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Microsoft Distributing Windows 8 to Key OEMs?

Recent reports indicate that Microsoft is now distributing build 7971.0.110324-1900 (Windows 8 Milestone 3) to key OEMs (HP etc.) via the company's Connect external testing system. The distribution is by way of a program called Windows 8 and Server vNext Pre-Release Program, and requires a special invite code to gain access to the early build.

The report follows news of a leaked screenshot revealing a System Reset feature in Windows 8. This will allow end-users to reset their systems to the original OEM factory settings without the need for re-formatting and re-installing the OS. Rumors suggest that systems will be reset in a matter of minutes, and will be especially beneficial in removing malware plaguing the system.

Microsoft is reportedly compiling Milestone 3 builds of Windows 8 and is expected to release a full-fledged beta this September. Microsoft first introduced Windows 8 to the public back in January at CES 2011, revealing that the OS could perform normally on ARM-based components offered by Qualcomm and Texas Instruments. The OS is now set to make another public appearance this June, running on tablets.

Unofficial bits of the Windows 8 jigsaw puzzle have been pieced together over the last six months or so, some of which point to a full 3D interface with dynamic shortcuts and icons, to an Aero Lite secondary interface for slower systems. Many reports have indicated that the OS will integrate cloud-based services like backup, security, and even multiple user accounts. The underlying structure itself will supposedly be modular-based, allowing Microsoft to extract portions of the OS to work on smaller devices.

Key OEMs invited into the Windows 8 and Server vNext Pre-Release program will be directed here, although the X's will be replaced by the actual invite code. It's highly probable that these OEMs will be the ones actually providing tablet samples slated for showcasing in June.

Discuss more about this and other Windows 8 features here!

  • T'would be called Bubbles 8 by the looks of it.
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  • heyhihowyadurrin
    Why Windows 8 already? Is this necessary for anything other than making money?
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  • HavoCnMe
    We need software companies to develop strictly x64 programs so we can leave x86 software in the dust. JMO
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  • PreferLinux
    TheCapuletI imagine that's just windows media center, or something similarly stupid. No one in their right mind would make that the primary UI for any OS.I agree.
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  • Ragnar-Kon
    heyhihowyadurrinWhy Windows 8 already? Is this necessary for anything other than making money?Nope.

    Although you could say Microsoft is back on track with releasing a new OS every 2-3 years. We were EXTREMELY spoiled with Windows XP, as most of us ended up using it for over 8 years. Although, personally I would consider Windows XP two releases. One release being pre-SP2, the other being post-SP2.

    Win 95 - 1995
    Win 98 - 1998
    Win 2000 - 2000
    Win XP - 2001
    Win XP SP2 - 2004
    Win Vista - 2007
    Win 7 - 2009
    Win 8 - 2011/2012?
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  • outerheaven
    What about Windows ME??
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  • Xatos
    That feature to essentially reformat and clean install without actually doing so is pretty nice. How many times could that have come in handy in the past? Let's hope it does its job without any hitches or drawbacks, because I sure love the idea.
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  • aaron88_7
    The report follows news of a leaked screenshot revealing a System Reset feature in Windows 8. This will allow end-users to reset their systems to the original OEM factory settings without the need for re-formatting and re-installing the OS.
    I wonder how long it will take for a virus to take advantage of this retarded feature.

    Seriously, if you need a button to re-instal Windows because you get so much Malware then even this 'retard button' isn't going to help you. And I completely agree it is way too early to be moving away from Windows 7. But that's Microsoft for you, they just release OS after OS and hope one of them is somewhat of a success. Probably be as popular as Windows ME
    Reply
  • bobusboy
    so help me if DX12 is windows 8 or higher only...... also the bubbles are bloody stupid.
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  • webbwbb
    Well the primary purpose of a company is to make money.. For some people, this may be a great solution because they may benefit from the integrated cloud features and save a lot of money on malware removal by just resetting the OS rather than paying Geek Squad to "fix" things. It will also add more competition to the tablet and mobile device space with ARM support. Those who don't want to switch can just stick with Windows 7.
    Reply