Windows 8 Information *Updated for SKU Versions*


Call me Mak or K, Mod Emeritus
First, Windows 8 is the official product name for the next x86/64 editions of Windows.
The User Interface is not called Metro anymore it is called Windows 8 UI or as I like to call it 8UI. Yes it is in the final build and no you cant bypass it.

Windows 8 Release Date Information

•August 15th: Developers will be able to download the final version of Windows 8 via your MSDN subscriptions.
•August 15th: IT professionals testing Windows 8 in organizations will be able to access the final version of Windows 8 through your 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 Center (VLSC), allowing you to test, pilot and begin adopting Windows 8 Enterprise within your organization.
•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.
•Oct 26th: Released to the world. Available for purchase by all.

For PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors (both 32 and 64 bit), we will have two editions: Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro. For many consumers, Windows 8 will be the right choice. It will include all the features above plus an updated Windows Explorer, Task Manager, better multi-monitor support and the ability to switch languages on the fly (more details on this feature can be found in this blog post),which was previously only available in Enterprise/Ultimate editions of Windows. For China and a small set of select emerging markets, we will offer a local language-only edition of Windows 8.

Windows 8 Pro is designed to help tech enthusiasts and business/technical professionals obtain a broader set of Windows 8 technologies. It includes all the features in Windows 8 plus features for encryption, virtualization, PC management and domain connectivity. Windows Media Center will be available as an economical “media pack” add-on to Windows 8 Pro. If you are an enthusiast or you want to use your PC in a business environment, you will want Windows 8 Pro.

Windows RT is the newest member of the Windows family – also known as Windows on ARM or WOA, as we've referred to it previously. This single edition will only be available pre-installed on PCs and tablets powered by ARM processors and will help enable new thin and lightweight form factors with impressive battery life. Windows RT will include touch-optimized desktop versions of the new Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. For new apps, the focus for Windows RT is development on the new Windows runtime, or WinRT, which we unveiled in September and forms the foundation of a new generation of cloud-enabled, touch-enabled, web-connected apps of all kinds. For more details on WOA, we suggest reading this blog post which shares more detail on how we have been building Windows 8 to run on the ARM architecture.[/FONT]

Windows RT software will not be sold or distributed independent of a new Windows RT PC, just as you would expect from a consumer electronics device that relies on unique and integrated pairings of hardware and software. Over the useful lifetime of the PC, the provided software will be serviced and improved.

As stated in this blog post here.

Also noted from the blog post above about Building Windows 8 for ARM:

Using WindowsRT “out of the box” will feel just like using Windows 8 on x86/64. You will sign in the same way. You will start and launch apps the same way. You will use the new Windows Store the same way. You will have access to the intrinsic capabilities of Windows, from the new Start screen and Metro style apps and Internet Explorer, to peripherals, and if you wish, the Windows desktop with tools like Windows File Explorer and desktop Internet Explorer. It will have the same fast and fluid experience. In other words, we've designed WindowsRT to look and feel just like you would expect. WindowsRT enables creativity in PC design that, in combination with newly architected features of the OS, will bring to customers new no-compromise experiences.

Windows 8 UI style apps in the Windows Store can support both WindowsRT and Windows 8 on x86/64. Developers wishing to target WindoesRT do so by writing applications for the WinRT (Windows APIs for building Metro style apps) using the new Visual Studio 11 tools in a variety of languages, including C#/VB/XAML and Jscript/ HTML5. Native code targeting WinRT is also supported using C and C++, which can be targeted across architectures and distributed through the Windows Store. WindowsRT does not support running, emulating, or porting existing x86/64 desktop apps. Code that uses only system or OS services from WinRT can be used within an app and distributed through the Windows Store for both WindowsRT and x86/64. Consumers obtain all software, including device drivers, through the Windows Store and Microsoft Update or Windows Update.

WindowsRT can support all new Windows 8 UI style apps, including apps from Microsoft for mail, calendaring, contacts, photos, and storage. WindowsRT also includes industry-leading support for hardware-accelerated HTML5 with Internet Explorer 10. WindowsRT will provide support for other industry-standard media formats, including those with hardware acceleration and offloading computation, and industry-standard document formats. In all cases, Microsoft seeks to lead in end-user choice and control of what apps to use and what formats to support.

So as long as the coding for the App is done properly, it can be used by any Windows 8 based system. That is of course if the developer wants it that way. They have their choice not to code it for use on all devices and can limit the user experience to either desktop or WindowsRT.

Introducing Windows 8 Enterprise
Windows 8 Enterprise features include all the capabilities that customers get with Windows 8 Pro (as outlined in Monday's blog), plus premium features designed to provide the mobile productivity, security, manageability and virtualization needs of today's businesses. Here's an overview of some of the key features that will be available exclusively to Windows 8 Enterprise customers (and note this is not an exhaustive list:(

  • Windows To Go is a fully manageable corporate Windows 8 desktop on a bootable external USB stick. This will allow IT organizations to support the “Bring Your Own PC” trend and businesses can give contingent staff access to the corporate environment without compromising security.
  • DirectAccess allows remote users to seamlessly access resources inside a corporate network without having to launch a separate VPN and helps IT administrators keep remote users' PCs in compliance by applying the latest policies, software updates, is easier to deploy, and it can be implemented with the existing IPv4 infrastructure.
  • BranchCache allows users' PCs to cache files, websites, and other content from central servers, so content is not repeatedly downloaded across the wide area network (WAN). When used with Windows Server 2012, Windows 8 brings several improvements to BranchCache to streamline the deployment process, optimize bandwidth over WAN connections and ensure better security and scalabilty.
  • AppLocker can help mitigate issues by restricting the files and apps that users or groups are allowed to run.
  • VDI enhancements: Enhancements in Microsoft RemoteFX and Windows Server 2012, provide users with a rich desktop experience with the ability to play 3D graphics, use USB peripherals and use touch-enabled devices across any type of network (LAN or WAN) for VDI scenarios.
  • New Windows 8 App Deployment: Domain joined PCs and tablets running Windows 8 Enterprise will automatically be enabled to side-load internal, Windows 8 Metro style apps.

In addition to these features, customers will get improvements to the fundamentals, including end-to-end security and better manageability. Businesses will also benefit from the immersive, personalized experience Windows 8 has to offer and the no-compromise business tablet that will mean businesses no longer have to choose between the functionality of a tablet or the productivity of a PC. There's a good summary of these features in a press release we issued last month.

Enhancing the Windows Benefits in Software Assurance

As we reimagine Windows 8, we're also enhancing our Software Assurance (SA) benefits to meet the needs of today's workforce. I know you all see firsthand how technology has influenced the way people work and how employees need to stay connected to their data, apps and other people from anywhere, at any time, from a range of devices. We will be making improvements to Windows Software Assurance that provides business customers with better ways to enable these flexible work styles.

So let's take a look at some of the details of the new licensing benefits. After Windows 8 Enterprise becomes available, Software Assurance customers will have the following new use rights:

  • Windows To Go Use Rights: Windows To Go will allow companies to support Bring Your Own PC scenarios and will give employees who need to work from home more secure access to their full corporate environment. With Windows To Go use rights under Software Assurance, an employee will be able to use Windows To Go on any company PC licensed with Windows SA as well as from their home PC. Additionally, through a new companion device license for SA, employees will be able to use WTG on their personal devices at work.
  • Windows RT Virtual Desktop Access (VDA) Rights: When used as a companion of a Windows Software Assurance licensed PC, Windows RT will automatically receive extended VDA rights. These rights will provide access to a full VDI image running in the datacenter which will make Windows RT a great complementary tablet option for business customers.
  • Companion Device License: For customers who want to provide full flexibility for how employees access their corporate desktop across devices, we are introducing a new Companion Device License for Windows SA customers. For users of Windows Software Assurance licensed PCs this optional add-on will provide rights to access a corporate desktop either through VDI or Windows To Go on up to four personally owned devices.

Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack

In addition to Windows 8 Enterprise, Software Assurance customers also have the ability to subscribe toMDOP. MDOP helps enterprise customers take advantage of desktop virtualization, manage Windows features, and restore user productivity after a system issue. We have recently also added User Experience Virtualization (UE-V), which allows individuals to change their device without reconfiguring applications or settings in Windows 7 or Windows 8.

Windows Intune

Windows Intune
offers PC management and security from virtually anywhere via the cloud. In addition, wejust announced that the next release of Windows Intune will support mobile device management, a self-service Company Portal and the ability to leverage user accounts, in addition to several other enhancements. Windows Intune is available as an add-on for Windows customers with Enterprise Agreements and gives you a way to manage multiple devices for each employee under a single license.

Enhancing Enterprise Value

Windows 8 Enterprise, MDOP, Windows Intune and our new Software Assurance benefits will help you deliver the experiences people love while maintaining the security and manageability you require.
If you haven't already, I encourage you to download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview to experience first-hand the beautiful, fast and fluid experience that includes the mobility, performance and security features your business needs. I also encourage you to stay tuned here to the Windows for your Business blog for more information on the enterprise value we'll be delivering.

First and foremost, no you will not be able to download or even purchase Windows RT at all! Microsoft has already made the announcement that WindowsRT will only be available via OEM purchased on a device. It will not be available for sale otherwise. So dont expect places like NewEgg to have it up for sale. You must have your device locked down to only run WindowsRT in order for it to even boot.

Download Windows 8 Enterprise Evaluation

First to note before it is asked, NO there is no Media Center available for this. At all, so dont ask how you can add it or what the serial is for it. It doesnt exist and cant be added to this version.

The Windows 8 Enterprise 90-day evaluation is designed specifically to help IT professionals test their software and hardware on the final version of Windows 8 Enterprise.

Windows 8 is ready for business. Designed to deliver the experiences people love and the enterprise-grade solutions companies need, Windows 8 Enterprise provides what today's workforce wants, bringing new possibilities in mobile productivity, end-to-end security, virtualization and management advancements, and the business tablets you've been waiting for. Try Windows 8 Enterprise today to experience the new capabilities firsthand and start planning for Windows 8 in your organization.

About This Evaluation

The Windows 8 Enterprise evaluation provides up to a 90-day evaluation of Windows 8 Enterprise. It is intended for evaluation purposes only and cannot be used for productive business or personal purposes. In order to use this evaluation, the product must be activated online with Microsoft-hosted activation and validation services. Microsoft does not provide technical support for this software.

Is the evaluation edition really for you?

If you qualify under one of the following programs listed below, you may already have access to the final bits and do not need to download the 90-day evaluation.

Microsoft Partner Network
MSDN Subscription
TechNet Professional Subscription
Microsoft Volume Licensing/Software Assurance

If you do not qualify for one of these above programs, you are installing this at your own risk. Know that the Enterprise Edition is only good for 90 Days and NO you cant just upgrade to the Pro version later, NO you cant carry over any programs or settings and NO it cant be extended with sle -rearm. You know that by installing this you are installing a version that is for businesses, not personal use.

Things to Know

This is evaluation software designed for IT professionals interested in trying Windows 8 Enterprise on behalf of their organization. We do not recommend that you install this evaluation if you are a not an IT professional or not professionally managing corporate networks.

Activation and Usage Guidelines

Plan ahead. Back up your files and settings before installing this evaluation and, if necessary, again prior to the 90-day expiration.
Upon installation, you will have 10 days to activate this evaluation online. Windows will prompt you to activate. A product key is not required for this software. Unsure on how to activate? Visit our FAQ.
You must complete activation before August 15, 2013 to use this evaluation.
Once you activate, you have up to 90 days to use the software. You can track the amount of time you have left by referring to the “watermark” in the lower right corner of the Windows desktop.
If you fail to activate this evaluation within the 10-day grace period, or if your evaluation period expires, the desktop background will turn black, you will see a persistent desktop notification indicating that the system is not genuine, and the PC will shut down every hour.
Following the evaluation period, you will need to replace the operating system on your test computer and reinstall all your programs and data. It is not possible to upgrade the evaluation to a licensed working version of Windows 8 Enterprise. A clean installation is required.

Windows 8 Enterprise minimum system requirements:
1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor
1 gigabyte (GB) RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
20 GB available hard disk space
1366 × 768 screen resolution
Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver
Internet access (fees may apply)
Microsoft account (LiveID) required for some features
Some features such as touch and Client Hyper-V may require advanced or Windows 8 certified hardware
The Windows To Go feature requires advanced hardware. To learn more about USB drives certified for Windows To Go, please visit

Download the Windows 8 Enterprise Evaluation

Downloading the Windows 8 Enterprise 90-day evaluation could take a few hours. The exact time will depend on your provider, bandwidth, and traffic. If your download gets interrupted, it will restart where it left off. See this download FAQ for details. For technical questions, please visit the Windows 8 IT Pro Technical Forums.

Download 32 Bit | Download 64 Bit


Look I am only adding this cause I know that if I dont, someone else will. I highly suggest you read the things I have emphasized in regards to this being for business use only and not for home users. Just know that you are installing a version that is different than the one you will have access to in Oct and may not act accordingly. It is not made for gaming or use with all of your devices. It is made for an office!

As for other information, I will post it once it is found out.
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Golden Master
Re: Windows 8 Leak Note

I wonder how much space it uses? I have a old 1st generation OCZ Vertex 30GB SSD I can install Windows 8 on.


Call me Mak or K, Mod Emeritus
Re: Windows 8 Leak Note

I shall find out tonight when it gets released finally.

office politics

It's all just 1s and 0s
in the lab
interesting nugget i found today

Exclusive: Microsoft's Metro branding to be replaced 'this week' according to internal memo | The Verge

quote: The Windows team is "working on a replacement term" according to the memo, "and plans to land on that by the end of this week." Until then, employees have been advised to refer to the Metro style user interface as the "Windows 8 style UI."

edit @steve it is known that microsoft produces the largest amount of code for linux as a third party contributor. to me, it makes sense they would reuse the code in win8. linux being GPL and such.


Call me Mak or K, Mod Emeritus
Yes Microsoft is now trying to claim that Metro was a term used for testing purposes and will try to get away from it. Wont happen, but still.

Just because Microsoft is the largest contributor of code to Linux doesn't mean anything. China is the biggest contributor of steel to cars, does that mean that they get credit for building the core of every car made in America? Of course not. Microsoft will use some of the code, but for anyone who has a clue knows that the code differences between Linux and Windows is great. Cant just "reuse" the code as if it was interchangeable between the 2 systems.


In Runtime
Just one thing I want to clarify. The Windows Apps available for the desktop version of Windows 8 will be the same apps available for Windows 8 RT right, on the phones and tablets? Thing is, I am contemplating a transfer to full set of Windows devices. I currently own 2 Android (a tablet and a phone) along with my laptop. The promise of full synchronized work between all three devices attracts me, as synchronization between two Androids and Windows isn't exactly fully compatible and parallel. Syncing via Dropbox and Sugarsync can only do so much, and syncing my Onenote is even a bigger pain in the ass, with the limitations of the official app on Android (And I use OneNote for taking notes in class). No calendar for Android also is able to fully sync with Outlook, and Google sync for Outlook contacts and calendar isn't really all dandy. Still no way to actually sync Google Tasks to Outlook directly without third party paid solutions.

Of course the earliest Windows 8 device I can get to would be to upgrade my laptop. I want to know if I can actually test the Windows RT applications on the Metro Interface on the desktop, and basically, monitor the growth of the Marketplace on my desktop. So that when my first upgrade (phone upgrade but I can get a tablet from my carrier) comes next year, I know if its viable to opt for a Windows Surface device (lack of certain apps and capabilities compared to Android may put me off).


Call me Mak or K, Mod Emeritus
No the apps available on the desktop will not be the same ones available on WindowsRT. Simply put WindowsRT is for ARM Devices. If it was the same set of programs, then people would be able to port over their favorite Android Apps to Windows with no issues. So the Apps Available for WindowsRT will not be the same and they will not be interchangeable either.

Plus if you read carefully, you will see that the 2 different Surface Devices are not the same. The lower end model comes with WindowsRT, Office and no stylus support. The higher end model comes with a full blown version of Windows 8, stylus support but no Office.

In addition to that, I can tell you from personal experience using Windows Phone 7, that there is no such thing as full sync. You can sync your email, your calendar and photos, but that is it. But that can already be done with Android, so I fail to see how switching would help.

I have no issue syncing my Android Device and my Windows PC. My calendars, photos, contacts and everything that I want are fully synced and can be grabbed from either my PC or my phone at any time. So yet again, I fail to see the issue. Maybe it isnt the devices fault but you who expects the sync to be more than it is. Cause I can tell you right now if you think that you will walk away from your PC with your Surface device in hand and it will be like your still at your desktop, your sadly mistaken. It will only sync the same thing and give you your profile settings from the PC. It will not sync your apps, files and other things.

So yeah, you have a misconception as to what will truly be done with the Sync.

If you read the first post, your question will be answered. WindowsRT will be only available for ARM Devices and it will not be sold separately. It will only come bundled with Surface Devices. It can not be installed on a PC.

So no you cant install RT on your PC. You cant just sync the devices as if they were the same device. You can install the Release Preview to see how some things are done, but simply put everything done within Windows 8 is done via the cloud. You profile you create with your Microsoft account is saved to the cloud, your files are shared via SkyDrive and your contact via Messenger. It is the same exact setup as it is with Android. The only difference is that they will be able to sync easier, but not that it cant be done on Android. I have no issue with doing my Windows and Android nor does my wife, who is far less PC Savvy than most.


Call me Mak or K, Mod Emeritus
Oh BTW there is a completely free and easy way to Sync your Outlook Calendar with Google.

Getting started with Google Calendar Sync - Google Calendar Help

Just did it myself, guess what? Put in my account info, a minute to sync and now both my phone and Outlook have the same information. They will auto sync now and no paid software necessary or 3rd party apps. Just have to put your tasks on your Calendar and viola. Synced.


I wouldnt doubt it. The reason is simple. Money. They lose more money to put such products out to the suppliers than they make off of them. How many copies do you actually think I have sold at Walmart for $200? Now is Walmart inclined to spend more money to get more copies when they havent sold the 4 we have had for 2+ years? Now we have to try and get a refund on them and get Windows 8 to carry come Oct.

This is a smart move as it will cut costs down for Microsoft and allow them to sell the product at a cheaper price. Yeah people who build are gonna be up in arms, but frankly the number of people who built and buy full licenses is minimal compared to those who buy upgrades or get it with a new PC.
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