How to download Windows 10 image (ISO)
How to download an ISO image directly from Microsoft servers, officially, without risk and unnecessary fiddling.
One method of updating is to go to Microsoft’s website to download software that will make the process easier.
However, what if we want to install the latest version of Windows 10 from scratch, or we want to download an ISO image to burn on a DVD?
If we have a computer with Windows, this process is slightly difficult (sic!).
While on Mac, Linux or Chromebook there is no problem after going to the page below, in the case of Windows we will not see the option to download the ISO image, but only a tool that will allow us to update the system to the latest version.
The situation is slightly easier if we have a computer with an operating system other than Windows, because then the page looks like this:
What if we don’t have a computer with a different operating system and we still want to download the ISO image?
Nothing could be simpler, just use the trick below and start downloading.
Microsoft’s website recognizes by default what operating system we use to visit their website (including language). In this case, we should inform you that our operating system is not an updateable Windows system (Windows 7 or later). It is even easier to inform that our operating system is macOS or Linux and the matter is solved.
How to do it?
Google Chrome / Microsoft Edge (Chromium)
Until now, it was enough to install an extension in the browser, enabling a virtual change of the Operating System whose information is sent when visiting the Microsoft website.
The best tool was this straight from Google (User-Agent Switcher for Chrome) changing the identification of our browser to Safari > Mac Safari 7.
Unfortunately Microsoft recently changed its website a bit and therefore browser extensions no longer work. But nothing is lost, because the “User-Agent” change method still works and can be used directly from the browser using the built-in developer options. I already describe how to do it.
Once on the Microsoft website, we activate developer options:
- Using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+F12 (or Ctrl+Fn+F12).
- Using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+I
- From the browser menu (three horizontal dots) > More tools > Developer tools
A window will open on the right side of the browser, containing various elements that will seem like black magic to a layman. But without hesitation, this is nothing complicated!
In the developer options window:
- click on the three dots icon
- select More tools > Network conditions
At the very bottom of the development window, a tab with Network conditions will open, where:
- uncheck the checkbox next to Use browser default
- choose from the list Firefox - Mac
Without closing the developer tools yet, we are refreshing our Microsoft website. Thanks to this, we should see a page with the option to download the Windows 10 ISO image. At this point, we can close the development tools and follow the instructions on the screen.
You don’t have to worry about restoring the settings in the development tools to the state they were in before the change. After closing them and refreshing the page, everything returns to the default settings.
And now some pictorial writing - i.e. screenshots of how to perform the above activities.
Fortunately, in the case of Firefox, extensions still do their job. Just download the extension below.
Then, from the upper right corner, select an Operating System other than Windows. Refresh the Microsoft website and it’s ready.
If we have done everything correctly, we will see the option to choose the system version, language, and at the end we will get download links as below (valid for 24 hours).
Most importantly, the whole thing is completely legal, and we can burn the downloaded image on a DVD or create a USB installer using Rufus program.
As of version 1803 (Windows 10 April 2018 Update), the ISO image downloaded from the above page can also be used for educational keys (Windows 10 for educational customers). There is no need to download an image from an educational institution (university) for installation.