How to Download and Install Windows 8.1 Free Preview? Upgrade or Dual Boot with Windows 8

As we have told you earlier that Windows 8.1 (also known as Windows Blue) is an update for Windows 8 and Windows RT users which brings many new features to Windows 8 and also fixes several issues and annoyances present in Windows 8 OS.

Currently Windows 8.1 is under development and a free Preview version of Windows 8.1 has been released to public by Microsoft which can be downloaded from following topic:

Download Windows 8.1 Free Preview

Windows 8.1 is available for download in 2 different ways:

  • Direct update from Windows Store
  • Standalone ISO for clean installation

If you download Windows 8.1 from Windows 8 Store, it'll upgrade Windows 8 OS to Windows 8.1. If you don't want to upgrade Windows 8, you can download the ISO version of Windows 8.1 to install it on a separate partition and then you'll be able to dual boot between Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

If you are still confused between both versions and can't decide which version you should go for, following information will definitely help you in selecting the best version for you:

METHOD 1: Download Windows 8.1 Update from Windows Store

If you are using Windows 8 and you want to upgrade Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, you should download Windows 8.1 from Windows 8 Store. It'll take less time in installation and also the download file size will be less.

To download Windows 8.1 from Windows Store just follow these simple steps:

1. First of all download the required update package from official Windows 8.1 Free Preview page:

Download Update Package

2. Install the update package and restart your system.

PS: If you get "The update is not applicable to your computer" error message while installing the update, check following article:

[Fix] "The Update is Not Applicable to Your Computer" Error Message

3. After reboot, you'll get a notification message to install Windows 8.1 Preview as shown in following screenshot:
4. Click on "Go to the Store" button and it'll take you to the official Windows 8.1 Preview download page in Store.

5. Click on "Download" button and it'll start downloading and installing Windows 8.1 Preview on your Windows 8 PC.

It'll take some time and will update your Windows 8 PC to Windows 8.1.

NOTE: No product key is required if you install Windows 8.1 via Windows Store.

METHOD 2: Download Standalone ISO File to Install Windows 8.1

If you don't want to upgrade your Windows 8 PC to Windows 8.1, you can download Windows 8.1 ISO file. In this way you can install Windows 8.1 on a different partition to dual boot between Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

NOTE: ISO files will be available for download on 27 June, 2013.

After downloading the ISO file, create a bootable DVD or USB drive with the help of a freeware as mentioned here. After creating the installation media, restart your system and boot using this bootable DVD or USB. Follow the setup instructions and install Windows 8.1 on a separate partition to dual boot between Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

NOTE: You'll need to enter a product key at the time of installation if you use ISO file to install Windows 8.1.

You can use following product key:


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