Microsoft is now offering a 90-day trial of Windows 8 Enterprise edition for development and evaluation purposes.
Set to arrive on October 26th for general public, Windows 8 will drop for desktop, tablet and smartphone simultaneously, it appears to be the most significant update to the OS to date. Much like the Release Preview we’ve all already had the chance to play around with, the RTM (final shipping version) build comes with a few additional changes and tweaks.
Earlier today, Microsoft released the final bits of Windows 8 RTM to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. Students with DreamSpark Premium accounts will get access to it on August 25th.
For those of you who don’t have access to either of the above mentioned subscriptions, Microsoft has made available the 90-day trial of Windows 8 Enterprise edition that can now be had for evaluation purposes. We recommend that you give it a shot in case you’re very eager to jump off the Windows 7 bandwagon and are seriously planning to upgrade to Windows 8. The option is there.
This evaluation provides a 90-day trial of Windows 8 Enterprise edition. Both 32-bit and 64-bit versions are available as ISO images in the following languages: Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), English, English (UK), French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), and Spanish. In order to use this evaluation, you must register and the product must be activated online with Microsoft-hosted activation and validation services. Microsoft does not provide technical support for this software.
Perhaps the only downside to it is that once the 90-days evaluation period is over, you cannot upgrade it to the final version, your desktop will go black, and your PC will shut down on an hourly basis.
Things to Know Before You Start
- The evaluation edition will expire and cannot be upgraded.
- To upgrade, the evaluation must be uninstalled and a non-evaluation version of Windows must be re-installed from your original installation media.
For those of you interested, the download links for both x86 and x64 versions of Windows 8 Enterprise evaluation for developers can be found at the source link from Microsoft below.