is still being developed and will probably be launched with introductory features. Advanced options will follow in the form of regular windows updates. As of now, a technical preview of Windows 10 has been launched.

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    The Big Question: Windows 10, Free or Paid?

    While Microsoft launches a new upgrade in a cycle of two to three years (this holds true for Windows Vista, 7 and 8), Windows 10 is expected to be the benchmark version for many years to come. Though Windows 10 is still in the testing phase, the excitement for its launch is widespread. And the big question on the minds of most Windows 8 users is: will it be offered as a free upgrade or will they have to pay?

    In the past, Microsoft has never offered operating systems for free, but it changed this trend by launching Windows 8.1 as a free upgrade to the users. Also, keeping in mind the apparent failure of Windows 8 to please the audience as much as it’s preceding version (Windows 7), offering the latest Windows version as a free upgrade is the least Microsoft can do to gain back the trust and loyalty of its customers. Be it free or paid, the hype that Windows 10 has managed to accumulate even before its launch can vouch for a huge number of sales. As such, it may be a good idea to keep some important pointers in mind before upgrading to the prototype of Windows 10.

    1. Remember that this upgrade is for experienced users

    This message has been circulated by Microsoft with much emphasis. If you have never performed tasks like formatting a hard drive, backing up data, installing an operating system, troubleshooting problems, and similar and the like, this upgrade will not sit well with you. You will find it difficult to work with Windows 10 if you use a computer only for surfing the internet, e-mailing or working on documents. Users who feel that they don’t really know their way around their computer should not download this upgrade.

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    2. Try not to install it on a computer that you use every day

    The Windows 10 Technical Preview is just an introduction. It will have bugs and might crash easily and often. Hence installing it on a frequently used computer might prove to be inconvenient. Install it on a separate machine which you can reserve for playing around with the pre-release.

    3. Back up your existing data

    This is a crucial step whenever you switch between operating systems or upgrade to a latest one. Make sure you back up all vital documents to external drives or to the cloud before starting with the upgrade.

    4. Sign up with the Windows Insider Program

    To get regular updates for Windows 10 from Microsoft, sign up with the Windows Insider Program. Signing up means that you clearly understand the risks of installing an under-development operating system and you cannot hold Microsoft responsible for any system crash or loss of data you’ve not backed up.

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    5. Free up enough space for the download

    Windows 10 Technical Preview download is a large ISO file. Though the size depends upon whether you download the 32 bit or 64 bit file and in which language, it will still make up for close to 4GB in size. So make sure your hard drive has enough space free to save the download. Thereafter, if you need to install Windows 10 on a fresh PC, burn the ISO file on a DVD or removable drive.

    6. The Technical Preview comes with an expiration date

    The pre-release of Windows 10 comes with an expiration date. As of April 15, 2015, your Windows Technical Preview will stop working. So make sure you satisfy yourself with all playing around and testing on it before this date. Microsoft may release a beta version of the pre-release by then. Users will start getting update reminders on April 1, 2015.

    7. Microsoft may want to look inside your PC

    This actually isn’t as scary as it sounds. In case of unexpected crashes or newfound bugs, Microsoft may scan your PC to know more. Thus, don’t install the Technical Preview on any machine on which you have heavy duty privacy settings.

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    8. It installs in a click on a Windows 8 PC

    The Windows Technical Preview installation procedure is fairly simple on a Windows 8 or 8.1 machine. It’s as simple as mounting the ISO and executing the setup.exe file. Once you double-click the setup.exe, it’s a click-next process.

    9. Re-install specific language packages

    Any additionally installed language packs will need to be re-installed when you update to Windows 10 Technical Preview. The installation will prompt you to do so.

    10. Once installed, going back is not an option

    Once you have upgraded from a Windows 8 or 8.1 machine, downgrading will not be possible using recovery partition. You’ll specifically have to re-install the previous OS.

    So…

    If you’re crazy about trying out software that’s still under development and generally like to share your opinion about it, you should definitely try out Windows Technical Preview.

    Featured photo credit: wallpaperswide via wallpaperswide.com

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    Abhay Jeet Mishra

    Writer at Lifehack & Enterested.com

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    Last Updated on October 16, 2019

    11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

    11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

    Automations are key to improving efficiency. Set the system up right from the beginning and you’ll reduce the amount of no-shows and cancellations.

    Whatever your business is, with automations, meeting scheduler apps do more than just streamline appointment setting. They prime your workflow for maximum results.

    Meeting scheduler apps are awesome if you use them right. Use them wrong and you can look like an arrogant elitist.

    In this article, I will share with you 11 great meeting scheduler apps you can start using today to boost your productivity.

    1. ScheduleOnce

      ScheduleOnce is an industry leader and robust solution. Whether you work alone or have a large team, ScheduleOnce can support you.

      ScheduleOnce allows you to create multiple users and multiple calendars. I use one calendar for booking podcast guests with automations set up to prep my guests for our interview. I use another calendar for strategy sessions and coaching calls.

      ScheduleOnce also has embeddable widgets so you can keep the scheduler inside your own website.

      Starting at $7 a month and a 14 day free trial, ScheduleOnce can fit a variety of needs in business.

      Available on Web

      2. Calendly

        Calendly stands out for its clean, easy to use interface. If you like clean design, Calendly might be your choice. It too has robust automations and integrations for individuals and teams alike.

        You can try Calendly free for 14 days. Their basic plan is free while their most robust plan is only $12 a month.

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        Available on Web | Google Chrome Extension

        3. Assistant.to

          For those who use gmail, Assistant.to is a super simple solution.

          From inside an email, you click on the Assistant.to icon and pick times your free. Assistant.to embeds the times directly into the email so the recipient can quickly pick a time that works for them.

          While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of apps like Calendly or ScheduleOnce, Assistant.to is completely free.

          Available on Web

          4. Acuityscheduling

            Acuity is a robust meeting scheduler very similar to ScheduleOnce. It integrates with CRMs, Email Marketing platforms, Analytics tools and accounting software.

            It comes with a 14 day free trial. They have a free solo account but if you want the benefit of the integrations, you’ll start as low as $15 a month and can cost up to $50 a month.

            Available on Web | iOS | Android

            5. Pick

              Built for simplicity, Pick is direct and easy to use. You can create your own url extension like pick.co/yournamehere and it integrates with Google calendar and Office 365.

              At $3 a month, this is a great tool for quick scheduling.

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              Available on Web

              6. X.ai

                For those who are early adopters of AI, this may be the solution for you. X.ai created two AI assistants they call Amy and Andrew Ingram. After setting up your account you simply CC them on your emails with the person you’re wanting to schedule and the AI assistants will email your guests from there until your appointment is set.

                This type of scheduler feels more personal because of the dialogue. There are stories on their site of people thinking Amy and Andrew are real people. X.ai integrates with Google, Office 365 and Outlook.

                Starting at $29 a month for an Individual account and $39 a month per user for a Team account, Amy and Andrew are ready to schedule meetings for you. Want to try it out first? They do have a free trial.

                Available on Web

                7. YouCanBook.me

                  is another competitive solution for scheduling meetings online. You can manage the calendars of your entire team, configure booking forms, and integrate with your calendar.

                  They have a free account branded with their company name or you can have some control over your branding and appearance at $10 a month for all their features. Either way, this company is worth a look.

                  Available on Web

                  8. Doodle

                    Doodle is unique in the space of meeting schedulers because it helps groups of people find a time to meet that works for everyone.

                    It integrates with your calendar and allows you to send a poll to all invited. Once people vote on the poll you can see which time works best for everyone.

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                    You can also run polls for food preferences if you’re scheduling a lunch meeting or a section of town if people are coming from all over.

                    While there is a free account, you’ll unlock it’s potential starting at $39 per year.

                    Available on Web | iOS | Android

                    9. WhenAvailable

                      WhenAvailable is another scheduler that works for groups of people. You can use it to schedule a pickup game of basketball, decide on your next book club or book your family reunion.

                      Their free account allows up to 20 guests, unlimited events and one contact group. For $15 a year you unlock all the goodies including reminders and chat messages.

                      Available on Web

                      10. Rally

                        Like Doodle and WhenAvailable, Rallly is helpful for scheduling meetings and events with multiple people involved. You create a poll and everyone votes. It’s quick and easy.

                        Unlike Doodle, it doesn’t have as many features, but it’s entirely free.

                        Available on Web

                        11. NeedtoMeet

                          Finishing strong, NeedtoMeet is our last app that allows you to schedule meetings or events for multiple people. It has mobile apps, custom urls, easy polling, notifications and commenting.

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                          NeedtoMeet also allows 1:1 Meetings for things like performance reviews for your whole team. You send out the your calendar slots to your team and they can only pick 1 slot, minimizing the amount of emails and scheduling you have to coordinate.

                          While they have a free account, you can unlock all features for only $19 a year.

                          Available on Web

                          Bonus: Don’t Make These Common Mistakes When Using Meeting Schedulers

                          In the excitement of streamlining your scheduling process, it can be easy to forget the feelings of those you’re inviting to meet. I know. I’ve done this.

                          To say “Hey, schedule time on my calendar” feels colder than “Hey, here’s my calendar. To avoid all the back and forth, pick a time that works best for you.”

                          Always make sure to frame your invite with your scheduler app with the benefit to them and why we’re doing it this way rather than the old fashioned, personal way.

                          A little finesse goes a long way. Without it, you risk seeming transactional and cold.

                          Some meeting scheduler widgets you can embed in your site can take a couple seconds to load. If you go this route, make sure there’s text just above the widget that lets your guest know the calendar will appear below and to wait for it to load.

                          If you use an online meeting tool like Zoom, it’s also important to explicitly let them know the meeting will take place on Zoom and include the Zoom link in the email reminder. Many make the mistake of not clarifying where the meeting will actually take place which can create last minute chaos at the time of the meeting.

                          Should you require special settings, like ethernet, external mics or lighting, let your guests know that on your thank you page and reminder emails so they are prepared for the meeting and you end up with the best meeting possible.

                          With clear communication in your automation, your meeting scheduler tools can almost perform like a virtual assistant for a fraction of the cost, or free, depending on the app you choose.

                          The Bottom Line

                          Meeting scheduler apps are diverse in features and unique in design. Before committing to one and realizing it’s not a fit, I recommend exploring which 3 might best fit you and then doing a trial with each of them at the same time so that you can see how they feel as you use them side by side.

                          Scheduling meetings the old fashioned way can be tedious. Conversely, finding a scheduling app that works seamlessly in the background is heavenly.

                          Like cell phones, meeting scheduler apps are moving from a nice-to-have luxury to must-have necessity in the lives of productive people. As you explore your options, stay true to your brand and the tools that have worked well for you to this point and simply find a meeting scheduler app that plays well with what you have created.

                          Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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