Microsoft had already confirmed that Windows 7 would be available for consumers ahead of the 2009 holiday season. Now the Redmond company has an actual general availability date. Windows 7 will hit the shelves on October 22, 2009. October was already indicated as the month of Windows 7 GA (general availability), and now the software giant comes only to confirm information leaked into the wild. GA means that, come October 22,
customers will be able to purchase Windows 7 from retail outlets or pre-installed on new OEM computers.
“Our milestone-to-milestone approach for Windows 7 is built on a great deal of feedback from customers and testers. This has been pivotal to the development of Windows 7. I [wrote] a few weeks ago that it’s looking like we’ll have Windows 7 ready in time for the holidays. Since then we’ve made enough progress to feel really good about announcing that Windows 7 will be in stores beginning October 22nd,” revealed Brandon LeBlanc
, Windows communications manager on the Windows Client Communications Team.
On the path to general availability, Windows 7 has an additional milestone to go through: RTM. The Redmond company does not regard RTM as an actual step, but rather as a process. As Windows 7 will be released to manufacturing, original equipment manufacturers will start getting the code for pre-installation on new computers, and the boxed copies of Windows 7 will begin being produced. RTM is to come as early as next month.
“Obviously, Release To Manufacturing (RTM) is an important milestone on the path to GA. We anticipate that we’ll be able to make the RTM code for Windows 7 available to our partners sometime in the 2nd half of July. We also expect to be able to make RTM code for Windows Server 2008 R2 available to our partners in this time frame as well,” LeBlanc added.