Windows 8 Released to Manufacturers: Microsoft

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft is finished with Windows 8, and has officially released the new operating system to manufacturers (a milestone called "RTM").

Hardware makers like Dell, Asus, Acer, and Hewlett-Packard will now begin the process of installing the new operating system (OS) on their computers slated for sale on or after the OS's launch date, October, 2012.

By releasing Windows 8 to manufacturers, Microsoft is acknowledging that it has completed development and testing of the new OS. Obviously, work on the OS will continue so that updates and additions can be offered in the future.

Windows 8: "A New Experience," Microsoft Says

RTM is a signal that the Redmond, Washington-based software firm feels comfortable it has satisfactorily addressed the concerns raised by the millions of people who downloaded early versions of the OS for testing and evaluation.

Microsoft Windows and Windows Live Division president Steven Sinofsky sees this RTM moment for Windows 8 as a major milestone.

"Together we are bringing to customers a new PC experience that readies Windows PCs for a new world of scenarios and experiences, while also preserving an industry-wide 25-year investment in Windows software," Sinofsky said on Microsoft's Windows blog. (Source:

Five-Step Schedule in Place for OS Launch

For those following Windows 8's march toward widespread market availability, there are five major dates to note:

  • The first is August 15, 2012, when MSDN and Technet subscribers will get access to the new OS.
  • A day later, August 16, IT professionals with Software Assurance credentials will be permitted to download their own copies of Windows 8 from Microsoft's Volume License Service Center.
  • Then, on August 20, consultants and resellers granted access to the Microsoft Action Pack will be provided open access to the new OS download.
  • Just over a week later, on September 1, businesses and IT professionals lacking Software Assurance credentials will be able to download the OS.
  • Finally, on October 26, 2012, Windows 8 will be made available to all consumers for digital download and in-store purchase. (Source:

Windows 8 versions will be offered for devices running on either Intel or AMD processors, as well as those using ARM chips (though this latter group will be using a special version of the OS known as Windows 8 RT).

Rate this article: 
No votes yet