Windows 8's delivery date: October 26

Windows 8's delivery date: October 26

Summary: Microsoft and partners will make Windows 8 available on new PCs and via various upgrade programs on October 26, officials are saying.


Microsoft is continuing to eke out the Windows 8 news.


The latest tidbit is Windows 8's exact availability date is going to be October 26. (The last we heard at the Microsoft Partner Conference a week ago is it would be in "late October.")

October 26 will be the date Windows 8 will be available preloaded on new PCs and also to those purchasing it through one of the upgrade programs Microsoft has announced recently. Based on previous Microsoft statements, it also seems October 26 will be the date that Windows RT-based Surface PCs/tablets from Microsoft will be available via the Microsoft Stores and select online outlets.

Microsoft officials shared the exact date on July 18 with the thousands of Microsoft salespeople attending the Microsoft Global Exchange Conference in Atlanta, according to a July 18 post on the Windows team blog. (Update: I've added a photo of Microsoft Windows President Steven Sinofsky at MGX, about which one attendee of the conference tweeted and posted publicly today.)

Windows 8 is on track to be released to manufacturing by the first week of August, officials said last week. Windows Server 2012 and Visual Studio 2012 also will be released to manufacturing at the same time. But Windows Server 2012 won't be available to customers until September, Microsoft officials have said. Execs have declined to say when developers will be able to start using the final Visual Studio bits.

Microsoft officials said last week that business users with volume-licensing contracts will be able to get their hands on the final Windows 8 bits shortly after the product is released to manufacturing, which will be two-plus months before the product is generally available via retail. Microsoft officials are declining to say when those with MSDN and TechNet subscriptions will be able to obtain the final Windows 8 bits.

Microsoft officials have said those upgrading from Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and the Windows 8 Release Preview will be able to buy upgrade copies of Windows 8 for $40 each. Microsoft officials have not said how much the promised System Builder SKU will be for those who want to build their own PCs. They also have not said whether a full, non-upgrade version will be available via retail and how much it will cost. But the unofficial word is Microsoft may be dropping full packaged product at retail with Windows 8.


Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Operating Systems


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Sticking with Windows 7

    For the very first time - I've used every version of Windows back to 2.1 - I'm not upgrading. Metro looks fine on my phone, and perhaps a tablet, but I don't see living with this on my desktop.
    • Do'h why!!

      You will... leave windows 8 a chance and I guarantee you that you will upgrade...

      If not ... you're stupid...
      • I plan on ...

        I plan on giving it a chance ... on a Windows RT tablet. I already use Metro on my phone, and love it. However, I spend 8-10 hours a day on a computer, mostly Visual Studio and SQL Server Managment studio, and find nothing pleasing about jumping back and forth between the desktop environment (I love Aero glass) and Metro. I like a clean desktop, minimal icons, and a great photograph (notice the avartar ....). No photographs as a background on Metro.
        • Yes and no ...

          I am REALLY looking forward to surface with win8 but I hear you on the desktop side. Honestly it has potential and I really like Metro, having used it on my phone as well and on xBox. What has held me back so far on the desktop, and my primary laptop an Envy 14 is the AMD video drivers. They just aren't there yet. Get to work guys.
          • I'm having problems with the AMD audio drivers too, with the sound

            coming out quite distorted. Other than the sound (which is a problem for AMD to fix), I've had no problems with Windows 8.
        • Comments aren't consistent with how Windows 8 actually works on desktop

          If you spend most of you time in Visual Studio, etc. why is Metro even of concern to you? Pin the main applications you use to the taskbar and never use Metro elements. Easy. That's how I use Windows 8, and the updated from Windows 7 are great (the power-user menu in the bottom left is awesome, as is the new task manager).

          The Windows desktop still allow you a wallpaper (however it's more customisable on multiple monitors).
          • Using Windows 8, or "avoiding Metro"

            "Pin the main applications you use to the taskbar and never use Metro elements." That's not using Windows 8, it's "avoiding the Metro experience".

            I agree with rotague. It's cool on a phone or tablet, but it gets in the way on traditional PCs. I mean, I don't have any use for apps on my dev notebook, so why am I forced to use that UI?
        • I do to...

          I spend all my day in VS and SQL mgmt studio too, but have moved to Windows 8 preview edition becuase it is simply easier and quicker. Metro on a desktop is just as good, i find i use start now as a dashboard of what else is going on while i work, granted I have multiple monitors but if you think of the metro screen as a new full screen start button, which displays your emails etc you see it is far more powerful and time efficient...
          • yes exactly!

            the metro interface may confuse people early on but I tell everyone to just think of it as a giant start button that provides more information... essentially that is all it really is.
        • Well then

          Your doing nothing that I am not doing and Win 8 works well for me. In fact I got on a Win 7 machine today and actually missed some of the short cuts and features that I get with Win 8. In reality Win 8 works fantastic weather you are a "power user" or casual user.
      • Typical troll...

        Calling everyone stupid that doesn't share his worldview. If, by chance, you don't already have one, you should apply for employment at Microsoft. You would fit right in.
      • Stupid??.... microsoft is stupid for thinking anyone wants their crapware.

        Dealing with microsoft garbage from Dos 2.1 all the way to Windoze 8, the one constant is the level of incompetence at every level of microsoft. When a company never invents only takes over and incorporates there isn't ever a understanding of the base code. The sad fact is microsoft constantly prove they never even understood even their own code let alone anything from some poor company they assimilated.

        Windoz 8 is just another virus with mouse support.... or now you can say a virus with finger support.
        Reality Bites
        • use something else then

          but then you'd have nothing to complain about
          • Did just that

            Gave Wndows the boot in 2002 and couldn't be happier!!!!
          • Did just that?

            So you booted up windows in 2002 and you've never been happier? Awesome!
        • You are just as stupid...

          • Grow up

            Seriously - for now and the near future, the market has spoken (ignorant you may consider) and Windows is still the standard. If Apple had won the OS wars (or some alternative) then people would be complaining about that. If you're "tech savvy" enough to complain about windows all the way back 20+ years ago, then you should be able to use Linux. Why hasn't someone created a better OS?
          • The market was manipulated

            This is nonsense. Even if someone uses windows, they do not have to adopt the latest OS. It is a cleverer strategy to wait for the fanboys go through the pain of the bugs.

            My organisation is rolling out Windows 7 in December 2012.
            Van Der
          • Clearly you never tried Windows 8

            The latest version is so stable and fast it surprised me.
          • Which is fine...

            ...but why did you wait? What painful bugs are there in Windows 7 that you've been waiting on the fanboys to find and fix?

            I rolled out Windows 7 a year ago to my entire enterprise, and the only pain experienced was by the accountants when they paid the licensing bill, lol. But seriously, my IT department's support requests are down with Windows 7 and Office 2010, so good luck on your rollouts. You'll really enjoy it.