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The official launch of Windows 8 is here, and in order to ensure as many consumers adopt the new operating system as possible, Microsoft appears to be pulling out all of the stops. For a very limited time, those purchasing / upgrading to Windows 8 Pro can grab the Media Center Pack absolutely free, while the Pro version of Windows 8 itself can be had for just $69.99.

It’s an introductory offer which will not be around forever, running from October 26th 2012 through January 31st, 2012. There are constraints on how many licenses one can obtain, it’s limited to one product key per e-mail address.

Although the Redmond company will want Windows 8 to be a long-term success, early adoption rates speak volumes for consumer interest, which is why the offer only runs for a couple of months post-launch.

Windows 8 logo

If you wish to grab your copy of Windows 8 Pro or the Media Center Pack for Windows 8 Pro, the process you must follow couldn’t be simpler.

First and foremost, if you wish to simply grab the Media Center bundle, head down to http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/feature-packs and enter your e-mail address, the CAPTCHA code, and a product key will be sent to you.

WMCW8Pro

Step 1: In the Search feature of Windows 8, type "add features" and then tap or click (depending on whether you’re using a touch-based system or mouse) on "Settings".

Step 2: Tap, or indeed, click "Add features to Windows 8" and if you want to purchase a product key, select "I want to buy a product key online," following the necessary steps thereafter. If you’ve already got your key, select "I already have a product key."

Step 3: Enter your product key, then opt for "Next." You’ll then be prompted to "Add features," after which your desired product will be installed.

The Media Center component of Windows has been a prominent fixture since the days of XP, and although there’s perhaps a lot more competition nowadays (PlayStation, Apple TV to name a couple), the software maker is still pushing ahead in releasing this bundle.

Windows-8-packaging

If you’re on Windows 8 Pro, you’ve nothing really to lose by upgrading, so I’d suggest anybody undecided simply grab a product key anyway. As for upgrading to Pro for $69.99, that’s something which depends on your specific situation, and if you’re accustomed to using the "Home" editions of Windows in the past, you probably do not require the additional bells and whistles offered by Windows 8 Pro.

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