Windows 8, the next major platform release from Microsoft, is getting closer to its official release date on October 26th, with the final touches already applied to it.
Rumor has it that the operating system has already hit gold, and that Microsoft has signed off the RTM (Release to Manufacturing) build.
Initially expected to be Build 8888.16384.win8_rtm.120724-1555, Windows 8 reportedly reached the new milestone as Build 9200.16384.win8_rtm.120725-1247.
Apparently, Microsoft signed the build off on July 25th, 2012, and is getting ready to have it available for download for all MSDN and TechNet subscribers.
The Gold status of Windows 8 comes at around the same date as Windows 7’s RTM version three years ago, although Microsoft did not make an official announcement on the matter for the time being.
No specific info on when the RTM flavor of Windows 8 will be released to MSDN and TechNet subscribers is available yet.
However, Microsoft did say that the move would be made in early August, and all is expected to go down as soon as this week.
Windows 8 RTM will bring along a variety of changes when compared to the pre-release flavors of the platform that have been available for download until now.
Among them, we can count a series of graphical modifications, including the lack of Aero on the desktop, the addition of new Start Screen patterns, a new default wallpaper and lockscreen image, and more.
Also starting with the RTM version, paid applications will begin to emerge in Windows Store, the software portal that accompanies the OS and which includes Metro-style apps.
Starting with October 26th, Windows 8 will be available on shelves on both x86 and ARM-based computers, just as Microsoft unveiled previously.
Dubbed Windows RT, the ARM version of the platform will not offer support for legacy applications, confining users to using only Metro-style apps. It won’t offer support for the Desktop mode either.