Windows 10 Now Installs on HP Stream 7 and Similar Tablets.
But should you install it?
The HP Stream 7 was a very well received bargain Windows 8 tablet, featuring an excellent screen for the price and a year of free Office 365 included. From the moment that Windows 10 was announced, users have tried to install it but were always met with the unfortunate message that the Windows 8.1 with Bing could not be upgraded because it was a compressed OS.
Every avenue was blocked, installing by Windows Update or by downloading the ISO and running the install manually. There were many who persisted with a difficult process involving USB Hubs, OTG cables and wiping the device of any rollback options and managed to install the software successfully.
However, as of Windows 10 Insider Build 10074 this restriction on Compressed Operating Systems appears to have been lifted and Windows 10 Insider Preview will now install on your HP Stream 7, Linx 7 or other bargain Windows 8.1 with Bing tablet, providing there is enough room for the installation.
To install, you can download the Upgrade Installer from Windows Insider and it will run through the wizard for you - taking approximately 40-50 minutes depending on the amount of data you have on your device.
(Editors Note: apologies for the dreadful screen glare and bubbles on the screen protector)
Of course, just because something can be done, does that mean that it should be done?
The installation process completed without any errors and remains fairly stable afterwards with a few quirks that we have noticed so far.
Picture Logon: This does not work correctly, the picture often does not display correctly or at all which prevents you from using this authentication method.
Tablet Mode: When enabled, the screen does not resize correctly when the device is rotated.
Sluggish Performance: The system is not yet optimised for these small form factor devices and occasional animation glitches or
On the other hand there are some features that seem to work much better than Windows 8.1 with Bing on these devices.
Windows 10 Home: Yes, installing the Windows 10 Insider Preview on the device will upgrade the device from Windows 8.1 with Bing to Windows 10 Home.
Touch Keyboard Improvements: Windows will suggest words as you type with the touch keyboard, helping you to complete sentences quicker. The keyboard is similar that on Windows Phone 8.0, rather than Windows Phone 8.1, so the WordFlow / Swype functionality is not there yet.
Microsoft Edge: Project Spartan works very well on the Stream 7, pages render quickly but some of the touch niceties are missing from Metro IE.
Cortana: The ever helpful personal assistant really makes the Tablet experience more worthwhile and workable.
This list is far from exhaustive and the software is still several months from release so we expect these to be ironed out. Just as long as you know when installing that you may be in for a bit of a bumpy ride for the next few builds.