Windows 7 Release Candidate Coming Next Week

Microsoft Corp. is to unveil release candidate (RC) for its upcoming Windows 7 operating system at the end of this month, a company official notified in a blog post.

Subscribers of TechNet and Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) will have access to the RC of Windows 7 on April 30, while the general public release of the RC is slated for 5th of May, according to Microsoft’s official Le Blanc. Furthermore, Windows Server 2008 R2 RC will also be released on the aforementioned dates.

Both Windows 7 operating systems and Windows Server will be tagged as “build 7100”. The same build number implies that the two applications share the same code base, a trend initiated since Windows Vista was launched.

In addition, Microsoft also detailed a forthcoming beta of a virtualisation feature, dubbed as “Windows XP Mode”, which will enable users to run some Windows XP-based applications on Windows 7.

Touting the capability of its new feature, the software maker claimed, “This feature [Windows XP Mode] is aimed at businesses that need to maintain XP compatibility with line-of-business applications”.

The feature will be available as a free download for the users of three distinct Windows 7 editions, namely Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate.

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Our Comments

The biggest news by far is the fact that there will be a Windows XP mode which maintains XP compatibility. It reminds us of the IE7 compatibility mode that Internet Explorer 8 introduced. The release of RC1 means that Windows 7 is almost ready for launch, the only issue currently has to do with the economy and things are not looking great right now.

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