Windows 10 Home has everything most consumers are looking for in a desktop OS, but that’s not the case for everyone. If you’re a PC enthusiast or own a small business, the extra features offered in Windows 10 Pro could make it the much better choice.
In total, there are 12 additional features that you’ll be able to access after upgrading to Windows 10 Pro. These include BitLocker encryption software, Remote Desktop Connection (allowing any Windows 10 device to control your PC remotely) and a virtualization tool known as Hyper-V. You’ll also get business-specific updates and device management controls. Want more details? Read our article on five reasons to upgrade to Windows 10 Pro.
Beyond all the power-user features, if you’re considering updating to Windows 11 Pro, you’ll need to have Windows 10 Pro installed first. Microsoft is only offering free upgrades to the equivalent version of Windows 11. Upgrading from Windows 10 Home to Pro will usually cost you $99, although it’s currently available for $69.99 via the PCWorld Store. This method uses an OEM code, one of the easiest ways to update your PC or laptop.
How to upgrade from Windows 10 Home to Pro using an OEM code
Below, we’ll show you exactly how the OEM code upgrade process is done. But before proceeding, there are a few things you’ll need to do to ensure the process runs smoothly. First, make sure your version of Windows 10 Home is activated using a digital license. To check, head to Settings > Update & Security > Activation. Next, turn off all background processes as these can interfere with the upgrade process. Hit Windows Key + X and open Task Manager, then click “End task” next to anything within the Processes tab. Finally, restart your device. You’re now ready to carry out the installation:
- Visit the PCWorld Store and follow the instructions to buy a Windows 10 Pro license
- Head to Settings > Update & Security > Activation
- Turn off your internet connection to go offline
- Under “Upgrade your edition of Windows” in Settings, click “Change product key”
- Enter the official Microsoft RTM code “VK7JG-NPHTM-C97JM-9MPGT-3V66T” and click Next (you can’t activate with this license, it will simply trigger a move to Pro)
- Click Start to confirm. Once complete, your PC should reboot automatically
- Reboot a second time manually to ensure the process has been completed
- Turn on your internet connection again
- Copy the official Windows 10 Pro product key from your email
- Head back “Change product key” within Settings and paste the new code to activate the license
This process can be repeated on as many PCs running Windows 10 Home as you’d like. However, you’ll need to buy a new product key each time.
Even better, if you have an unactivated Home, you can use the same process to move up to Professional.