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Windows 7 beta washes up on Pirate Bay

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Microsoft is set to release the first beta of its upcoming operating system Windows 7 at some point this month, but ahead of that release the trial version has already – unsurprisingly – landed on BitTorrent sites.

Anyone who is actually eager to get their mitts on the beta, which has the build number of 7,000, can download it from several notorious torrent sites including The Pirate Bay.

Meanwhile, the official release of the Windows 7 beta isn’t expected to happen until mid-January at Microsoft’s MSDN developers’ shindig.

The software giant has been keen to draw a line under its unloved Vista OS. At launch the firm failed to provide fully compatible drivers for a range of hardware devices, much to the chagrin of the few Windows users who rushed to upgrade their machines.

This time round MS is telling partners to test drive the new OS at the earliest possible opportunity, so the fact that the beta has leaked on to the interwebs won’t concern Microsoft much.

Indeed, late last year an alpha version of Windows 7 tipped up on BitTorrent sites following the company’s Professional Developers Conference where more details about the operating system were revealed.

But oddly, Microsoft, which grumbles loudly and often about the “illegal” distribution of its software, remained pretty quiet on the whole affair.

It gave us this feeble statement back in November after we asked MS if it had any comment to make about the torrenting of Win 7:

"Microsoft has not released Windows 7 code to the public and we caution consumers and businesses that downloading software (including workarounds) from a non genuine source can pose risks to their environment."

Windows 7 is widely expected to be shipped by Redmond at the end of this year, by which time the company will be hoping that the Vista debacle was all just a bad dream. ®

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