Win7 RC Users Face Bi-Hourly Shutdowns, No Updates

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft is warning that those who downloaded Windows 7 RC (release candidate) sometime between May and October of last year are facing bi-hourly shutdowns if they do not upgrade (or downgrade) their operating system.

Microsoft offered its release candidate software for its then highly-anticipated Windows 7 operating system back in May 2009. It generated an unprecedented number of downloads, as users of Windows XP and Vista looked to the Redmond-based firm for something better.

Windows 7 RC: to be Banned, No Updates

Unfortunately for all those RC users, beginning February 15, 2010, employing this particular version of Windows 7 will become one heck of a hassle. Users running Windows 7 RC will first receive an expiration message from Microsoft in the taskbar, and if they fail to spend the money for a full upgrade by March 1, will then be bombarded by instantaneous shut-downs every two hours.

For those who can somehow put up with constantly having to restart their system for an additional three months will by June 1 be presented with the ominous desktop message "This copy of Windows is not genuine." Along with that, persistent RC users will no longer have access to updates of any kind and will be banned from the use of Microsoft applications. (Source:

Push On For User Upgrades

Obviously, Microsoft hopes people will take the opportunity to finally upgrade to a new, genuine version of Windows 7. "To avoid any data loss, I suggest making plans to move to a released version of Windows 7 before the automatic shutdowns start. During these shutdowns, your work will not be saved," noted Microsoft representative Brandon LeBlanc in a blog last week.

For those who don't think Windows 7 is quite worth the upgrade cost, they'll have to re-install Windows Vista or XP. However, that could be a complex process depending on the nature of the original installation. Clearly, Microsoft is hoping RC users believe the upgrade option feels a little more natural.

According to a recent review of Windows 7's first 100 days in operation, the OS has been virtually free of major security or compatibility issues. (Source:

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