Microsoft's highly anticipated Windows 8 operating system has been released to manufacturing
As part of a number of programs run by the computing giant, numerous companies and individuals will be offered early access to the Windows 8 RTM code before it's released on October 26th.
The release schedule for the Operating System is as follows:
August 15th: Developers will be able to download the final version of Windows 8 via their MSDN subscriptions
August 15th: IT professionals testing Windows 8 in organisations will be able to access the final version of Windows 8 through their TechNet subscriptions
August 16th: Customers with existing Microsoft Software Assurance for Windows will be able to download Windows 8 Enterprise edition through the Volume License Service Centre (VLSC), allowing them to test, pilot and begin adopting Windows 8 Enterprise within their organisation
August 16th: Microsoft Partner Network members will have access to Windows 8.
August 20th: Microsoft Action Pack Providers (MAPS) receive access to Windows 8.
September 1st: Volume License customers without Software Assurance will be able to purchase Windows 8 through Microsoft Volume License Resellers
October 26th: Retail copies of Windows 8 will be released to the public, along with Microsoft's Surface tablet PC
"The Windows 8 team is proud to share with you that a short while ago we started releasing Windows 8 to PC OEM and manufacturing partners,” said Windows division president Steven Sinofsky.
“This means our next milestone will be the availability of exciting new models of PCs loaded with Windows 8 and online availability of Windows 8 on October 26th.”
He added: "While we have reached our RTM milestone, no software project is ever really 'done.' We will continue to monitor and act on your real world experiences with Windows 8 - we’ve used the preview process to test out our servicing and we have every intent of doing a great job on this next important phase of the product."
This story was originally published on our sister-site, PCR.