TechSpot means tech analysis and advice you can trust. Read our ethics statement.
Microsoft probably thought the amount of Windows 10 lawsuits it was facing would decrease after it stopped the aggressive upgrade tactics last year, but it seems this isn't the case. The company is now being sued by members of the public who say the OS is "destroying" their data and damaging PCs.
Three Illinois residents are seeking class-action status for their lawsuit, which was filed at Chicago's US District Court. It says Microsoft wasn't clear about the potential risks that come with installing Windows 10, and that the operating system itself is defective.
The company "failed to exercise reasonable care in designing, formulating, and manufacturing the Windows 10 upgrade and placing it into the stream of commerce. As a result of its failure to exercise reasonable care, [the company] distributed an operating system that was liable to cause loss of data or damage to hardware. " claims the complaint.
The lawyers want the case certified as a class action to include everyone in the US who upgraded from Windows 7 and experienced data loss or damage within 30 days - a figure that could reach into the hundreds of thousands. All three plaintiffs say once they upgraded, which only one of them consented to, their PCs malfunctioned and lost data. In the case of Stephanie Watson, she was forced to buy a new computer.
In an email to the Register, Microsoft said: "The Windows 10 free upgrade program was a choice designed to help people take advantage of the most secure, and most productive Windows. Customers had the option not to upgrade to Windows 10."
"If a customer who upgraded during the one year program needed help with the upgrade experience, we had numerous options including free customer support and 31-days to roll back to their old operating system," wrote the company.
Back in December, Microsoft Chief Marketing Officer, Chris Capossela, admitted the firm had gone too far with its malware-like Windows 10 upgrade methods.
The lawsuit isn't a unique situation for Microsoft; others in the US and abroad have tried the same thing, including the operator of a Californian travel agency who won $10,000 through a lawsuit that alleged the forced installation caused her PC to become slow and unusable.