Looks like Microsoft is having a hard time keeping a lid on its new operating system.
Twenty-four hours after Microsoft's new Windows 8 finally reached the Release To Manufacture (RTM) milestone and was handed over to OEMs, the Enterprise-N Edition reared its head on various file-sharing sites. Now there are reports that Windows 8 Pro and Server 2012 -- also build number 9200 -- have appeared on file sharing sites, just days before their expected legit appearance on MSDN this August 15th.
PC Advisor reports that numerous versions of Windows 8 platforms can be downloaded, and include the following (*=new):
Windows Server 2012 Datacenter (Volume License, 64-bit only)*
Windows Server 2012 Standard (Volume License, 64-bit only)*
Windows 8 Enterprise-N (the EU version, without Windows Media Player)
Windows 8 Enterprise (the international version, 32 & 64-bit)*
Windows 8 Professional (non Volume License, 32 & 64-bit)*
The site notes that currently there are no signs of the Windows 8 Standard and Home editions, the Windows RT version for ARM-based tablets, desktops and notebooks, and the Windows Server 2012 Essentials edition. All others listed above with the (*) are reportedly untouched, entirely bootable ISOs from Microsoft.
Downloaders are reporting that these builds require a serial key for installation. However Microsoft's activation servers are not recognizing the software (because technically they're not officially released), and the only keys that are currently available for use are stored on the actual Windows 8 ISO itself. Volume License copies must be activated by a KMS server, and retail copies require a key from a store purchase.
As for downloading Windows 8 the legit way, Microsoft coughed up the schedule for developers, IT professionals and more here:
* August 15th: Developers will be able to download the final version of Windows 8 via your MSDN subscriptions.
* August 15th: IT professionals testing Windows 8 in organizations will be able to access the final version of Windows 8 through your TechNet subscriptions.
* 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.
* September 1st: Volume License customers without Software Assurance will be able to purchase Windows 8 through Microsoft Volume License Resellers.
The previous leak, Enterprise-N Edition, is a version of Windows 8 that doesn't include Windows Media Player. Microsoft was forced to release this version thanks to certain rulings from the European Commission. Unlike the four new bootable ISO leaks seen on Wednesday (which come packed with Windows Media Player), the Enterprise-N leak isn't bootable, and uses a key embedded in the installer by the leaker.
For more information about the leaked builds of Windows 8 Pro and Server 2012, check out the detailed info here. Neowin indicates that the four new leaked ISOs were likely released by Russian leaker WZOR.