Eric Kraus


Windows 8 has Released to Manufacturing

Windows 8 has officially Released to Manufacturing (RTM).  I wanted to share a recent blog post with information regarding this milestone, but call out a few important dates for those people eager to get their hands on Windows 8.

Blogging Windows

Important Dates

  • 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.

Windows 8 Release Preview

Another Windows 8 milestone is upon us.  Windows 8 Release Preview (release candidate) hit the shelves today and it is awesome.


You can find information on Windows 8 Release Preview, here:

Or, download the ISO, here:

(use the Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool to make a bootable USB thumb drive)

Be sure to also check out the Windows Experience Blog.  It has a lot of great content on Windows 8 and specifically Release Preview.  Read the latest post here:

Twin Cities Windows 8 User Group

This just came across my inbox and I thought I would pass it along.  It also sparked a need for a consolidated list of local technology user groups, so I’m including that as well.

First, hot off the press – the Twin Cities Windows 8 User Group – a user group for people who make software to learn about all things Windows 8.  Find more information here:

The first meeting is coming up on May 22 and will cover WinRT APIs.


Second, I created a page as a single place to consolidate a list of all user groups.  If there is a group that I missed, please leave a comment at the bottom of the page or use the contact page.

Windows 8 Consumer Preview is here!

At a Windows 8 Consumer Preview event in Barcelona, attended by partners from Europe and around the world, Microsoft shared some key new updates in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview:

Broad range of product changes and improvements. Since the Developer Preview in September, designed to preview the programming platform, Windows 8 has progressed across every dimension. From completing the user experience for touch, keyboard and mouse to refining the development platform, the Consumer Preview improves performance, quality and reliability across all subsystems. With the added features, it represents a more complete view of the capabilities of Windows 8.

Windows Store with new apps. The Windows 8 Consumer Preview marks the beta opening of the Windows Store, which is filled with a variety of new Metro style apps from both third-party developers and Microsoft. During the Consumer Preview, these apps are available to try and experience at no cost to users. The Windows Store will offer personalized recommendations, and Windows 8 gives users the ability to take their apps and settings with them across multiple PCs, making it easy to discover and try new apps while offering developers the greatest opportunity of any platform.

Connecting to the cloud across Windows-based PCs and Windows Phone. The Windows 8 Consumer Preview offers seamless integration with the content people care about across their devices. An optional additional sign-on with a Microsoft account provides access to a host of features, including the ability to roam all settings, use cloud storage, communicate with email, calendar and contacts, and connect to a broad range of services. Your connection to the cloud works across your Windows-based PCs and your Windows Phones.

Internet Explorer 10 Platform Preview 5. The best way to experience the Web on Windows is with Internet Explorer 10. The browser has been re-imagined to create a new experience designed specifically for Windows 8 devices. It provides an edge-to-edge user interface that is all about less browser and more Web. Fast and fluid, Internet Explorer is hardware-accelerated to enable Web performance.

Preview of new hardware capabilities. At the event, Microsoft also showcased Windows 8 running on a wide range of new x86- and ARM-based reference hardware. This hardware will be available to select developers for trial and testing as previously announced.

Learn more and download here:

Continue to follow the Building Windows 8 Blog by Steven Sinofsky for general updates on Windows 8.


To install Windows 8 Consumer Preview from USB drive:

1.  Download Windows 8 Consumer Preview in ISO format

ISO Format:

2.  Follow the instructions on the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool to make a bootable USB drive.


ARM support for Windows 8

windows-8Today, Microsoft officially announced support for Windows 8 on ARM processor architecture.

Steven Sinofsky’s blog post is long, but thorough and interesting.  Here are some highlights from the post.

Windows on ARM

  • Windows will run on ARM Smile
  • Windows on ARM is still under development with expected milestones that align with x86/64
  • Metro style applications will run on ARM
  • Windows on ARM will ship with new versions of desktop applications such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote (currently ‘Office 15’) and Internet Explorer 10
  • Windows on ARM will support a desktop experience similar to X86/64 with File Explorer and Internet Explorer

Support for Connected Devices Services

  • Mobile Broadband
  • Printer
  • GPS
  • Sensors (accelerometer, rotation, gyroscope, compass, magnetometer)
  • Bluetooth
  • Media Transfer Protocol over USB and IP
  • Windows Update

Other Notes

  • Developing apps for ARM will be the same as developing Metro style applications on WinRT.
  • Applications for Windows on ARM will only be serviced through the Windows Store (metro applications)
  • Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 logo PCs


You can find the entire post here:

Windows 8 Consumer Preview

What a way to kick off the new blog… Microsoft has officially annouced that Windows 8 Consumer Preview (beta) will be available for download on February 29th.  If you haven’t had a chance to look at Windows 8 yet, it’s worth a peak.  Here is a short list of some of the features coming:

  • Windows (App) Store
  • Metro (Tile) Design
  • Resilient File System (ReFS)
  • Live Tiles on Start Screen
  • Fast Boot up / Sleep Wake up
  • Picture Password
  • and MUCH more…

For more information on Windows 8, be sure to check out these resources: