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Windows 8 Goes RTM: Last Milestone Before October Release

By - Source: Microsoft | B 76 comments

It's all plain sailing now.

Microsoft's Windows 8 has finally hit that all important Release to Manufacture milestone. Microsoft announced today that it had finally started releasing Windows 8 to PC OEM and manufacturing partners, which means the next major milestone for Windows 8 will be the October 26 release.

The announcement is right on schedule, as Microsoft in July announced the OS would hit RTM in the first week of August. The news was confirmed during Microsoft annual Worldwide Partner Conference in Toronto, Canada. Speaking to thousands of partners from around the world, Windows Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Financial Officer Tami Reller confirmed that Windows 8 was on track to hit Release to Manufacturing (RTM) the first week of August.

Today Steven Sinofsky said the previews of Windows 8 have been the most widely and deeply used test release of any product Microsoft has ever done. With over 16 million PCs over all participating, Sinofsky said a whopping 7 million of those are on the Release Preview that was released eight weeks ago.

Despite reaching RTM, Microsoft said today that it would continue to monitor and act on user experiences.

"While we have reached our RTM milestone, no software project is ever really 'done,' Sinofsky wrote. "We will continue to monitor and act on your real world experiences with Windows 8—we’ve used the preview process to test out our servicing and we have every intent of doing a great job on this next important phase of the product."

Additionally, Microsoft has said select audiences, including developers, IT professionals and partners will have early access to final RTM code beginning later this month. Here's the timeline for those that will have early access:

  • August 15th: Developers building new apps for Windows 8 will be able to download the final version of Windows 8 via MSDN subscriptions, and can visit the Windows Dev Center to get access to the final build of Visual Studio 2012.
  • August 15th: IT professionals testing Windows 8 in organizations will be able to access the final version of Windows 8 through a TechNet subscription.
  • August 16th: Customers with existing Microsoft Software Assurance for Windows will be able to download Windows 8 Enterprise edition through the Volume License Service Center (VLSC), allowing you to test, pilot and begin adopting Windows 8 Enterprise within your organization.
  • August 16th: Microsoft Partner Network members will have access to Windows 8.
  • August 20th: Microsoft Action Pack Providers (MAPS) receive access to Windows 8.

This week it emerged that October 26 would not only bring the release of Windows 8 but also the release of Microsoft's Windows 8 Surface tablets, which were announced back in June and put Microsoft in direct competition with its hardware partners.

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Top Comments
  • 22 Hide
    bison88 , August 1, 2012 7:18 PM
    I"ll take a Windows 7 SP 2 with all the upgrades under the hood from Windows 8 minus all that metro stuff.
  • 20 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2012 7:03 PM
    So who is planning on upgrading from Windows 7...............crickets, crickets.....
  • 18 Hide
    bigdragon , August 1, 2012 7:41 PM
    nospam56456425642So who is planning on upgrading from Windows 7...............crickets, crickets.....

    You mean downgrading from Windows 7. ;) 
Other Comments
  • -4 Hide
    iLLz , August 1, 2012 6:59 PM
    I am definitely excited about this release. While I am sure I'll be spending most of my time in the Desktop Environment, Microsoft has done quite a bit under the hood of Windows 8 to make it perform better than any other OS. Reading the Developing Windows Blog sheds a ton of light on the subject. Kudos, Microsoft!
  • 20 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2012 7:03 PM
    So who is planning on upgrading from Windows 7...............crickets, crickets.....
  • 2 Hide
    IAmVortigaunt , August 1, 2012 7:11 PM
    @nospam

    I am.
  • 6 Hide
    iknowhowtofixit , August 1, 2012 7:15 PM
    Microsoft usually will give out free copies of Ultimate at their shows/presentation events now that it is RTM. I received 2 copies of 7 Ultimate when I went to one of the shows a couple months before it was released.
  • 22 Hide
    bison88 , August 1, 2012 7:18 PM
    I"ll take a Windows 7 SP 2 with all the upgrades under the hood from Windows 8 minus all that metro stuff.
  • -2 Hide
    Devoteicon , August 1, 2012 7:20 PM
    *doesn't care*
  • 6 Hide
    fayzaan , August 1, 2012 7:21 PM
    iknowhowtofixitMicrosoft usually will give out free copies of Ultimate at their shows/presentation events now that it is RTM. I received 2 copies of 7 Ultimate when I went to one of the shows a couple months before it was released.

    how do you attend these shows/presentation events...I'd be interested in going. I am definitely thinking about switching to Windows 8. I am no nub pc user, always been the early adopter...if I didn't like it I'd revert back.
  • 10 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , August 1, 2012 7:22 PM
    the only thing i'm excited abot is Windows 9 when Microsoft fixes all the problems with Windows 8 that caused many people to stick to windows 7 or downgrade to windows 7 when they bought a pc with indows 8 on it. Windows 8's metro and lack of start menu is going to end up having a big negative impact on a lot of avg consumors.
  • 2 Hide
    confish21 , August 1, 2012 7:27 PM
    so wait is rtm a new build? im on 8250
  • -3 Hide
    fayzaan , August 1, 2012 7:28 PM
    SteelCity1981the only thing i'm excited abot is Windows 9 when Microsoft fixes all the problems with Windows 8 that caused many people to stick to windows 7 or downgrade to windows 7 when they bought a pc with indows 8 on it. Windows 8's metro and lack of start menu is going to end up having a big negative impact on a lot of avg consumors.


    Dude, I don't see what the big deal is about start menu, it just slows things down having to go through that stupid menu. Especially when you're trying to navigate and if your mouse moves out of the sub menu area you gotta go back under the sub menu again.

    Shortcuts are much better, faster access for day to day stuff. Who likes going through a list when you probably use like 5-6 programs on a day to day basis. Honestly, with Windows 7 I would pin my most used apps on the taskbar itself.
  • 3 Hide
    scythe944 , August 1, 2012 7:30 PM
    confish21so wait is rtm a new build? im on 8250

    Yes, it's a new build and the final version before it hits stores.
  • 3 Hide
    Osmin , August 1, 2012 7:32 PM
    I love all the stuff under the hood and will be excited when they have an easy way to disable the Metro interface and bring back the Windows 7 start button for those that do not have touch screens. Its' not just the training you have to provide to your users, but I also dislike my entire screen disappearing for a simple start button. I don't know if I would prefer desktop widgets for the Metro tiles that update information instead of looking at simple tiles on the entire screen. Would you have liked it if the Start Button, on the previous releases, erased the entire screen to show all your programs on one rectangular piece at a time? I will be getting Windows 8 at the initial discounted price, but will hope Microsoft change their mind to allow the traditional start button on desktops. I don't want to install a third party app to change the interface at work but I know that eventually when users upgrade their home equipment, the training issue will be easier to deal with.
  • 7 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2012 7:37 PM
    Its all plain sailing now......right off a cliff!

    It might be ok on tablets or phones, but the metro interface will be utterly horrid on a desktop.

    If they paid me $500 i would not install windows 8, well id install it and then uninstall it. They would have to pay me $10000 to actually switch to windows 8 and use it without uninstalling it. Anything less would not be worth my time.
  • 7 Hide
    NightbladeXX , August 1, 2012 7:38 PM
    i smell another Vista flop
  • 18 Hide
    bigdragon , August 1, 2012 7:41 PM
    nospam56456425642So who is planning on upgrading from Windows 7...............crickets, crickets.....

    You mean downgrading from Windows 7. ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    Inferno1217 , August 1, 2012 7:59 PM
    Already available through torrents.
  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2012 8:06 PM
    The rule of thumb for Microsoft OS: Skip a generation.
  • -3 Hide
    notuptome2004 , August 1, 2012 8:06 PM
    Inferno1217Already available through torrents.




    No it is not and even if it was you still need a product key to activate it. the only version you can use right now is the readily available consumer Release preview
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