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The next version of Microsoft Windows is just a few weeks away from completion and release, folks! After months of speculation, leaks, controversial keynotes and demonstrations, Developer/Consumer Previews, we’re closing in on the feature-complete RTM build. A report published earlier today suggests that the final build will be available in July. Details after the jump!

Windows 8 logo

The news comes from Neowin in the form of a blog post in which they discuss a report from Wzor which cites a “source” who claims that Microsoft will be releasing the RTM build of Windows 8 (8500.0.120623-1707) at Microsoft’s MGX event scheduled between July 17th-20th.

The claim is believable for three solid reasons. Microsoft released the RTM version of Windows 7 in July 2009, a few months after its beta; Microsoft will likely continue that trend by releasing Windows 8’s RTM build in July 2012 on the usual channels MSDN and TechNet. Microsoft has also previously explicitly stated that Windows 8 RTM would be released in July. The third reason is that Wzor is a trust-worthy source of Microsoft-related news; according to Neowin, they have been “known to leak Windows information in the past”.

For the uninitiated, the “RTM” in “Windows 8 RTM” stands for “Release to Manufacturing”. The RTM build is the final, complete build of Windows 8 that is sent out to original equipment manufacturers like Sony, Toshiba, Lenovo for use in their devices. It is essentially the same build – features and performance-wise – that is released to the general public a few months later. General retail availability is, just like Windows 7, expected in October.

Win8CP

Windows 8 is a big step for Microsoft. When it was initially announced, the company stated that the popular operating system has be reimagined from the chipset to the user experience. This is visible in the form of support for ARM chipsets in Windows RT (a special version of Windows 8) and a user-interface oriented more towards touch-input. There are many other important features which we’ve discussed here.

If you’d like to try out Windows 8, you can always download and install the Release Preview! It is missing some features that will make it in the RTM build, but I guess you can tell that by the fact that it is called Release Preview.

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