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Consumers can download the Release Candidate build of Microsoft's slick new OS, Windows 7, and try it out for themselves. Both 32- and 64-bit versions are available for download.
Consumers can finally get their hands on a near-release copy of the latest version of Windows

Windows 7 has the tech community and the consumer world buzzing.  For consumers, it has been a long four months since the release of the Windows 7 beta which saw hundreds of thousands of downloads.  Some turned to torrents to try to swipe the newer beta builds or the recent Release Candidate, but for most it was a matter of waiting.

The waiting is over at last as Microsoft has officially released the Release Candidate 1 build of Windows 7 to the general public.  The build is available directly from Microsoft for download.

Microsoft is suggesting that novice users not download the build as no tech support will be provided.  Customers who download the build will have to burn the ISO onto a disk.  Unlike the more recent beta candidate builds, the RC1 build requires a complete reinstall, even on machines with a working build of Windows 7.

Both 32- and 64-bit versions of the build are available.  Microsoft recommends users' computers have at least 1GHz processor, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of free disk space.

Microsoft is promising not to limit the number of downloads of the new release, like it initially did for the beta release (before later relenting and allowing unlimited downloads).  The beta release proved a headache for some, as the large demand crashed some of Microsoft's servers at the time, rendering many eager users unable to download the beta from Microsoft.  Microsoft is hoping that this time around things go more smoothly.

The test builds of Windows 7 will work until June 2010, but starting in March 2010 they will shut down every two hours.

Microsoft has publicly stated that Windows 7 will launch "no later than January 2010."  However, it now appears that the new OS will land in time for the holiday season, as Acer has leaked its release date as October 23.

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By crystal clear on 5/6/2009 3:09:28 AM , Rating: 2
After all those positive reviews/comments on the Win 7 & an O.S. to be released soon,now comes the most difficult part of marketing this O.S.

When Vista was released, opinions like bloated to sluggish to problematic etc restricted the smooth expected transition from XP to Vista.

Now with Win7 to be released the so called smooth expected transition from XP to Win7 & Vista to Win7 could be hindered due to an economy deep in recession.

We once had the great depression now we have the great recession & that makes the corporate buyers in a massive cost cutting mood, ask some disturbing questions like-

# "There is nothing in Windows 7 that has been compelling enough to motivate us as an organization, especially in this economic climate ....

# "The reality is if it is not broken, don't fix it,".....

# "It is going to drive my hardware costs up. It is going to drive my support costs up. I will have to train all my people." .....

# "Tell me what I get from it," to move from XP to Win7...when I am desperate to cut my cost....

# "Just because it works better doesn't mean we'll move to it." ......

# Microsoft is going to support Win XP until 2014,so we can afford to wait,...

# " Whats the hurry".....

# WE plan to have all of our PCs off Windows XP by the end of 2012. "Plan for year end 2012 and I think you'll be in pretty good shape,"

# "Green is about money, not about the environment,"

Good luck to Microsoft ! marketing a good O.S. in real bad times....

By SandmanWN on 5/6/2009 9:21:01 AM , Rating: 2
They don't need to market the product in any special way. Just keep doing what they are doing and that is combat the competitors ads. The one thing they must do is cut XP off cold turkey.

Soon when people go to the B&M store it will have Win7 as the only option. The same will happen at all the online retailers like Dell/HP and so forth. From there a good product and word of mouth has always been the better marketing tool.

By Chaotic42 on 5/6/2009 7:58:17 PM , Rating: 2
I can't speak for anyone else, but I am completely ready for Windows 7 at work. We've been stuck with these horrible XP32 machines for too long.

Honestly I think 64-bit will do the pushing for Microsoft.

"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference
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