Upgrade your Surface RT / Windows RT Device 8.1 Preview to 8.1 RTM

Upgrade your Surface RT / Windows RT Device 8.1 Preview to 8.1 RTM

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I've been running the 8.1 Preview on my Windows RT device since it was available. It was a nice improvement. Yesterday the RTM version of 8.1 was available, and I wanted to get it on my Surface RT running Windows RT. I checked Windows Update and it wasn't an option. I checked the Store, and I was seeing some odd behavior. I couldn't' find it via search, although I wasn't 100% of the title of what I was looking for. I did some digging, and it turns out there's an easy way to do the upgrade. Open a browser and type in "ms-windows-store:WindowsUpgrade" (without the quotes). This will open a link to the Upgrade in the Windows Store. From there I clicked the install button and let it do it's magic. I'm now running Windows 8.1 RTM on my Surface RT.

Warning: The store just showed the spinning dotted circle for a while after clicking install. The machine was installing the update during this time. You can bring up the task manager to see if the machine is working. Press Ctrl-Shift-Escape to bring it up. Hit the more details arrow. Then switch to the performance tab. You should see CPU activity. Mine stayed above 20% the whole time and spiked higher.

UPDATE: It appears that the 8.1 preview has been temporarily pulled. If this method doesn't work, the update is likely not back yet.

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  • Had the same issue, couldn't find the upgrade in the Windows Store - thanks for the pointer.

  • Thanks, been banging my head on this one. Thought maybe systems running a little slow with people upgrading or something. Appreciate it, worked for me.

  • I did this and it did open the link to download but when I click to download it opens up the Windows store and does nothing else. I did this twice and just keeps opening up the windows store....

  • Astounding! I banged my head on this for a couple of hours yesterday. Why Microsoft couldn't make this easier is beyond me.

    Thanks for the help!

  • This is still not working for me.  When I open the link.  The store opens but just sits there with the spinning "I am thinking" animation.  

  • I rebooted.  Opened the link and it worked.  It is now downloading.  Thanks for the help

  • Thanks for the tip!  Worked for me!

  • Be patient. It should install once you tell it to. The UI might get a little screwy unfortunately. Check your machine performance to see if it's doing anything. I posted how in the warning section above.

  • I'm still using Windows 8 RT. I was expecting an update.....nothing yet.

  • This should work if you're on the Windows RT RTM build. It's just taking you directly to the installation page for the "Upgrade app".

  • Duuuude, awesome, thanks!!! I even tried restoring to factory specs and the effin' recovery disk wouldn't work (it said "This is not a valid recovery disk", the one I had just created 10 minutes earlier... Did Microsoft lay off the Surface RT QA team? :-)

  • Thank goodness someone has an answer, I was frustrated trying to find an answer, THANK YOU.

  • I was about to give up on this upgrade. Thank you!!

  • I did as instructed and the browser url took me to the Windows RT 8.1 page in the store however when I tapped the download button, it paused and worked for a few seconds and then dropped back to the store home page and nothing else happened.  I'll try rebooting and try it again.

  • Ok after rebooting and going back to the store it now says downloading Windows RT 8.1 in the upper left.  Hopefully that means it's actually downloading although after several minutes there has been no progress.

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