Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet



Windows 10 is here and probably every Windows-oriented user would at least like to try it out on any desired machine that is ready for upgrade. While Microsoft offered a convenient way of doing so throuhg “Get Windows” application, it gets forever to get in the line for an update or it just breaks and you can’t automatically upgrade through Windows Upgrade because of “Something happened”. Probably the biggest technical challenge ist to upgrade from low-end, Windows 8.1 with Bing tablet. However, Microsoft gave as another way to do so and I’m gonna show you that installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet is not that difficult to proceed.

Prerequisites

– Windows 8.1 with Bing tablet with 16GB of space (that is ~4GB for user) and OTG support
– Windows 7/8/8.1/10 device with at least 10GB of free disk space
– microSD card with at least 16GB of space (minimal space on card required: 10GB)
– USB flash drive with at least 3.3GB free space (4GB should be fine, I’ve used 8GB one)
– OTG adapter (microUSB – USB)

Before proceeding make sure through “Get Windows” near your system clock that your device meets Windows 10 requirements before proceeding!

Quick look on tablet setup

Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet

OTG support and OTG cable
We need it so that our tablet supports using external devices through its microUSB port. As it’s the only way to use external drive for Windows 10 media it’a must. Most of Win8 tablets, even the lower end support it so no worries.

MicroSD 16GB card
You’d thing that’s huge comparing to device itself that probably has like ~11-12GB of space with only 3-4GB for user use. That’s actually why we need so much space – installation requires around 9GB for decompressing installation files and preparing installation from Windows 10 media.

Windows 7/8/8.1/10 device
As 16GB tablet lacks space for installing windows 10 on it, we need another device to download and prepare Windows 10 media on.

Preparing Windows 10 media

Downloading Windows 10 image
If you haven’t installed Windows 10 yourselves anywhere, you might be not familiar with tool Microsoft provided called “Media Creation Tool”.
You can download it from here: http://www.microsoft.com/pl-pl/software-download/windows10
What’s different for installing windows 10 on 16GB tablet is that we will use second option called Create installation media for another PC.

Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet

Then, our preffered options should be:

English (United States), Windows 10 Home, 32-bit

Please note, that from Windows 8 you can download any language later on so don’t worry and choose US English as it lacks compatibility issues. If your device had other language as default, it would be on Windows 10 start anyway and US English will be the one to be additionally added once more.

Now, Media Creation Tool will guide you with the process.
As we’re lacking space on such low-end device, software will ask as for some other drive when it can store temp files and Windows Restore files. For that let’s choose our microSD card from dropdown list:

Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet

After doing so, Media Creation Tool will ask for drive to store Windows 10 media.

Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet

Let’s choose our USB drive connected to our PC. Then, we can start preparing the media drive. It will take some time to download and prepare media so take your time.

And finally: Installing Windows 10 on your 16GB tablet

When Windows 10 media is ready, browse to the USB flash drive on your tablet and run setup.exe.

Before installing charge your device to 100% and read every warning that installation process will notify on before proceeding!

You might also need to change your language setting if setup will tell you that “Something went wrong”.
You can do so by going to Control Panel -> Region -> Administrative -> Language for Non-Unicode Programs and choosing English(United States).
Using Copy Settings (the same tab as the previous option) for everyone else for the installation time.

Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet

After installation – Windows 10 experience

My first impressions on Windows 10 on 16GB tablet were both good and bad.
I already knew the OS and found the Tablet Mode a blessing. Multitasking is much easier and notification center is a lifesaver. However, Microsoft Edge seems to be unprepared for touch-only users as it lacks UI customization for tablets.
Also – after Windows 10 installation Menu Start animations were not smooth, thing were going slower than on Windows 8.1 with Bing and my screen backlight would refuse to completely turn off after clicking On/Off on the tablet (it would go black but would also keep backlight of the screen on). But – what put me in awe – after installing all of the modules and updates (what OS have done for me in 10 minutes after first launch) it all went back to being smooth as before and all of the other issues disappeared.

Hint!

You might also think of cleaning up C:\$Windows.~BT folder as it won’t be useful for you anymore but still takes a lot of space on tablet, depending how much OS managed to download Win10 media on its own before you manually upgraded.

25 thoughts on “Installing Windows 10 on 16GB tablet”

  1. I… I proceed the installation with windows10home32bits, don’t have drivers with camera and HD Graphics. the sound don’t work correctly. if i input the jack-fone I have sound on tablet speaker, if don’t have jack, don’t have any sound! How i can install this drivers?

  2. Good article, but my tablet has only 2 gb of free space, after all all the windows 8.1 updates. What do you recommend in this case? Thanks

    1. Thanks Lucian,
      My tablet had same amount of free space as yours.
      All I’ve done is I’ve used my microSD card as an additional space for Windows to swap things around and USB memory to create bootable device.
      Everything I’ve done is mentioned in the article, step by step. :)
      Without microSD card and USB flash memory I’m afraid it might be impossible to upgrade.

  3. Hello, thank you for this, I’m doing it on my tablet and it seems to be working, but it has been like 2 hours on 39%, is that normal? How long does it take to install the whole thing?

  4. Hi, thanks for your tutorial which i hope will help me with installing W10 on my tablet.
    However there is something I don’t understand. In your tutorial, you describe the step in which we choose the microSD to store temp files before the step in which we run the installation from the installation media (USB flash drive). From the heading of the window in your screenshot, i would say that the step in which we choose microSD for temp files occurs on the tablet after we run the installation from the USB flah drive, right? microSD is plugged into the tablet in your tutorial? Is the following summarry correct?
    1. download media creation tool on a computer
    2. prepare the installation media (4GB USB flash drive) on the computer
    3. plug the prepared flash drive on the tablet and run the installation
    4. choose the microSD (plugged into tablet) during installation on tablet for storage of temp files
    Is that correct?

    Thanks
    Simon

    1. Hi Simon,

      The steps you mention and their order is correct.
      The only thing I would correct is that we don’t actually run installation from the USB flash drive at this point, because we’re on installation media preparation step now. :)
      The installation we are running after plugging in USB flash drive is actually a process of creating Windows 10 installation media

      1. Hi Michal, (sorry for mistaking your name but i don’t have this funny l character)

        First of all, I’m glad to write you this message with edge under my Kiano intelect 8 tablet just upgraded to windows 10, and I’m infinitely grateful to you for helping me in achieving this upgrade.

        Few things that perhaps you could mention in your tutorial to help other readers, microSDmust be formatted in NTFS (had issues in fat32) , location must be set to US as well (update got stuck with my actual location), once upgrade achieved (once in setting of W10) i think we should remove the installation media cos i got stuck into login screen (not sure that’s actually the cause of this issue but after rebooting without the flash drive everything went well).

        Otherwise your tutorial should be pinned to Bing homepage in my opinion, once again thank you so much!
        Dobre bo polskie ;)
        Regards
        Simon

        1. Hi Simon,

          Thanks for all the kind words. :)
          Indeed you might need to change location to US. I must have changed it beforehand to have Cortana enabled from start.
          I also do agree you need to remove USB flash drive from tablet after installation as it will end up in dead loop. I found it obvious but it might need clarification. That’s because it will attempt to boot again from installation media while W10 is already installed.
          Can you let me know if you were actually using additional PC for creating bootable USB? I’ve just re-read everything and found out that I might actually not used additional PC at all from what I can see from screenshots.

          Anyway, thanks for passing by!

          1. Yes I used additionnal PC to create bootable USB, I would say that’s the only solution in case of these low memory tablets. I tried many times to upgrade before with different approaches and only your tutorial employing another PC made me through.

  5. Thanks for the guide!! To bad after updating to windows 10 it nuked my touchscreen and touch sensitive face button and volume control. (Device: Kocaso W700)

    1. So in the end, i broke the drivers overall and i could not get the device to function after 8 hours of tweaking. What i found out is the driver Microsoft uses is generic driver from silead and defines the digitizer’s area incorrectly, and if you don’t keep your old windows 8.1 drivers you’ll never fix it. (or unless you modify the stock driver)

      1. Unfortunately it’s sometimes the case that Windows drivers override manufacturer’s. That’s why I urge to check with manufacturer upfront if you’re ready to go (if it’s prompting you with Win10 installation window, it means you’re good to go).

  6. Just want to say thank you. At first I was almost giving up on doing this upgrade on my 16 GB tablet, because I have searched the whole internet without any successful attempt.
    This website should be topped more on the google result, seriously.

  7. Hi sir I have windows 10 , 16 GB tablet, due to storage issue my tablet unable to start ,now I want to clean flash drive and install Windows 10 is it possible if yes how

  8. Hello Michail, thanks for this walkthrough and congratulations for this wonderful site you have! I have a couple of questions and I’d be thankful if you could give me some advice.

    I have a 16gb tablet (Thomson thbk1) with W10 preinstalled. There is not enough space for all those updates and, plus, it has an SSD storage drive and I think I must keep a percentage of the storage free in order to work well and fast, isn’t it?

    1) Is it possible to choose to install updates directly to a microSD card?
    2) Could I delete/uninstall all the Windows apps?
    3) Would you recommend deactivating updates?

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hey Jim,
      Sorry for late response.
      AFAIK its not possible to install updates directly to microSD card now.
      You could however delete/uninstall or even move most of the applications to your microSD card.
      You would do so as always, through Control Panel -> Add/Remove programs.
      I would not recommend deactivating updates.
      From my current experience, you can actually skip big updates if you have no space on disk for it but still get security updates.
      And that’s the thing you would definitely want to keep.

      Let me know if that answers your questions!
      Regards,
      Michał

      1. Thanks a lot for your time.

        Somebody told me that I could have updates installed in a removable disc with Windows Media Center. Have you heard of it ?

        Do you know if it is possible to choose which updates to download and install like in W7 and earlier ? I don’t know if I can skip them at 10.

        Also, you think it is ok to delete all previous update back-up, like windows distribution etc. ?

        Last, do you think that the option letting you compress data of the C (main) drive could help or it could harm the tablet and its life ?

        Thanks again !

        1. I don’t think you can that easily opt-out from updates in Windows 10 because it is meant to be ‘ever-green’ like browsers are now – it keeps on updating all the time and updates are dependent on each other.
          As for files like backups, Windows 10 installation files and temp files are fine to remove.
          I did remove them too.

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