The Windows 10 technical preview is coming along great and has recently been updated for the second time since the program launched.
If you are willing to try it out without having the hassle of upgrading one of your PCs, you may want to consider the possibility of having it running “in the cloud” and accessing it through a remote connection on your PC. This very little invasive approach requires only the Remote Desktop client and minimizes the requirements on your hardware.
All you need is a valid MSDN subscription and access to Microsoft Azure.
On Microsoft Azure you can find a fully preconfigured virtual machine, to which you can connect in just a few clicks. Below, you can find the required steps.
First, you need access to Microsoft Azure. If you don’t have a subscription yet, fortunately there are a few ways to do so for free.
How to gain access to Microsoft Azure for free:
· If you are a startup or a startup-to-be:
o Please join the BizSpark Program with which you will get to use Microsoft products for free, including Microsoft Azure up to a value of 60’000 USD for up to 5 Microsoft accounts.
o You can find more information under BizSpark program.
o You will receive access to MSDN with you BizSpark subscription.
· If you have an active MSDN subscription:
o You have access to Microsoft Azure for free as well, including 3 VMs for 16 hours a day – perfect for our endeavor. Details on how to activate can be found here.
Log in to your MSDN account on http://msdn.microsoft.com/subscriptions, select “My Account” and “Activate Microsoft Azure”. Doing so, will unlock the MSDN benefits including the client operating system images for Microsoft Azure virtual machines.
Once you are all set, log in to the Microsoft Azure Portal and under “Virtual Machines”, select “Create a Virtual Machine”.
Next, make sure, “Compute” à “Virtual Machine” is selected and click on “From Gallery”.
In the list of Virtual Machines, make sure “MSDN” images is checked, select the “Microsoft” category and click on “Windows 10 Technical Preview for Enterprise (x64)”.
Now, give your Virtual Machine a name and leave the Tier set to Standard. I recommend using the “A2” machine size, containing 2 cores an 3.5 GB of memory as “A1” with only 1 core and 1.75 GB of memory is quite small if you want to try a couple of things in your VM. Also, set up a user that you will use for remote login.
Select an appropriate DNS name for the cloud service that is to contain your VM – or select an existing container, if you have one. Also preferably select a region close to you to host your VM for best performance.
In the next dialog, make sure, the “Install VM Agent” is enabled, the rest is up to you.
You are done! Your VM is being set up, you never got your hands dirty!
Now download the RDP profile from the VM’s dashboard page using the “Connect” button and use it to log in to your VM.
Log in to the virtual machine using the account you have specified above. In order to use all apps and the store, create a second Administrative user (or a regular user with granted remote desktop login capability) and log in again using this new account.
Enjoy Windows 10 from the comfort of your existing operating system!