Microsoft Hits Vista RC1

On Sept. 1, Microsoft began making available for download to the first of an estimated 6 million testers the last public build of its next-generation Windows client. Now it's a race to the finish line. (Microsoft Watch)

Microsofts Windows Vista RC (Release Candidate) 1 is done. Now its up to the estimated 6 million testers to which the company is planning to release the code to determine if it really is ready for prime time.

Microsoft has posted the RC 1 build, Number 5600, on its TechBeta Web sites for select technical beta testers, including TAP (Technology Adoption Program) partners, on September 1.

Microsoft is planning to broaden the beta to include up to six million participants, total, some time next week, according to industry sources.

Vista Beta 2 went to more than two million testers. Microsoft officials, contacted on September 1, declined to confirm the six million figure.

RC1 is expected by testers to bear a strong resemblance to Vista Build 5536, the pre-RC-1 build that Microsoft distributed to testers one week ago.

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