Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer predicted that the gold code of Windows XP would ship to manufacturers on Monday 27 August. This latest -- and most controversial -- version of the world's most widely used operating system is still not due to appear in the shops, or ship on PCs, until October, so there is still plenty of time to investigate the issues, find out if an upgrade is for you and if so what you will need to upgrade.
NEWS: Windows XP to drop in on Friday Tues 21 Aug
Microsoft is planning an elaborate publicity stunt, delivering the new operating system to PC makers from a helicopter at its Redmond headquarters.
See the Windows XP News Section for the latest XP headlines. REVIEW: Windows XP beta 2 review
Beta 2 provides a good glimpse at the design and features of this eagerly anticipated upgrade for both home and office.
SPECS: Future perfect: Microsoft's spec for your next PC
Microsoft has developed a set of guidelines and recommendations for PC manufacturers seeking to label their machines with the Windows XP logo. These provide a good indication to what you will need to run Windows XP.
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